Updated: 04/29/2014 01:15

17 trainees started training under the Hawker Master Trainer Pilot Programme

17 trainees started training under the Hawker Master Trainer Pilot Programme

The Hawker Master Trainer pilot programme is well on the way of meeting its target, with another 17 trainees coming on board. 

The year-long programme launched last October, aims to groom 50 hawkers by November this year as part of efforts to preserve Singapore's hawker heritage. 

The Singapore Workforce Development Agency's Director of Tourism Division, Janice Foo, gave an update of the programme. 

"Six months into the programme now we have in fact achieved more than half of the target that we have set out to do. We have 30 trainees on board of the programme out of the 50 local target trainees that we have specified for the programme."

The inaugural batch of 13 trainees showcased their culinary skills and hawker fare at a tasting session today after completing their training. 

One of them is 44-year-old, Sim Poh Gek, who received training from Ji Ji wanton noodle specialist. 

"I think it's a fun programme, I think it's very educational and it really opens up my mind. It's not really what you have seen. All along I was a customer, I've never been a hawker and I wasn't inside to do it. So now when I do it then I realise that's a lot of hard work. Because mentally, physically you have to prepare for the challenges."

She'll be trying out the hawker trade at Amoy Food Centre next month at a stall set aside for the trainees. 

They can work out of these so-called incubation stalls for 12 months before deciding to bid for their own stalls under the National Environment Agency's tender scheme.

Five new trainers have also come on board of the programme. 

They are Casuarina Curry, Fatty Cheong Roasted Meat, Ha Ha Big Prawn Noodle, Hwa Xing Bak Kut Teh and Nam Kee Teo Chew Fish Porridge. 

The five will join the current four trainers in training the second batch over the next few months.

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