KUCHING: A total of 125 non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in the state have received grants amounting to RM1.291 million.
The recipients included 54 community based rehabilitation centres (PBK), 13 senior citizen activity centres, and 14 senior citizen care centres, which received RM6,000 each.
Minister of Welfare, Community Well Being, Women, Family and Childhood Development Dato Sri Fatimah Abdullah, who presented the grants to five NGOs invited for the handing over ceremony yesterday, said NGOs were hard hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, particularly those providing residential care and rehabilitation for persons with disabilities, as social welfare services were not classified as ‘essential’.
She said many social welfare organisations, including PDKs, could not proceed with their activities and so a catch-up plan is necessary after the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO).
“During these challenging times, NGOs are not allowed to organise any fundraising programme or activity involving crowds. But at the same time, rental of office premises and salary of staff have to be paid.
“Some NGOs, such as the Sibu Autistic Association (SAA), have no choice but to temporarily close their operations,” she said.
In view of their situation, she said the state government through her ministry was giving assistance in the form of grants.
“We sincerely appreciate your contribution thus far, and look forward to collaborate actively with you in the social and welfare programmes, projects, and activities,” she said.