Scores of parents and guardians of Linden, Region 10, who benefitted from the government’s $100, 000 special needs cash grant said the money will go a far way with assisting with purchasing necessary supplies for their children.
The distribution exercise took place at the Watooka Guest House, Linden and was conducted by the Ministry of Human Services and Social Security.
One parent, Nicola Peters expressed appreciation for the initiative since it is difficult for her financially to purchase medications for her children. These injections have to be administered daily which are expensive.
Peters revealed that her daughter who has sickle cell had two attacks of strokes before she was seven years old.
She noted, “I feel so great. I feel so happy because with this $100,000 cash grant, I would buy, at least, six months of injection, as long as it has a long expiry date. So, that she and her brothers and other sisters can get this injection almost every day or almost every other day, instead of once a week that I used to give them before now.
Another recipient, Tinagah Primo said, “This $100,000 is a good thing. I think it’s a very good thing because its going to help me to buy stuff that I can prepare him, to mold him, to prepare him. And some stuff that I would buy him would be like… to help him to see better, you know, like daily stuff.”
Relieved grandparent, Nicole Stephens noted, “I feel good because it’s for my grandson. And he needs it.
She revealed that the cash grant will assist her to purchase school supplies for her grandson.
Meanwhile Kim Durant said, “Well, I feel thankful because it’s a great help for my son.”
In addition, Durant indicated that the special needs cash grant will assist her to purchase additional school supplies and a bicycle for her son.
Meanwhile, Human Services and Social Security Minister, Dr Vindhya Persaud in her address reiterated the government’s commitment to assisting persons with special needs countrywide.
Minister Persaud also clarified what it means to have impaired vision.
“No one has been refused. I know there have been people who came and they have children who wear glasses. And, it’s a common, I suppose, misunderstanding that if your child wears glasses that it’s a permanent disability. That is not so.”
She further explained that permanent disability includes children who are blind, partially blind, or close to blindness, which can be verified with an eye test.
“We managed to clear that up and to make the whole process very seamless, very transparent. There has been a very good doctor on site who has been seeing all of those persons who have queries. But we have managed to assure people, we have managed to see everybody. No one has been turned away,” the minister related.
She extended heartfelt appreciation to the parents and guardians who have plans to utilise the cash grants in the interest of their children
Other initiatives for persons living with disabilities include the establishment of a ‘learning lab’, day and night care facility, and transportation services to take children to and from learning institutions.
The government has allocated $200 million in this year’s budget to offer direct support to persons living with disabilities. (Edited from DPI)