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New $172M elderly home for Enmore – Kaieteur News

Kaieteur News – Part of its plans to continue to care for the elderly, this year, the government is looking to spend $172 million, to build a new care home for senior citizens at Enmore on the East Coast of Demerara (ECD).

This was announced on Monday by Senior Minister with the responsibility for Finance, Dr. Ashni Singh who presented the 2024 national budget at the National Assembly.  Singh in his presentation said that having invested in a number of services for the elderly in the past, this year a number of specific interventions are targeted at improving the quality of life enjoyed by those who have already contributed their more active years to the country.

Speaking of the elderly, the minister said that they provided home-based care to 6,167 elderly persons in Regions Two, Three, Four, Six, Nine and 10 and in 2024, they plan to target 8,500 individuals who will benefit from this service. Providing care for them also, he highlighted that last year, 736 persons were trained through the Women’s Innovation and Investment Network (WIIN) Programme to provide care services to the senior population in all 10 regions. That and more initiatives will continue this year to care for the elderly he added.

It was presented on Monday that the sum of $48.3 billion is budgeted to continue ongoing and new initiatives in social services. Of this allocation, money will also go towards initiatives targeting better facilities, services, and jobs to improve the well-being of persons with disabilities (PWDs), including children.

Minister Singh briefed that in 2023, 98 PWDs received training in Job Access with Speech and computer skills at the newly constructed Mahaica Disability Complex and, in 2024, an additional 396 PWDs will receive training. Last year too, he said 465 PWDs were provided with assistive aids and another 600 PWDs will benefit in 2024. Also, nine buses which were procured in 2023 to facilitate transportation of PWDs will be delivered this year. Additionally, in 2023, 797 children received special needs services and 2,299 teachers were trained in Special Education Needs/Disabilities at the Cyril Potter College of Education (CPCE). This year, the service will continue and target more persons.

Another area the allocation would address he highlighted, is victims of Domestic Violence. He mentioned that the government will continue to expand access to legal aid services for persons across the country, and strengthen and enforce legislation on trafficking in persons.

Already he explained, two domestic violence shelters were upgraded and expanded in Regions Two and Six to accommodate additional women leaving abusive relationships.

He noted that in partnership with Non-Governmental Organisation (NGOs) over 385 survivors were provided with shelter and counselling services, and over 2,451 persons including victims of domestic violence were provided with legal aid services.

According to the Senior Minister, having passed the Combating of Trafficking in Persons Act in 2023, a Family Violence Bill and a Protection from Harassment Bill have been drafted and will be placed for consideration on the legislative agenda this year.

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