Homes for differently- abled in two years | Daily News

Homes for differently- abled in two years

Minister S. B. Dissanayake presenting a wheelchair to a differently-abled person.
Minister S. B. Dissanayake presenting a wheelchair to a differently-abled person.

Our aim is to end the suffering of homeless differently-abled persons within the next two years. First, we have to change the mindset of the people to make them think that differently-abled persons are equal to others. They only need love. There are many homeless differently-abled persons across the country, stated Minister of Social Empowerment, Welfare and Kandyan Heritage S. B. Dissanayake at the national celebrations of Elder’s International Day on December 3 at Diwulapitiya.

“We are collecting the relevant census through Samurdhi officers, Samurdhi managers, social service officers, development officers and Grama Niladharis. We have already handed over 10 houses to them in the Divulapitiya Divisional Secretariat. The programme will continue in all divisional secretariats in Sri Lanka, the Minister said.

He added that the Budget allocation by past governments for differently-abled persons was poor. “We are planning to allocate more money for them in the Budget 2018 after discussing with the Cabinet. We will also hold discussions with 23 ministries. We will negotiate with them to provide more facilities to them,” he said.

They will be provided with a good service by establishing new centres with modern facilities, he said.

The Samurdhi campaign will assist programmes for differently-abled persons. We are strengthening Samurdhi Banks which were financially damaged by previous administrations for the last 10 years.

We will provide leasing facilities, pawning facilities, instant loan facilities and stock loan facilities through Samurdhi Banks and those banks will be modernized with digitalization. We will spend money on programmes to educate and empower differently-abled persons until they find a job, the Minister said.

“We are conducting a national concert called ‘Sith Ru’ which is coloured by differently-abled persons. Apart from that, we are conducting a national sports meet for them, which will directly link with Paralympics. Record holders of national sports meets will be sent to international events. We are planning to build centres for differently-abled persons, especially in the war affected areas,” he added.

Today we are paying about Rs. 3,000 as a monthly allowance for 30,000 persons but about 67,000 have newly applied. Still, we are working on it and at least 10,000 differently-abled persons will be getting the allowance soon.

Deputy Minister Ranjan Ramanayake, Western Province Governor K. C. Logeswaran, MP Dr. Kavinda Jayawardane, MP Ajith Mannapperuma, Provincial Ministers Chandana Jayakodi, Kithsiri Manchanayake, Dr. Rasia Pendise and political leaders, NGO leaders and officers participated.


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