East Coast residents benefit from core home and home improvement subsidy outreach
The Ministry of Housing and Water’s – Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) on Saturday, hosted a series of outreaches on the East Coast of Demerara for its Adequate Housing and Urban Accessibility Programme (AHUAP).
The activity saw scores of residents from Mon Repos, Lusignan, Good Hope and other targeted neighbouring communities being facilitated with applications and on the spot interviews for Core Home Support and Home Improvement Subsidies.
Minister of Housing and Water, Collin Croal, M.P., and Minister within the Ministry, Susan Rodrigues, M.P., CH&PA’s Chief Executive Officer, Sherwyn Greaves, and other technical staff were on the ground assisting residents with their applications.
Minister Croal explained that the Core Home initiative, a total of 250 low-income homes will be constructed at a cost of approximately $5 Million. Beneficiaries of these homes must possess ownership of the land and are only required to make a contribution of $100,000.
For the Home Improvement Subsidy, he noted that persons living in poor conditions can benefit from $500,000 worth in building materials to carry out repairs or expansion to an existing property.
“This programme targets the vulnerable and so when you hear us speak about affordable housing, adequate housing, it is about ensuring that we cater for all segments of our population,” Minister Croal said.
The ministry has since extended the deadline for applications for the programme from February 7 to February 25, to allow for more persons within the target communities to capitalise on the initiative.
Minister Rodrigues said that the intention is to ensure proper sensitisation on the programme is done within the communities. Outreaches will also be held in areas in Georgetown and on the East Bank of Demerara in the coming weeks.
“We wanted to ensure that we devise a strategy to bring the service to the people, and that is why, even though we set up a separate office on Camp Street to deal specifically with this programme, we are also having these outreaches. So, persons have no excuse as to why they weren’t included,” she noted.
Meanwhile, Greaves announced that based on the overwhelming response, the ministry may have to engage the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the Ministry of Finance to seek an extension of the programme.
“The programme is slated to end at the end of this year and more than likely we will ask for an extension to a further six months to ensure we complete all that we have to do…going forward I see the need for this programme, so we will be going to the ministry of Finance and the IDB to continue this programme,” he said.
The core home support and home improvement initiative falls under the $5.6 billion Adequate Housing and Urban Accessibility Programme funded by the IDB. The programme is designed to upgrade the living conditions of Guyanese through access to better housing and basic infrastructure.