Every day is a race against time for mother of two daughters Nur Atiqah Ismail, 34. Her 9-year-old goes to student care after school while her 3-year-old is in childcare.
A typical weekday for her starts at 5.30am. She wakes her kids up, makes breakfast, gets ready for work, gets her kids ready for school and leaves the house.
She then walks her elder daughter to the primary school near their home, walks back, takes the LRT at Bukit Panjang to Choa Chu Kang MRT, changes trains to Jurong East, drops her 3-year-old off at the childcare centre, then makes her way to Kent Ridge where she works. That’s four trains in all!
“It’s always a rush. The trains are always packed as it’s during peak hours. I must squeeze in the train. I have a ligament tear, so it’s always difficult to stand, especially when I carry my 3-year-old and three bags. I think you can imagine how other commuters usually react to this,” said Atiqah.
The race starts again at 6pm when she ends work as she has to pick both her children up before 7pm to avoid a late penalty. Taking a taxi or Grab is an option, although it can get expensive if done too often.
Some Help Please?
If you’re wondering where this story is leading, we just wanted to tell working mothers like you that there is a bit of a break in the routine you could have fallen into.
We know it’s not easy to always keep a smile while you are tossing work, family and personal responsibilities in equal measures, but let’s hope this will make a difference.
If you’re a union member, look out for the new initiative by Grab and NTUC U Family to provide benefits to working mothers.
The tie-up is part of a new initiative by NTUC U Family called Friends of Working Mums.
For starters, pick up the complimentary Grab rides and GrabFood delivery vouchers worth $9 dollars. All you need to do is apply directly with your union or through NTUC U Family.
Wait, there’s more! Check-in with your employer and union if they have purchased the subsidised corporate packages.
The packages are available as $50 and $100 vouchers that include ride and food delivery discounts worth $69 and $138 respectively.
Commenting on this initiative, Atiqah said: “Any help for us working mothers is welcomed. At least we’re getting some help to cope with the cost of living, especially during months when we’re tight on money.”