Fatimah (centre) with Salmah (front left) and Sharifah Mordiah (right) at a photocall with with the teachers and other staff of Taska Qaseh Laila 1. Photo: Ramidi Subari

KUCHING: Taska Qaseh Laila has moved to Banglo Bunga Ros in Jalan Bampfylde here.

Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg commended the Single Mothers Association or Persatuan Ibu Tunggal Sarawak (Pitsa) for its success in upgrading the previously-dilapidated bungalow and transforming it into the kindergarten’s new premises. 

“Pitsa has managed to renovate the bungalow well in short period of time, even with insufficient funds.  

“I have been informed that the closed-circuit television (CCTV) system, security hut, drainage system and landscape have not yet been done,” he said in his speech delivered by Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah during the launch of the kindergarten at its premises on Monday (Oct 19).

Also present were Pitsa board of trustees member Datuk Sharifah Mordiah Tuanku Fauzi and Pitsa president Salmah Ibrahim.

The new Taska Qaseh Laila premises was renovated at a cost of RM500,000, a grant allocated to them by the state government.

Previously, it was located at Jalan Ong Tiang Swee and was there for the last seven years. The old building will be taken over by Unit for Other Religions (Unifor).

The kindergarten has another branch known as Taska Qaseh Laila II at Jalan Semariang.

Fatimah releasing balloons to mark the opening of Taska Qaseh Laila 1, while Salmah (left) and Sharifah Mordiah (right) look on. Photo: Ramidi Subari

Abang Johari said the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) state government would continue to take care of the people, especially those from the lower income groups — B40 and M40.

“Amidst Covid-19 crisis, the state government has spent RM2.55 billion to implement three Bantuan Khas Sarawakku Sayang (BKSS) packages to alleviate the difficulties faced by the people. No other states provide such assistance,” he said.

The chief minister added the government had come up with other forms of assistance such as Bantuan Ibu Bersalin (BIB) worth RM450 each for pregnant mothers, Endowment Fund Sarawak (EFS) worth RM1,000 for each newborn Sarawakian baby and the Kenyalang Gold Card (KGC) for senior citizens.

“Parents can also breathe a sigh of relief because children who go to school, especially in Kuching, can now use the free school bus initiative. This service will later be expanded to other cities.

“Those who go to work by bus every day can also save money because the bus service in the city and surrounding areas only charges a fare of RM1, while the rest is borne by the GPS state government,” he added.

Abang Johari hoped Taska Qaseh Laila would set up other branches in Kuching in the future to provide job opportunities to unemployed single mothers.