KUCHING: The Ministry of Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development (KWKPK) has provided over RM5.6 million worth of food aid to people affected by the Covid-19 pandemic as of February this year.
The food aid was provided to several areas under the enhanced movement control order (EMCO), said KWKPK Minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah during a press conference here today.
“In 2020, 4,196 packs of dry food, valued at RM209,800, were given to Kampung Haji Baki residents when lockdown was implemented there.
“As of February 2021, 65,984 packs of dry food, valued at RM5,638,339, have been given to those affected by lockdowns. These included Sentosa Phase II Resettlement Scheme and Town Villa housing and flat area in Sibu Jaya, Sibu as well as Kampung Sungai Maong in Kuching, Taman Univista in Samarahan and Kampung Emperoh Jambu in Padawan,” she said.
Fatimah pointed out that logistics were a challenge, especially for areas outside the city.
“We work with relevant authorities to distribute the food. There are risks for our staff as they have to enter high-risk areas, but they wear personal protective equipment (PPE) and follow standard operating procedures (SOPs).
“I would like to thank and congratulate them for doing their job with dedication as well as for cooperating well with other agencies and the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC),” she said.
Fatimah also shared the aid statistics for flood victims for last year as well as this year.
“A total of 84 cases, comprising 5,895 families, were given assistance last year and this amounted to RM837,840.70 worth of food aid.
“As of February 2021, 156 cases (8,493 families) that were not relocated and 114 cases (1,880 families) that were relocated to temporary flood evacuation centres have received aid. This amounted to RM2,568,731.10 in expenditure,” she said.
With regard to the state government’s initiative through KWKPK (Cradle to Grave), Fatimah presented the report for year 2020 and shared this year’s statistics up to February.
The initiatives included Endowment Fund Sarawak (EFS), Bantuan Ibu Bersalin (BIB), Geran Tahunan Khas (GTK) Institusi Pendidikan Awal Kanak-Kanak (IPAKK), Kenyalang Gold Card (KGC), Bantuan Ihsan Kematian (BIK) and Bantuan Pesakit Buah Pinggang (BPBP).
The state government introduced EFS —RM1,000 for every Sarawak-born child starting January 2019 — and 3,170 (84 percent) out of 3,796 babies are registered under EFS as of February 2021.
“Last year, there were 31,176 babies and 26,478 (85 percent) of them were registered under EFS. Although the number of babies decreased compared to 33,304 in 2019, the percentage of registration is higher as only 26,731 (80 percent) were registered for that year.
“As for BIB, 23,564 (81 percent) from 29,727 mothers were registered in the previous year while as of February this year, 3,538 (92 percent) from 3,846 mothers are registered,” she said.
Fatimah added that the application for GTK IPAKK of RM5,000 would open in April, and the grant was given to 2,958 (97 percent) IPAKKs last year compared to 2,868 (91 percent) in 2019.
“In 2020, 197,797 applications were received for KGC and this year, there are 544 so far. BIK is given to a KGC’s heir and 2,420 applications have been approved with payment totalling RM7,260,000 for 2020 and as of February 2021 combined.
“Sixty-six applications were approved for BPBP last year and until February this year, 13 more applications were approved. This initiative is to ease the burden of kidney patients from the B40 and M40 groups. It includes treatment and support,” she said.