The Ministry of Social Welfare, Children and Poverty Alleviation has established a permanent office in Vunisea, Kadavu in its quest to improve accessibility of government?s social welfare services in the maritime zone.
Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Hon Rosy Akbar said this is a milestone development which emanated from the Minister?s public consultation on the island last year.
?A full time staff with office facilities will commence this week in Vunisea to service the whole of Kadavu. These will enable the faster processing of social welfare applications and expand community reach out to address social welfare issues and uplift the government services in Kadavu,? she said.
?Through internal reshuffling, an officer was identified for the initial posting. Currently there are 654 beneficiaries of the social welfare programs namely Poverty Benefit Scheme, Care and Protection Program and Social Pension Scheme on the island. Apart from processing of social welfare applications, the officer will also conduct program reviews with more emphasis given to the child protection programs.?
Mrs Akbar reiterated that having a dedicated officer in Vunisea will increase accessibility to government?s information services.
?The officer will work together with other ministries to facilitate developmental programs that synergize for poverty alleviation.? This will include the implementation and monitoring of Ministry?s livelihood and income generating projects.? The landscape of Kadavu means the officer will undertake road and sea travel. Ministry will provide sea transportation and high-tech communication equipment to support the work carried out on the island,? she said.
?There will be greater opportunities created for communities to access income generating support, counseling and making more leverage on self-reliance as the way forward for better family livelihoods.
?It is anticipated that the response time to applications for social protection programs will be reduced significantly and it will be more clientele friendly too.?