A partnership between the Civil Defence Commission (CDC) and the Guyana Council of Organisations for Persons with Disabilities (GCOPD) will see over 700 persons benefiting from relief hampers during the current COVID-19 epidemic.
The Commission began its distribution exercise Thursday morning. Among the first to benefit from the significant outreach was the Guyana Society for the Blind, Gifted Hands Learning Centre for Special Needs, The Guyana Deaf Association and the Vocational Training Centre for Special Needs at Sophia.
The Visually-impaired Association of Guyana, Guyana Blind Cricket Association, and the New Amsterdam Special Needs School are listed among others to receive supplies.
Supervising the operations, Director-General of the CDC, Lieutenant-Colonel Kester Craig explained that the Commission has been in communication with the organisation for the past two weeks to identify and prioritise the various beneficiaries.
“Today we started a series of distribution to over 18 organisations that represent people living with disabilities. These supplies will ease some of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic,” he remarked.
Colonel Craig said in some instances the supplies will be distributed directly to the organisation but the Commission will also aid in the delivery to some communities with the assistance of the CDC staffs and volunteers.
Programme coordinator of the GCOPD, Ganesh Singh, welcomed the donations. He told DPI that over 700 persons with disabilities who are affiliated with the council will receive the hampers.
“This will be of great assistance because persons with disabilities (PWDs), like other Guyanese, were severely affected. Most of them are unemployed, so they are even more affected by the COVID-19 crisis. This is a great help!” Singh remarked.
He pointed out that the organisation has received several calls from PWDs seeking assistance, but noted that currently only registered members can benefit from the hampers. “After this, we can look at registering more people and assistance can be given to them in the future,” Singh noted.
According to Marcia Smith, Founder and Principal of Gifted Hands Learning Centre for Special Needs, the donations will be a blessing to her 24 students. “I thank the government of Guyana and the CDC for honouring my application…. It will benefit a lot.”
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