Can I survive on $5 a day? The answer is probably no, unless I’m eating at home for the whole day. If I had only $5 to spend on transport, breakfast, lunch and dinner it would definitely not be enough. Plus that fact that I am currently being charged adult fare for my MRT and bus rides which goes up to a dollar plus. To solve the problem of the high priced trips I had to purchase concession for my card which costs $25 for MRT rides alone and I think around $50 plus for both MRT and bus rides. The concession card is a monthly purchased “upgrade” for the usual MRT cards.
The other day I took the challenge and I have to say that I failed. My lunch was already $6.20 and it is the sandwich you see below, because I was working that day and the area around me had quite pricey food. I also bought a cup of yogurt which was $4.50 exceeding the amount by $5.70 already. I was using concession card so my transport was “free”. Honestly, food is quite pricey these days probably because of the rising economy. Everything is expensive in fact. A meal at MacDonald’s already costs $5 which is the amount some low income families in Singapore have to spend on both food and transport a day. Singapore was ranked the sixth most expensive cities to live in, in 2012. I was very shocked that Singapore was ranked 26th out of 136 in the world for income inequality. I had no idea a lot of Singaporeans were not as well of as others. There are over 105,000 families who earn an average of $1500 monthly and hence left with $5 to spend on transport and food. I did not realize this was so bad to the extend that people only have $5 to spend and the fact that some of my friend’s always complain about how they do not have enough money when they have more that $5 each day.
I feel that the $5 challenge allows people to realize and understand how the less fortunate people feel and how we can help stop poverty in Singapore. This challenge has opened my eyes to many things and how I take things for granted sometimes. I would recommend this challenge to my friends and raise the awareness of possible poverty in Singapore. It is very hard to survive on just $5 a day to me and hence makes me feel bad to those who only have $5 to spend because of the income their family generates. I hope more people are aware of this and maybe take to challenge too.