Minister of Public Works Bishop Juan Edghill MP says the move to inject over $220 million into Region Ten through the ‘Because We Care’ and Uniform and School supplies cash grants is not a “fly-by-night strategy,” but shows the Administration’s sincerity towards the academic growth of Guyana’s children.
The Minister made the statement Thursday morning while addressing over 800 parents at the One Mile Primary School, Upper Demerara-Berbice, during the programme’s launch.
The cash grants initiative provides $19,000 for every child registered in the public school system, with approximately 172,000 students set to benefit countrywide.
“You would recall that in 2014 when we rolled this out, we came to every child in the public school system and we delivered to them $10,000, it was discontinued in 2015 by the then Administration and between 2015 to 2020, there was no cash grant for the children.”
Minister Edghill said the reintroduction of the initiative was carefully organised, and the $3.2 billion set aside for distribution ensures every qualified child receives their cash.
“We know you got bills to pay; you had to spend money for your children SBAs, getting a bicycle for your children to ride to school, getting the book bags, boots, books and all the things that are required.
“We might not be able to do everything, but we believe if we lend some support, it will show you the parents that we are having a real partnership, Government and family for the educating of our children,” Minister Edghill added.
He said the PPP/C Government will never stop investing in Guyana’s children.
“The reintroduction of the ‘Because We Care’ cash grant is the PPP/C Administration’s declaration that we believe in our children, we believe that an educated nation is a nation on its way to development and prosperity, and we believe that the most precious resource in a country is neither oil, gold, diamond, bauxite or the forestry; the most important resource is human,” theMinister asserted to resounding applause.
He congratulated those teachers who continue to host virtual classroom lessons under the pressure of COVID-19 and urged parents to use the cash for its intended purposes.
Meanwhile, one of the parents, Ms. Elisia Daniels, said she welcomed the assistance, explaining that it would help a lot with the struggles she faces when schools reopen.
“I am extremely elated; I am grateful for this cash grant because they are many parents like myself that have multiple children. This is going to be very useful; it’s going to come in very handy. It’s meant for the use of the children for school supply and so on, but they are many other things that parents can use if for that can also benefit the children,” the mother of five said.
Another parent, Ms. Norecia Fordyce, said, “I am very grateful for the cash grant that the Government decide to distribute because being a single parent of eight children, it’s very hard sometimes to find things for them to go out to school. I am fortunate to have at least seven in school.”
For Ms. Ashanti Higgins, Government’s intervention “is a great help for my family.”
The ‘Because We Care’ cash distribution continues tomorrow in the region.