Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah

By Noor Syahhira Hady

KUCHING: Ninety-seven percent of the registered early childhood institutions in the state have applied for the special annual grant (GTK) this year.

Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah said that the RM16 million had been disbursed to 3,105 institutions as of Sept 30 this year.

“The institutions are given a total of RM5,000 each for them to provide nutritious food to the children sent to the registered nurseries and kindergartens.

“The money is also used to help the institutions provide fun learning tools and environment for the children. We do allow the institutions to do digital learning and online learning for the learning process,” she said at the launch of the new building of Taska Qaseh Laila I at Jalan Bampfylde here on Monday (Oct 19).

According to Fatimah, children love to learn as long as it is taught in a fun learning way.

“This fund is also to help teachers or caregivers who need to attend workshops to gain more knowledge on early childhood learning.

Fatimah added that the grants were also given to fund activities parents and teachers had with the children.

“Early childhood learning is very important for the children. That is why the ministry has published a guidebook entitled ‘Panduan Asuhan di Rumah’ (Home Care Guide) for parents and single mothers who do not want to send their children who are below the age of 2 or 3 to the nurseries.

“The book contains guidelines on development of a child from 0 month up to 4 years old. It also covers topics on breastfeeding, childcare practices, safety, nutrition that the child needs, and hygiene and cleanliness of a child.  

“Parents, especially first-time mothers, will find this pictorial book easier to understand. It is published in the Malay Language, Chinese as well as Iban,” she added.

The book is given to the recipients of the Bantuan Ibu Bersalin (BIB). Those who wish to have a copy can get it from Fatimah’s ministry office.