One hundred and four persons with disabilities in the Atebubu-Amantin Municipality in the Bono East Region have benefited from some income generating support items and cash at a brief ceremony in Atebubu.
Welcoming the beneficiaries to the ceremony, the Municipal Director of the Department of Social Welfare and Community Development, Mr. Emmanuel Bukari, said about 900 disabled persons were currently registered with his outfit.
He indicated that the fund had assisted the disabled in the municipality in diverse ways, including education and healthcare, adding that it was currently supporting two blind persons at the University of Cape Coast.
Mr. Bukari reminded all that section 37 of the Disability Act made it an offence for anyone to mock a disabled person using his or her infirmity, and urged service providers to consider the needs of the disabled when planning their activities.
Making the presentation, the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE), Mr. Edward Owusu, said the government, out of concern for the welfare of the disabled, increased their share of the Common Fund from two to three percent on the assumption of office in 2017.
He urged all who had not benefited under the current arrangement to exercise patience, since they would eventually have their turn.
The MCE asked all potential beneficiaries who had not registered with the Department of Social Welfare and Community Development to do so.
Twenty beneficiaries went home with deep freezers, with two, each receiving block making machines, fufu pounding and knitting machines, while one has an oven and a gas cylinder.
Twelve beneficiaries who intended to get into various vocations received hair dryers, weaving tools, welding and sewing machines, together with cash, ranging between GH¢1,000 and GH¢1,500, to pay for their apprenticeship.
One beneficiary received GH¢4,500, and 23 others received GH¢2000 each, to pursue petty trading, while 10 beneficiaries took home GH¢2,000.00 each for crop farming, with nine receiving GH¢1,200.00 each for animal farming. Twenty-two others received support for education and healthcare.
Mr. Sulemana Shaibu, Chairman of the local branch of the Ghana Federation of the Disabled, on behalf of the beneficiaries, thanked the government and the Municipal Assembly for the gesture, and urged parents and guardians to desist from hiding their disabled children from the public, since they may have some potentials in them which could be unearthed given the needed support.
Nana Kwabena Kyere, Adontenhene of the Atebubu Traditional Area and acting President of the Atebubu traditional Council, who chaired the function, urged the beneficiaries to put the items to the intended use to benefit themselves and their families.