Mon | Aug 21, 2017

Government gives support to persons with disabilities

Published:Saturday | April 23, 2016 | 4:00 AM

A sum of $70 million has been earmarked in the 2016-2017 Estimates of Expenditure for the continuation of the Social and Economic Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities project.

The project, which started in December 2012, is being implemented by the Ministry of Labour and Social Security with funding provided by the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

It aims to increase the employability and skills of poor persons with disabilities between the ages of 18 and 36 years, as well as improve special-education support to poor children with disabilities up to six years old.

As stated in the Estimates currently before the House of Representatives, the allocation for this fiscal year will go towards the procurement of a management information system model, adaptive equipment, and teaching and learning aids for the Early Stimulation Programme (ESP).

TARGETS TO BE MET

Other targets are the staging of parenting-support workshops targeting parents of children who are beneficiaries of the ESP; engagement of a speech therapist to assist some 200 children enrolled in the programme; continuation of a staff development and capacity building workshop with ESP staff; and completion of a labour market study.

Additionally, a skills training and employment component will be launched during the period to benefit 190 persons with disabilities ages 18 to 36 years old.

Additionally, several skills training and employment interventions will be undertaken to engage at least 150 persons with disabilities on the Programme of Advancement through Health and Education (PATH).

TRAINING AND EMPLOYMENT STATISTICS

Up to December 2015, 201 persons with disabilities were trained in various skills interventions; 123 received employment for six months, and 34 received permanent employment under the initiative.

Five consultant contracts were signed in October to provide training services for 190 persons with disabilities on PATH.

Other achievements include completion of the first of several skills training interventions, needs assessment and review of the ESP. A physiotherapist was engaged to provide rehabilitative care to children with disabilities, and 14 assistive aids were procured for children on PATH. Additionally, a curriculum for a parenting-intervention programme was developed.

The project is slated to end in December 2016.