Mocha residents laud WIIN initiative
Residents of Mocha, East Bank Demerara on Monday applauded the government on the delivery of exceptional services which will empower and render relief to the members of the community.
The residents expressed their gratitude during a community engagement which provided them with the opportunity to access several government services including old-age pension and public assistance.
Residents were also afforded the opportunity to raise concerns with the staff of the child care and protection agency, the domestic violence unit, and the Women Investment and Innovation Network (WIIN).
Mocha resident, Rosalind Blackman said she was pleased with the visit to the community by the team of officials from the Human Services and Social Security Ministry, and other government agencies.
“I greatly appreciate that the minister is coming out to Mocha to reach out to the women, and men, getting their points of view on certain issues such as the old age pension. We do have a lot of elderly in here who do not have the opportunity to go out …and we do have a lot of disabled people…. So, I was glad that she (the minister) was able to come on that platform,” she said.
She further expressed that the WIIN programme will impact her life significantly.
“I am so glad about the WIIN programme that gives us an idea on how to like start a business…how to run it, and how to actually go about getting it registered. I applied this year. I am going to do garment construction. The programme will benefit me greatly,” she explained.
She added that her mother usually pays over $2000 to sew one school uniform with the cloth provided. She related that by pursuing the garment construction course offered by the PPP/C Administration, she will have the clothing of her siblings, and other children of the community done for half the price.
Another resident, Winnola Ramsay shared similar sentiments on the WIIN programme.
“It’s good. She [minister] can get to talk to the residents one- on -one and see a lot of single-parent mothers. I am one myself. I am very glad that she has a programme offering persons or mothers in need of assistance to help themselves,” she said.
She explained that “you know what they say – women rule the world of today, so it is good, and I am very glad she has staff from other services working on the ground to help persons who can’t even get to move about to visit the ministry. I am very glad and thankful.”
Another Mocha resident, Teshana Matthews said the child care programme will help her to engage differently with her children.
“I feel good about it because you getting to learn more, and you hear new things so I am happy about that. When it comes to me with learning about child care, it helps me to develop better with my three stubborn children, so getting help and learning to focus better on them is better for me,” she added.
Meanwhile, Human Services and Social Security Minister, Dr. Vindhya Persaud said the outreach was conceptualised to sensitise residents on the ministry’s services, and how they can benefit, in an effort to promote community development.
“The intention is to have a great support system from our end and an excellent network among us so, that we can work with you… and you can continue to work with more people within the community so that the impact filters outwards so, that this community can really benefit from the ministry and the community can benefit not only from the training, but the impact in terms of reducing all the social ills,” the minister said.
The minister stated that citizens living with a permanent disability will benefit from the automatic renewal of their public assistance until they are eligible for old-age pension.
A medical report and application are the only requirements needed to benefit from this programme.
Minister Persaud further said that one of her desires is to provide women who complete the WIIN garment construction course with their own sewing machines. She nonetheless encouraged them to participate in the free training course to empower themselves.
“I want you to work on being in the course. There is nothing to prevent you not being in the course. This course is offered to you in person or online. I want women to stop putting themselves in any box. It is time you should step out there, you can and you must. The programme is called WIIN because I want you to win, cross the finish line, finish the course,” the minister said. In addition, 110 women of Mocha have registered for the ministry’s WIIN programme while 72 have already completed the WIIN business workshop.