‘It is not easy, but the cash will help me to provide more care’ – Parent

As Govt continues to roll out its $100, 000 cash grant for children living with disabilities

The PPP/C Government’s Cash Grant Programme for persons living with disabilities is changing the lives of parents who are finding it difficult to provide care and other medical services for their children.

On Friday, the government initiative saw parents receiving a total of $100, 000 from the Human Services and Social Security Ministry at the La Grange Masjid, East Bank Demerara. 

Parent, Collette Higgins, at the special needs $100,000 cash grant distribution

Speaking with the Department of Public Information (DPI), Ramanre Balwang who is a mother of one, expressed gratitude for the initiative. Her child attends the special needs school at Schonoord.

She explained it is not easy to look after a child living with a disability, but she insists that with the right form of government assistance that is now being offered, it is manageable.

Balwang noted that she is not working currently and cannot afford the additional expense to hire an at-home babysitter.

She explained too that she spends her time managing her child reasonably well.

 “So, I try my best to manage with him and I want him to get better, that’s why I took the initiative to be at home,” she explained while stating that the cash grant is timely.

“Well, I’m so happy and thankful. And I hope that the parents make use of it because it’s a good initiative that the government is doing. Because having a special needs child is not easy and at least, the grant will help us,” she stated.  

Meanwhile, another relieved parent, Tracy Pariaug lauded the initiative, highlighting how it would help many parents to cope with these situations.

Tracy Pariaug and her son

“I would like to thank the government and our President for this investment and grant to special needs. We are looking forward for more investments and resources for special needs. This grant will go a long way because taking care of a special need is very expensive. This grant will go a long way. Thank you so much,” she said.

Addressing concerns

Human Services and Social Security Minister, Dr Vindhya Persaud was at the location to assure the parents and guardians that the ministry is working relentlessly to assist.

For persons who have yet to uplift their monies, Minister Persaud noted if their names were not on the first list, they will be on the second list and provided the locations for disbursement.

Human Services and Social Security Minister, Dr Vindhya Persaud and one of the parents at the one-off special needs $100,000 cash grant distribution

Dr Persaud also listened to other concerns of the parents and guardians about the challenges they face daily with the provision of care for their children living with disabilities.

Minister Persaud stated, “we’re also looking at training people to provide day and night care. I know that people who look after children with special needs. Sometimes, you get very tired because it’s very challenging. So, when we open day and night care services, those persons who run them will be trained”.

She explained further,

So, that you can leave your children safely, get a little break, and come back and get them. I know these are simple things but they are big things for you. And we’re also looking at easy access to support aides – if you need wheelchairs…hearing aids. All of those things, just reach out to our ministry and we’ll provide them free of cost.”

Dr Persaud then announced that pampers will be provided for the special needs children.

The special needs one-off cash grant is part of the government’s manifesto commitment to providing support to vulnerable groups. 

Parents and guardians at the special needs $100,000 cash grant distribution

To further supply support to persons living with disabilities the government is building an institution called the learning lab for them to be upskilled.  From the budgetary allocation to the sector, new and improved healthcare facilities will be built to help persons living with disabilities, among other things.