Help for single mothers in malaysia: 5 Initiatives for WOMEN You Didn’t Know About!

Poor Malaysian households headed by widows, single moms struggle the most amid COVID-19 pandemic

Passengers at a bus station in Kuala Lumpur on Aug 11, 2020.PHOTO: REUTERS

KUALA LUMPUR — When Malaysia went into a partial lockdown in March because of a sudden spike of coronavirus cases, single parent Naimah Sudaian was left out of job with zero savings to survive the coming months.

With three children to raise, the 49-year-old was dumbfounded as to how she was going to afford rent and groceries after being laid off as a security guard that month.

“I remember going home that day, crying. I have no savings to get me going and with my last pay cheque of RM1,200 (S$394), I carefully planned our expenses,” Madam Naimah told The Straits Times.

“We had to ration our food and survive mostly on crackers and instant noodles. Occasionally, we would have rice and eggs because that is the cheapest ‘real meal’ we can afford,” she said.

She was not alone in struggling to make ends meet during the movement control order (MCO) to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

The research of United Nations agencies found that households with family heads earning below RM2,000 a month tend to spend more on eggs (52 per cent) and instant noodles (40 per cent), and less on protein and rice, compared with those earning above the bracket.

When Malaysia first imposed movement curbs on March 18, it forced schools and non-essential businesses to temporarily shut down. People were confined to their homes except to buy food or essential items or to seek medical treatment.

These controls were eased on May 4, allowing most businesses to reopen and people to travel for work.

But despite life having returned to normal in most cases in Malaysia, the impact of the MCO has been damaging.

According to the UN study titled “Families On The Edge”, low-income households headed by women like widows and single mothers are among the worst affected, with higher rates of unemployment and a pessimistic outlook on prospects for recovery in the next six months.

And although there were various forms of government assistance given during the MCO, cash assistance was regarded as the most useful. The respondents also preferred sustainable assistance such as employment, and longer-term aids rather than just one-off cash handouts.

“Cash handouts help, but one-off assistance is not sustainable. In particular, they want jobs. So it is not a (culture of asking for government handouts),” Malaysia-based public policy research outfit DM Analytics managing director Muhammed Abdul Khalid told financial news site The Edge on Monday (Aug 24).

“They are very proud, responsible and rational people,” he added.

With a sample of 500 households with children in Kuala Lumpur’s low-cost flats, the research also revealed that the urban poor were forced to cut back spending on their children’s education by as much as 84 per cent.

Children living in these households are at risk of deteriorating dietary quality because of changes in their food consumption and a worsening of education outcomes due to challenges in accessing home-based online learning.

Furthermore, Unicef Malaysia social policy chief Stephen Barrett said, a large proportion of low-income children face more challenges when they eventually go back to school after the MCO.

“It is a known fact that hungry children do not learn properly. So there is a risk that low-income children may end up not going back to school,” Mr Barrett was quoted as saying by news site the Malay Mail Online.

“Coupled with the rising instances of child poverty and general malnutrition in Malaysia, Covid-19 will further exacerbate these disparities between lower-income households and their higher-income counterparts despite the efforts of the government to close these disparities,” he added.

As for Madam Naimah, she is doing odd jobs today, including washing dishes at a restaurant in Selangor. She gets about RM100 to RM300 a week, depending on luck.

Her three children, aged five, eight and 11, are not attending school for now. “The last thing I want is for them to get sick,” she said.



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Know a Malaysian single mom who needs help? Here’s where she can go

Mother’s Day is this 8th May. Bought your gifts yet? Good, good, anak mithali. *pats head* While we spoil our mothers with spa vouchers and ‘I Love Mom’ mugs, let’s remember the single mothers out there who have it so much harder raising children all by themselves.

Image from wayfair.com

But they don’t have to struggle alone. If you know a single mom or dad who needs help, there are organisations in Malaysia who give aid, like the Jabatan Kebajikan, or even groups on Facebook here and here, and then there are NGOs like this one called Jumble Station (JS).

 

Jumble Station helps single parents pay for their children’s education

And they give free tuition at their Reading Station. Image from JS

In fact, they even help certain families pay rental, electric bills, groceries, and give them allowance!

We spoke to Adrian Ong, General Manager of Jumble Station (JS) and he has a super interesting story to tell. Ok first off, he is a ‘single dad’ himself to three fostered kids, Farah Nisha, Natasha and Diyana. But that’s another story la…

Adrian with his foster kids. Image from JS

Anyway, back to JS, it’s a community program by Parents Without Partners (an NGO), founded by Sanice Yap, Mary Anne Tan and Lim Lian See. JS collects old junk and sells them to raise funds for the education of single parents’ children. (Only in certain cases they take care of the immediate needs of families…)

“Some of them have overdue rentals, bas sekolah fees, school fees, etc. So they will refer to us. Or they have outstanding water bills, but we will ask to see the bill.” – Adrian

Their coordinator Jayapratha goes from house to house to interview them. For example, if someone’s husband passed away, they will check the death certificate, or the divorce cert, the electric and water bills, etc. to verify their needs. If they can, JS will try to see to their immediate physical needs, though Adrian stressed that they mainly aim to raise funds for the kids’ education.

Speaking of education, JS has its own Reading Station at USJ1, Subang Jaya, where they give free tuition to poor children and children of single parents. Currently they need volunteers 😀 Know anyone who can teach English? Contact Jaya at 019-233 1730 (9am – 5pm) or email [email protected]. They also have non-conventional education, like teaching kids how to make robots and single mothers how to sew…

 

JS also thinks long-term…by teaching single parents to stand on their own feet

Nani kick-started her ayam berempah business with a lil bit of help. Image from JS

Single mother Rusnani is one of their success cases. Nani, who has six kids, had a spouse who was a drug addict that abandoned her while she was expecting their last child. However, she got skill – cooking yummy ayam berempah and nasi kukus! JS helped her raise RM3,000 to buy a van so that she could start a food business and some of you might know the stall as Farni’s. Here’s a food review written by Rebecca Saw with all the delish details.

As for those who don’t have a skill like Nani, don’t worry, can learn wan. JS conducts sewing classes for single parents. If you know any single parent interested in picking up this new skill, contact Adrian at 016-220 2958. As we got deeper into the conversation, he told us about his heartbreaking past… he was cheated by his partner and lost his money.

“Mary-Anne (one of JS’s co-founders) mentored me until I was back on my feet. There are a lot of people who need help. At the end of the day, I’m very happy to have people in my life.” – Adrian

When it comes to charity, it’s so important to have people who love, care and understand. Because he went through a harsh phase in life, he was able to put himself in the shoes of those who are downtrodden.

 

Single parents suffer depression, but they are LEAST helped group in Malaysia

Statement made by the Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development. Screenshot of article from The Star

Here are a couple of points that might make you rethink the single parent situation in this country. First of all, the latest census shows there are 831,860 women who are single moms. That’s A LOT of women raising kids all on their own! Of this number, fewer than 60,000 (or 8%) received aid. 🙁

“This is primarily because single mums do not live in a special home or a designated location, they live on their own and do their best to bring up their children in whatever way they can.” – JS wrote in a blog post

Secondly, if you think single moms have it bad, single DADS seemingly have it worse! JS finds that society usually expects single dads to be strong and deal with it…but what happens if the dad is illiterate and lacks skills? This was the harsh reality that hit Sandra Babu (pronounced Chandra), ever since his wife who suffered from asthma, died in her sleep in 2007. He became a single dad to his nine kids overnight.

Finding a job was mission impossible – up to one point he even contemplated suicide. It was the thought of his kids that stopped him. But today, Sandra works as a lorry driver using JS’s lorry. (If you ever need a lorry, can call Adrian at 016-220 2958.)

Sandra and his seven boys. His daughters were sent to live at a shelter. Image from JS

Thirdly, (like Sandra) most single parents in Malaysia are single because their spouse passed away, abandoned them, or they are divorced, reports the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

 

Have the heart to help single parents? Here’s what you can do…

To reiterate what Adrian told us, it’s important to have people who have a heart that cares and understands. If you feel you have the heart for single parents, Jumble Station could always use the extra hands in these few areas 🙂 :

  1. Teaching English tuition – Contact Jaya at 019-233 1730 (9am-5pm) / [email protected]
  2. Donate items (ie. electronics, furniture, kitchenware, clothes, books, etc.) – For DROP-OFFS go to Recycle Centre, Level P1, Jaya One, Petaling Jaya. For PICK-UPS (big items) call Adrian at 016-220 2958

For other things, you can also contact Sanice Yap at 016-273 2000. Ok we’ll stop with the phone numbers now before erbodeh pening.  😛

So how many hands do you think it takes to raise children now? If you used to think a minimum of four hands, talk to these single parents, they will show you it’s possible with two.

Single mothers during MCO: What they struggled with, what we can learn and how the govt can help | Malaysia

A customer buying a groceries at a supermarket in Cyberjaya April 5, 2020. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon

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KUALA LUMPUR, May 10 — When Malaysia went into lockdown from March 18 with all non-essential businesses, including childcare centres and kindergartens, ordered to close, single parents were the most hard hit.

Malay Mail spoke to four single working mothers in the Klang Valley about how things were for them during the movement control order (MCO).

Despite their own personal challenges, these four women continued paying for their children’s daycare and school fees during the lockdown even either no or partial services offered.

Here are their experiences:

1. Sonia*

Sonia, 39, is a doctor who has been working as a frontliner in a hospital here for a large part of the lockdown; she is lucky to have a babysitter care for her toddler when she is out working.

Still, there was an incident at a supermarket they had visited previously during the lockdown period without problems.

Along with her child (both wearing face masks), she was denied entry into the supermarket by a security guard, prompting her to explain that she could not leave her young child alone at the supermarket entrance.

“I didn’t care because I knew there was no other way out. .. not to mention stares and weird looks from people. We both were wearing masks, it was just a quick dash in and out,” she said, noting that she was out in under 10 minutes after paying for the two food items required.

At the time of the incident, the government had yet to relax rules where only one person from each family was allowed to go out to buy food and daily necessities.

Sonia highlighted the need for flexibility depending on the circumstances: “Because as it is, you are one person and you have so many restrictions and people don’t seem to get it… that special circumstances are all around us… it’s good to be rigid but then again, there are times it doesn’t apply to everyone.”

Just like other parents, one of the biggest challenges for Sonia is her child’s frustration at being cooped up inside all the time… not being able to go out to play or see her friends in kindergarten.

2. Angela*

Angela, 30, who cares for her two-year-old daughter alone (her parents and in-laws do not live in the Klang Valley) had a similar experience where a grocery store manager refused entry to her and her child during the MCO.

“I said I’m a single mum, I don’t have anyone to take care of my child, I can’t leave her home alone. She just did not listen, said only one person allowed to buy groceries so I cannot bring my kid.

“The store manager said I’m here, you can leave her here. How can I trust a stranger to take care of a two-year-old toddler? I caused quite a scene. 

“They eventually allowed me in but it was quite embarrassing, like people were judging us, as if I endangered my daughter’s life,” Angela said, but added that subsequent visits have been pleasant after she wrote to the store which responded to her immediately.

With her child’s daycare centre closed during the MCO, Angela said it has been challenging to work from home and attend virtual meetings while tending to her child’s needs.

“It’s impossible for me to even find time to cook. It’s impossible to save on food expenses while working and taking care of a child alone. 

“Expenses on Grab (food delivery) are very, very costly we definitely can’t meet the minimum spend to get the discount,” she said, noting that sometimes she tries to meet the minimum spend required for discounts by ordering for lunch and dinner in one delivery.

Angela said the minimum meal price available under such food deliveries would typically be above RM10 and be in the range of RM15 to RM20 at minimum, with daily food delivery expenses possibly RM50 a day inclusive of deliveries: “I usually don’t spend that much on food in a month.”

Although she has received discounts from her child’s daycare centre, she has also been spending more money stocking up on diapers and milk in case she cannot not go out to buy more.

Although it will be a relief when daycare centres reopen, she has some questions and may ask to continue working from home if she feels the daycare centre’s precautionary measures are insufficient: “They said daycare centres can start opening but with proper SOP in place, but how do they ensure proper social distancing between toddlers? They are not going to stay apart.”

3. CY

CY, 43, said her challenge during the MCO was “having to juggle working from home, having my son at home and preparing meals, house chores on a daily basis”, as her child’s kindergarten was closed and her part-time cleaner barred by the condominium management from coming.

“The biggest challenge is that I had to change my role very quickly from my professional work self to being a mother and a teacher as well. My son is five and he is not old enough to attend online learning alone, and the school’s teaching materials require parental involvement at large. This is rather draining,” the business consultant said.

Her income had also been cut even before the MCO started, due to the economic pressure from the Covid-19 pandemic as she works for a Hong Kong-based company.

She has continued to pay her part-time cleaner, as well as her child’s kindergarten which has offered some rebates and replacement school days in the future.

CY said policymakers should allow for flexibility in rules based on exceptions instead of taking a one-size-fits-all approach, as no policy would be able to cover all demographics.

“I’d like to see an awareness of ‘atypical’ households like single parent households in the rules or policy announced during any crisis. For example, grocery shopping can be stressful to plan because there’s no childcare available. 

“Also for single parents who work full time, employers perhaps can grant leave in lieu during this period so that we can have the option of taking a limited number of paid leave during this period,” she said, adding that her employer has been understanding in this aspect by letting her take some time off for her duties at home.

“Another help would be the understanding of schools when they devise any online teaching, that for a single working parent it can be extremely taxing,” she said.

4. Abigail Lo

Abigail Lo, 33, said the challenge she faced during the MCO was getting everything done without help; squeezing in full-time work while cooking, cleaning, tidying and being present for her four-year-old child with the kindergarten not operating.

“I was luckier than most as I still had dedicated working hours but far reduced,” the marketing and communications professional said.

Going for groceries was also a “nightmare” with one supermarket almost refusing her entry as she had her son with her and only let her in after the manager’s approval.

Another grocery store asked her to leave her child with the security guard but this was eventually resolved with one of the staff members helping her get the items on her shopping list.

“Later into the MCO after it became difficult to shop with my son, a neighbour helped me to do my groceries,” she said.

She has kept paying the kindergarten despite her son’s disinterest in online classes during the MCO, as she wants the school to remain in operation in the future.

Lo, who is also the vice-chair of non-profit organisation “ibu Family Resource Group” which offers support, resources and information to families in Kuala Lumpur, suggested that the government and policymakers start by identifying the needs of single parents if they want to help.

“My experience during this MCO is as if single parents don’t exist. We’re not represented at the higher levels of policy making. Single dads even less so. Single parents need a lot of support. Flexibility in working hours, and where we work.”

She also suggested financial assistance for single parents, or discounts on essential services depending on their income bracket.

*Names have been changed as requested.

Resource and Help for Single Parents in College

The number of student parents who have enrolled in college has doubled over the past decade. And of those 4.3 million students with children, over 3.5 million of them are single parents. Single parents, more than any other group of college students, face some of the toughest hurdles to earning their degree. 

Over 88 percent of student parents work full-time, yet their incomes are at or below the poverty level. 

From the high cost of child care to lack of time to devote to their studies while juggling a full-time job, many of these factors contribute to the high dropout rate among single parents attending college. 

While these individuals are often more motivated to earn their degree and get better grades than some of their peers, it’s the lack of time and resources that cause many student parents to drop out. 

Single parents deserve to have an equal footing in their pursuit of the degree. However, many of these students are unaware of some of the programs that are available to help them stay in school and graduate college with a degree that helps them achieve their goals. 

To help level the playing field, here are several tips and resources for single parents who need help to stay in college and earn their degree. 

Child Care Access Means Parents in School (CCAMPIS) Program

A report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) revealed that of the 4.3 million parents attending college, 52 percent dropout of college before they can earn their degree. One of the chief contributing factors to these high dropout rates is the lack of affordable child care available to single parents in college. 

To combat this problem, the U.S. Department of Education created the Child Care Access Means Parents in School (CCAMPIS) program. The program is designed to provide colleges with funding for on-campus child care services to help low-income students. 

This grant is available to colleges and universities with $350,000 or more in Federal Pell Grants awarded to students who are enrolled in their institution. Students who receive financial aid in the form of a Pell Grant are eligible to participate in this program. Their federal student aid can also be used to help them pay for child care. 

If you’re a parent considering enrolling in a college or university, check with your school’s admissions department to see if they offer a CCAMPIS program and if you may be eligible to participate. 

State and Federal Financial Aid

Financial aid is available to students enrolled in either a traditional or online degree program. To find out how much aid you qualify for, you will need to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA must be completed each fiscal year that you request financial aid from your institution of higher learning.

Your FAFSA will help you discover your Expected Family Contribution (EFC), the amount you anticipate you’ll be able to contribute to your college education. The less you are able to contribute, the more federal aid you’ll be eligible to receive. 

One form of federal student aid that is available to single parents and low-income students is the Federal Pell Grant. Grants, unlike student loans, do not have to be repaid. The Pell Grant is typically awarded to students pursuing a bachelor’s degree who have a high degree of financial need. 

The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) is another type of grant awarded to students who have extreme financial need. Unlike the Federal Pell Grant, the FSEOG is awarded directly to students by their academic institution. Depending on your need, you can receive between $100 and $4,000 per school year if your school participates in this grant program. 

Additional Grants and Scholarships for Single Parents Attending College

In addition to state and federal financial aid, single parents may be eligible for a number of scholarships and grants. Below are some of the scholarships and grants available to single mothers and/or single fathers attending college. Please visit each of these sites for more detailed information on eligibility requirements and scholarship deadlines. 

  • Helping Hands for Single Moms – Helping Hands for Single Moms works to help single mothers in college by offering them financial assistance and scholarships, as well as auto repair, dental care, tax preparation, and more. The organization enlists the aid of the community to help craft a “Scholarship Plus” package that works with the unique needs of each single mother pursuing her degree. Eligibility requirements include a 3.0 GPA, employment history, and an interview. 
  • The Patsy Mink Foundation – Named for Patsy Takemoto Mink, an American civil liberties attorney and the first woman of color elected to Congress, the Foundation offers five $5,000 education support awards to help low-income women continue their education. 
  • Live Your Dream Award – Sponsored by Soroptimist, this scholarship program offers three levels of cash awards up to $16,000 to single mothers with minor children. Recipients can apply these funds toward the cost of tuition, supplies, and child care. 
  • Custody X Change Giving Fund Single Parent Scholarships – An essay-based scholarship, Custody X Change offers one financial award per semester to a single parent who has primary custody of a minor child. There are three entry periods, and essay topics change with every new entry period. 

Organizations That Provide Resources for Single Parents in College

Apart from scholarships, grants, and financial aid available to single parents attending college, there are a variety of organizations that provide support to single parents, helping them stay focused and earn a degree: 

 

  • The National Center for Student Parent Programs – Devoted to advocating for single parents in college, this organization runs several programs that provide assistance. One of these programs, Keys to Degrees, offers support and services, including affordable housing near campus or on-campus (wraparound support program), food security provisions, case management, and mentoring programs. 
  • Single Mom Grocery Program – Sponsored by Single Moms Planet, this program helps single mothers provide food for their families. Additionally, the Single Moms Planet organization offers support to under-resourced families with children throughout the U.S. In addition to their grocery program, Single Moms Planet also offers financial literacy and entrepreneurship training, mentorship, and family counseling. 

Balancing a full-time job, caring for a child as a single parent, and working on a degree is no easy task. In the past decade, online degree programs have made remote learning a more convenient option for students, particularly those with children. Online learning programs lessen the need for parent students to have to be away from home or arrange for child care. While it’s always helpful to have a spouse, friend, or loved one keep your child occupied while you’re attending class online or doing schoolwork, it reduces the commute and time physically away from your child.

Choosing a reputable online degree program can help you carve out a new and more rewarding career path without sacrificing the quality of education. Although National University has a traditional campus located in San Diego, we also have an established online program that allows students to earn their degree in a remote learning environment. 

Download our Financial Aid Guide to learn more about your options. If you’re considering enrolling, speak with one of our expert advisors. They can help you discover what state and federal financial aid packages may be available to you and help make enrolling as easy as possible. 

UNHCR – Refugees Magazine Issue 95 (The international year of the family)

With 80 percent of all refugees either women or children, the number of refugee households headed by females is huge.

By Robin Ellis

One night in 1986, a five-member Afghan refugee family living in Delhi, India, was turned upside down when the husband mysteriously failed to come home. He was never heard from again.

For his wife, Jahan Ara, life took a dramatic turn for the worse after her husband’s disappearance. She was unable to go out to work because she couldn’t leave her three children – whose ages ranged from two to six years old – by themselves. In addition, her husband had always been the family wage-earner and she had no outside work experience.

The children cried at night for their father, and Jahan felt alone and increasingly desperate. She had no relatives in India, and the only other Afghan refugees whom she knew in Delhi were all men. While several of them tried to help, she had to be careful about being seen with them, for the sake of her reputation. There were no Afghan women around to lend her support.

After six months, in accordance with customary practice at the time, the local UNHCR office reduced the amount of financial assistance it was providing to the family on the basis that there was now one less mouth to feed. This undoubtedly added to Jahan’s burden.

In March 1987, Kiran Bahl, a UNHCR medical social worker in Delhi, was informed that Jahan Ara had been admitted to hospital the previous night with third degree burns, possibly self-inflicted. Her condition was critical. Bahl immediately rushed to the hospital, where the young woman pleaded with her not to allow her children to be put in an institution, but instead to send them to her elderly father back home in Afghanistan. By the following morning, Jahan Ara was dead.

Today, as UNHCR and other agencies focus much more attention on the special needs of refugee women and children, a similar case would, hopefully, have a less disastrous outcome. It is now regular practice, even during major refugee emergencies, to attempt to identify vulnerable families headed by women as quickly as possible, both to protect them from possible harassment and to make sure they are receiving sufficient practical and emotional support.

The fate of Jahan Ara’s three orphaned children was in the end not quite as bad as it might have been. UNHCR’s offices inside Afghanistan were able to locate the children’s grandfather. He was living, along with other members of his family (including several women), in an area that was free of fighting. As he was more than happy to take on the responsibility of bringing up his orphaned grandchildren – and was in a position to do so – UNHCR flew them to Mazar-i-Sharif in northern Afghanistan, where, in a very emotional scene, they were formally handed into his care.

Before the tragic chain of events sparked off by the sudden disappearance of Jahan Ara’s husband, her family had been in a relatively fortunate position compared to many other refugee families (although the lack of any members of her extended family played a major role in what was to follow). A large number of refugee families lose one or several members before or during their flight. With 80 percent of all refugees either women or children, the number of refugee households headed by females is huge.

Refugee mothers, especially those with small children, face a wide range of difficulties if they are without husbands or other adult male relatives. Trying to care for small children single-handed, with little or no income, in a strange country that often has a radically different culture and language, while at the same time coping with personal grief and anxiety can make day-to-day problems seem totally overwhelming.

Ironically, life for a single woman with children can be easier in a refugee camp than it is in a city, where other refugees are less easily accessible. “Urban refugees sometimes do not even know where other people from their country are living in the same city,” said Marie Lobo, UNHCR’s senior social services officer in Geneva. “Urban refugees lack the support of friends, family and community. Single women with children, in particular, miss the help and comfort provided by other women.” Moreover, it can be extremely difficult for UNHCR and other relief agencies to identify those who are most in need in cities.

Nowadays, UNHCR is trying to assist single mothers in more constructive ways than was sometimes the case in the past. Community workers and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), experienced at working in a particular city, are often used to help identify at-risk families, such as Jahan Ara’s, that need special assistance and information to help them start rebuilding their lives.

One example of UNHCR efforts to identify those with special needs is the stand-by emergency arrangements with Radda Barnen, a Swedish NGO. During the early stages of a refugee emergency, trained community workers from Radda Barnen are sent to the scene with the specific objective of identifying at-risk populations and setting up initial arrangements designed to prevent problems that, if left unchecked early on, might easily spread out of control. One of the first things these community workers look into is the needs of mothers who have no spouse or relatives to support them. They also attempt to identify skilled people among the refugees – doctors, nurses, technicians – who can be immediately employed to good effect, and to develop community support systems to help identify and advise those in need, such as single-parent families.

While significant advances have been made in the management of emergencies over the past few years, urban refugees still pose a major challenge. In Moscow, for example, there are refugees from at least nineteen different countries scattered around the city. Many of them do not speak Russian. Among them are many single mothers, living far from their homes and totally without support.

“There is general poverty on the streets – the women, children and elderly have started to beg. Some people do not have enough money for a whole loaf of bread and have to buy half or quarter loaves,” said Yvette Stevens, chief of UNHCR’s Programme and Technical Support Section, who recently returned from Russia. “Refugees are among the worst affected, and some are forced to live in public places, such as railway stations.”

One way to alleviate the problems facing urban refugees, especially female-headed families, is to establish a community centre. Plans are being drawn up for one in Moscow. “A community centre, ideally one which is accessible to all refugees, can help people find support, information, and most importantly, meaningful friends,” said Stevens. In Moscow, for example, language classes in Russian, a library, a soup kitchen, child care, and primary health care could all be provided under one roof. Refugees would at last have somewhere to go, somewhere to meet people with whom they have something in common.

Community centres of this type have a proven track record, and have been growing more and more popular since they started being developed in the early 1980s. There are now dozens scattered in major cities around the world. Usually run by NGOs with the assistance of UNHCR, they provide a much-needed lifeline for urban refugees, and are particularly helpful to single women with children. The mutual support which invariably springs from meeting others gives people hope. More importantly, by taking it in turns to be responsible for child care, all the women are given the opportunity to undertake activities that are very difficult, if not impossible, to do while constantly looking after small children.

Refugees of both sexes can trade their skills to help each other. For example, as there are often teachers among refugees, the children can start receiving education at very little cost, in much the same way as education is set up in refugee camps. A centre makes learning possible not only for the children but also for adults, who can learn useful skills from each other, which they would be unable to do out on the street. The older women teach inexperienced younger women how to cope with pregnancy and looking after young children. They may also teach them income-generating skills such as knitting or embroidery, and help each other to find work.

One of the biggest aids to single mothers is to provide them with a source of income – either through job placement or home-based activities which enable them to earn some money. In Iran, UNHCR provided groups of Afghan women with a one-time supply of thread to weave traditional carpets – traditional carpets for the region, but beautiful and highly valued elsewhere. “The women would weave nearly every day – at home or in a group. After selling a carpet, they used part of their share of the earnings to buy necessary items – usually food, clothes, and shoes,” said Omar Bakhet, UNHCR’s former representative in Iran. “The rest of the money was spent on new cloth and threads with which to weave the next carpet and so perpetuate the source of income.”

In Hungary, refugee women from former Yugoslavia unravelled old sweaters and knitted new ones, as well as blankets and shawls to keep themselves warm, or to sell in the market.

One problem that persists is the question of financial assistance – an issue UNHCR has yet to come fully to terms with. UNHCR only provides a small financial grant for a short time to families in need. Moreover, this money is given out on a sliding scale, based on family size. In the case of Jahan Ara, the disappearance of her husband led to a cut in the amount of assistance, when if anything her needs became greater. How can financial assistance be provided in a more sensitive, more carefully targeted way? Can extra funds be raised to ensure that truly needy families do not slip through the safety net? Are donors fully aware of the importance of flexible financial assistance and income-generating projects? Such questions still need to be addressed both within UNHCR and by other agencies and the donor community. At the moment, these types of non-emergency assistance are the first to be cut back when programmes are squeezed by lack of funding.

The number of problems that face a refugee mother without a husband to help her support the family is daunting. UNHCR is striving to do more to meet the special needs of single women and their families. Understanding those needs, and instilling a fierce commitment to provide a viable home environment for such women and their children, whether that home is a tent or some small corner of a strange and bewildering city, are the first steps in providing assistance in a dignified and appropriate way. Since Jahan Ara’s death in 1987, there has been much progress. But a great deal remains to be done.

Source: Refugees Magazine Issue 95 (1994)

6 Government Social Welfare & Financial Allowance In Malaysia

By CompareHero.my September 12, 2017

Aside from BR1M, or Bantuan Rakyat 1 Malaysia to ease the burden of Malaysia’s low-income households, there are many other government aids and subsidies that you may not be aware of. Here are 6 other government aids and subsidies to help ease your burden during the turbulent economy.

Related: [LIVE] Budget 2019 Malaysia Updates & Highlights

Did you know that the government has an allocation close to RM10 billion for government aids and subsidies under the Budget 2017? Changes were also made to the government aids and subsidies to make it more efficient by creating target groups. This was also done to ensure it was benefiting those who are really in need, particularly the Bottom 40 (B40) of the population. B40 refers to the bottom 40% of households with a monthly income of RM3,900 and below. The target group eligible for the government aids and subsidies are:

  • Children
  • Elderly
  • Disabled
  • Poor Families
  • Victims of disasters

6 government aids and subsidies to help you save money in 2017

1. Financial aid for single mothers

Under the Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development, single mothers can apply to receive financial aid to temporarily ease their burden.

Child help

  • Minimum: RM100 per month, per child
  • Maximum: RM450 per month if there are more than 4 children involved

Financial help from the state

Single mothers can also get financial aid from the respective states they are residing at. However, the amount that will be given will differ according to the different states. This is because each state has their own allocation. Aside from that, eligibility requirements will also differ between states. The duration for financial help will be 1 year.

2. Financial aid for the disabled

Caregivers and those who are disabled have various aids that they may be eligible for.  The first step to take in order to be eligible to receive the aid is to register as a disabled person (OKU) by filling up this form.

Aid’s available for disabled individuals from the Department of Social Welfare Malaysia are:

  • RM350 monthly income maintenance. This is available for disabled people who are working either under an employer or self-employed with a salary below RM1,200.
  • RM200 monthly financial assistance for disabled individuals without a job.
  • Help to purchase necessities such as hearing aid, crutches, prosthetic limbs and more. The aid provided will match the actual cost of to pay for what is needed, but only if it has been approved by doctors.

The financial aid amount for employed disabled individuals compared to unemployed disabled individuals is higher. This is to encourage disabled people to remain employed and be self-sufficient.

3. Financial aid for senior citizens

To support the poor elderly so that they continue to live and lead a normal life with care, they have access to government help. Among the help that is available for the poor and elderly in Malaysia is the financial aid of RM300 on a monthly basis. 

Family members or caregivers of elderly poor citizens are eligible for respite care. This respite care is to help family members or caregivers in the event that they are not able to care for the elderly for a temporary duration. They will be provided with a place to stay, medication, physiotherapy and access to social recreation.  However, this respite care has a minimum duration of 1 day and a maximum of 30 days. No payment will be needed and application can be made at the social welfare office available in each state.

4. Government housing schemes for first-time home buyers

The government has various government initiatives to help first-time home buyers turn the dream of owning their own home into a reality, particularly the low-income groups. Among the schemes are:

  • PR1MA – Help Malaysian citizen aged 21 or above with an individual or combined income (husband and wife) of between RM2,500 – RM15,000 buy home at an affordable price starting from RM198,000.
  • MyDeposit – provide aid for the middle-income group (M40) for their first home purchase. This scheme is for individuals or households with an income of RM10,000 or below. Under this scheme, eligible Malaysians will receive a 10% contribution from the price of the property or a maximum of RM30,000 (whichever is lower) as a first time home buyer under the MyDeposit Home Scheme. But the home must be priced at RM500,000 or less in order to be eligible for this scheme.
  • MYHOME scheme – This scheme provides a subsidy of RM30,000 for first-time homeowners to buy a low or medium cost property. To be eligible you need to be a Malaysian citizen, 18 years old or above first time home buyer with a salary of between RM3,000 – RM6,000.
  • My First Home Scheme – This scheme assists young adults with income not exceeding RM5,000 a month or RM10,000 a month for joint applicants to own their first home. Applicants must be below 40 years old. A 10-­year moratorium would also apply, so buyers are not allowed to re­sell or transfer ownership of the property except to immediate family members.
  • Youth Housing Scheme – This partnership between BSN and the government is a special scheme for married youths aged between 25 – ­40 years old with a household income not exceeding RM10,000 per month. BSN bank will provide a loan of up to RM500,000 with financing tenure up to 35 years for married youths who are first-time The government will also give 50% of stamp duty exemption for the loan agreement. Successful applicants will be eligible for 100% loan amount of the purchase price with an additional 5% of purchase price to finance for insurance (MRTA). The government will also provide RM200 monthly aid for the first 2 years to ease the financial burden of buyers. To apply for the scheme download the application form here then submit it to any BSN bank branches.

See also: How To Buy Your First Home In Malaysia

5. Childcare for low-income households

This aid is to help underprivileged children in Malaysia to continue living with their families even if the family is a low-income household. The rationale is also to help maintain and strengthen the family institution so families can stay together whilst caring for their dependents properly.

Amount:

  • RM100 per person per month
  • Maximum of RM450 per month per family

6. Funding for entrepreneurs

If you’re a budding entrepreneur, or you have recently started your business, you may be eligible to get some funding help from the government. For Bumiputera, you are eligible to apply for the SUPERB scheme and have access to up to RM500,000 grant.

How to apply for the government aids and subsidies?

If the aid is provided under the Department of Social Welfare Malaysia application forms can be obtained online as per below:

For more information, you can also check out the website for Department of Social Welfare Malaysia

However, it should be noted that although the government provides aids and subsidies, we should not depend on it as it may create complacency. Here are some suggestions on how you can generate more income:

Finally, it is imperative that Malaysians increase their financial knowledge as doing so will help improve understanding of basic economic concepts. Such understanding is needed to ensure Malaysians make informed decisions with their money, and how they can better grow their wealth through smart investment decisions.

Tags: money matters, news

How to Apply for PENJANA RM300 Financial Aid for Single Mothers – MyPF.my

Among the PENJANA incentives announced by our Prime Minister is a one-off RM300 financial aid to single mothers (BKIT). Learn how to qualify and apply for this aid.

One of the Pelan Jana Ekonomi Negara (PENJANA) incentive announced by our Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin is the RM300 one-off financial aid for single mothers. This incentive aimed to provide assistance for vulnerable groups including single mothers and disabled.

How to Apply

Applicants Categories

According to the Pelan Tindakan Permerkasaan Ibu Tunggal (2015-2020) by Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development, single mothers are defined as a Malaysian women who are head of their households and fall within one of these categories:

  • Divorced with unmarried children in the same household.
  • Taking care of a husband that unable to work because of disease and with unmarried children in the same household.
  • Unmarried with child (adopted child or illegitimate child).

Eligibility

  • Malaysian citizen residing in Malaysia.
  • Woman who is the head of a household.
  • Household income under RM960 or per capita RM244 according to the Poverty Income Line (Pendapatan Garis Kemiskinan – PGK semasa)

How to Register

Source: Women Development Department Official Website

  1. Go to Permohonan Ibu Tunggal Official Portal.
  2. Select your current state.
  3. Log in to Google account to fill the application form.
  4. Attached related documents with the single mothers financial aid forms.
  5. Required related documents:
    • Copy of your identification card
    • Copy of your bank account statement
    • Copy of your child’s birth certificate, Mykid, Mykad, or proof of adoption from the National Registration Department
    • Copy of monthly payslip or written validation of income
    • Doctor’s letter of the medical record (if needed)
    • Proof of divorce ( if still in divorce proceedings)

6. Alternatively, you can download the physical copy of the form here.

How to Submit

  • You can send the online forms directly just by pressing the submit button on the Google Form.
  • For the physical form, you can be send in by hand or by mail post to the respective Women Development Department office in your state.
  • Refer here for the complete list of Department of Women Development offices in every state.
  • The deadline for the application submission is on October 31, 2020.
  • Successful applicants will be notified by SMS and the incentive will be credited in your bank account between July until November 2020.

How to Appeal if Rejected

You can appeal if rejected within the period for appeal, which is yet to be announced on the Department of Women Development’s official website.

For further information, visit the official website of Department of Women Development and follow their official Facebook page for the latest updates.

Overall

We hope single mothers will benefit from this incentive and that it will assist to support families. We would also like to encourage both private and government initiatives to provide more career and business opportunities for single mothers to help them brave the effects of the pandemic.

 

You May Also Like

 

Do share this with any single mothers who may benefit from this incentive.

Kuznetsova told how you can solve the problems of single mothers

https://ria.ru/20201129/kuznetsova-1586811453.html

Kuznetsova told how you can solve the problems of single mothers

Kuznetsova told how you can solve the problems of mothers – single

Creation of a special help service for single mothers in the “one window” mode will allow this category of citizens to solve problems with employment, admission of children RIA Novosti, 11/29/2020

2020-11-29T10: 05

2020-11- 29T10: 05

2020-11-29T11: 09

Anna Kuznetsova

Society

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MOSCOW, November 29 – RIA Novosti. The creation of a special help service for single mothers in the “one window” mode will allow this category of citizens to solve problems with employment, the admission of children to kindergarten, to deal with receiving social benefits, as well as alimony payments, said the Commissioner for Children’s Rights in the Russian Federation Anna Kuznetsova. Mother’s Day in Russia is celebrated on the last Sunday of autumn, in 2020 the holiday will be held on November 29.One Window Help One of the pressing problems of single mothers, according to the Ombudsman’s office, is still the topic of admitting children to kindergartens: over the past year, 21.4% of appeals among applicants on education related to this issue. In addition, single mothers complain about the inability to find a job, as well as difficulties with the registration of social benefits, the ombudsman told RIA Novosti. To solve this problem, in addition to the “social nannies”, which are already included in the plan for the decade of childhood, Kuznetsova proposes to create a separate assistance service in the “one window” mode.“We often receive requests from mothers who have not been able to figure out support measures on their own – how to get this or that social benefit or service, they ask to clarify the procedure or help in registration. We work with each appeal. At the same time, I think that there are many questions could decide to create an assistance service in the “one window” mode. It includes not only informing about the service, but also the full cycle of accompanying the applicant until it is received, “added the ombudsman.In addition, the commissioner named problems with the payment of alimony for the maintenance of children as a sore subject among the appeals of single mothers. According to the Ombudsman, this year the office has already received more than 300 appeals on such issues, including from the children themselves. According to data from the annual report of Kuznetsova, for the entire last year, the apparatus received more than 400 similar appeals. The previously proposed initiative to create an alimony fund will allow a parent, if necessary, to receive monthly funds for the maintenance and upbringing of a child, the Ombudsman emphasized.More Children – More Help A special place in the work of the Children’s Ombudsman’s Office is occupied by appeals from single mothers with many children. According to Kuznetsova, the bill on large families, which is being finalized, will help in solving a number of problems of this category of citizens. Moreover, the Ombudsman separately called on to pay attention to the amount of benefits for single mothers, which does not always allow to improve their material condition. “It is also important to pay attention to the amount of benefits for single mothers – today in all regions these are different amounts, which can not always really affect the improvement the financial situation of the family.The need for an early adoption of the law on large families was discussed at a meeting with the President of Russia and large families this summer. Now the bill is being finalized, “Kuznetsova concluded. At the same time, the commissioner stressed that this should not be” a law for the sake of the law, “it must reflect the principle of” more children – more help. ” , and will allow to level the status of a large family and consolidate the main list of benefits for this category throughout the country.It is clarified that at the moment there is no official statistics on the number of single mothers in the country. However, according to the 2010 census, 5,002,587 single mothers were recorded in Russia.

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Anna Kuznetsova, Society

MOSCOW, November 29 – RIA Novosti. The creation of a special assistance service for single mothers in the “one window” mode will allow this category of citizens to solve problems with employment, the admission of children to kindergarten, to deal with the receipt of social benefits, as well as alimony payments, says Anna Kuznetsova, Ombudsman for the Rights of the Child in the Russian Federation …

Mother’s Day in Russia is celebrated on the last Sunday of autumn, in 2020 the holiday will be held on November 29.

One-stop-shop assistance

One of the pressing problems of single mothers, according to the Ombudsman’s office, is still the topic of admitting children to kindergartens: over the past year, 21.4% of appeals among applicants on education related question.In addition, single mothers complain about the inability to find a job, as well as difficulties with the registration of social benefits, the ombudsman told RIA Novosti. To solve this problem, in addition to the “social nannies”, which are already included in the plan for the decade of childhood, Kuznetsova proposes to create a separate assistance service in the “one window” mode.

“We often receive requests from mothers who have not been able to figure out the support measures on their own – how to get this or that social benefit or service, they ask to clarify the procedure or help in registration.We work with every request. At the same time, I think that a lot of issues could be solved by the creation of a service of rendering assistance in the “one window” mode. It includes not only informing about the service, but also a full cycle of accompanying the applicant until it is received, “the commissioner added.

28 November 2020, 12:46

Staphylococcus aureus caused mass poisoning of children in a Minsk school. Among the appeals of single mothers, the ombudsman named problems with the payment of alimony for the maintenance of children.According to the Ombudsman, this year the office has already received more than 300 appeals on such issues, including from the children themselves. According to data from the annual report of Kuznetsova, for the entire last year, the apparatus received more than 400 similar appeals. The previously proposed initiative to create an alimony fund will allow a parent, if necessary, to receive monthly funds for the maintenance and upbringing of a child, the Ombudsman emphasized.

More children, more help

Appeals from single mothers with many children take a special place in the work of the children’s ombudsman’s office.According to Kuznetsova, the bill on large families, which is being finalized, will help in solving a number of problems of this category of citizens. Moreover, the Ombudsman separately called on to pay attention to the amount of benefits for single mothers, which does not always allow improving their material condition.

November 29, 2020, 00:37

Mother’s Day in Russia

“It is important to pay attention to the amount of benefits for single mothers – today in all regions these are different amounts, which may not always really affect the improvement of the family’s financial situation.The need for an early adoption of the law on large families was discussed at a meeting with the President of Russia and large families this summer. Now the bill is being finalized, “Kuznetsova concluded.

At the same time, the commissioner stressed that this should not be” a law for the sake of the law, “it must reflect the principle of” more children – more help. ” with trouble, and will allow to level the status of a large family and consolidate the main list of benefits for this category throughout the country.It is clarified that at the moment there is no official statistics on the number of single mothers in the country. However, according to the 2010 census, 5,002,587 single mothers were recorded in Russia.

“If it’s hard for you, send your child to an orphanage.” How single mothers survive in Ukraine | Hromadske TV

Officially, there are about 195 thousand single mothers in Ukraine who receive social benefits from the state. The average size of such payments is UAH 2,500 ($ 89). Officials believe that many mothers do not register their marriage in order to preserve this financial aid, but live with the child’s father.Since the summer of 2020, the payment rules have changed. Now they can be obtained by those who officially work or are registered with the employment service, and do not live with the child’s father, and also meet other requirements. However, such rules can leave without payments and those who really need them.

Payment not due

“For several years I met with a man, when he found out about pregnancy – he abandoned the child. I was 31 then. I was sure that I would raise him myself, I gave birth to him for myself ”, – says Vera Mityukova.

Vera was originally designed as a single mom. Together with her 11-year-old son, she lives in a hostel in Krivoy Rog. We meet her at the entrance to the building. The hostel has four floors, the windows on the first one are filled with iron sheets. “This is a shower room, but we don’t wash there – it’s cold and there is no hot water,” , explains Vera.

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Vera Mityukova in her dorm room

Photo:

Andrey Novikov / hromadske

We are going up the old stairs, around – covered with green walls in some places with holes.The corridor is dark, only from afar the light breaks through. This walk leaves a very painful impression, it seems that people cannot live here. But then the smell of fried potatoes comes from the common kitchen.

Vera’s room is small and light, it has only 18 square meters. There is no kitchen or washbasin with toilet. One sofa for two with a son, a table, a refrigerator and a wardrobe along the wall. “We are expecting that today they will bring a folding chair for our son – help from UNICEF,” , says Vera.

His name is Dima, he is in the 5th grade, in an inclusive program.Dima’s Asperger’s Syndrome is a type of autism. He goes to a music school, plays the piano, attends a chess club. Vera recently taught him how to play football, now the boy dreams of becoming an announcer or coach. But Dima remains a child with special needs: “He cannot react like ordinary children. Every situation needs to be explained to him, he cannot control his emotions, he starts beating himself, screaming, he needs to be reassured ”, – Vera explains.

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11-year-old Dima Mityukov

Photo:

Andrey Novikov / hromadske

She admits that it is difficult to raise a child alone.There are no grandparents, Vera is an orphan. At the age of 13, her mother left her at the bus stop. The girl saw her mother leave. “She said goodbye that I (Vera has neuritis on the left side of her face – inflammation of the nerves responsible for controlling the movements of the facial muscles – ed.) Will definitely be pitied and taken away by other people,” – she recalls. Of the relatives, only an aunt remained in Kharkov, with whom they do not communicate: “She once called me and her son to her place. Then she said: “If it’s hard for you, hand over the child to an orphanage.”I packed up and left ”.

You cannot leave your son alone at home – children with this syndrome need constant supervision. “I managed to find a woman who agreed to look after my child for a small fee – to meet him from school, sometimes to sit with him on weekends, because I have no work shifts these days” , – Vera says. Her salary is 5-7 thousand (about $ 178-250), but sometimes this is not enough – you have to take money on credit.

“So I received a salary – 5,600 hryvnias ($ 200), I have to give 2,800 ($ 100) to the nanny. Considering that the child is a disabled person, we have to undergo examinations and treatment all the time ”, she explains. Vera receives an allowance from the state for a child with a disability and for caring for a child with a disability, in total it is UAH 2,435 ($ 87). Until 2014, she also received social benefits in the amount of 450 UAH ($ 16) as a single mother, but then she was removed.

“They explained to me that in order to be given a“ single mom ”, it is necessary that the income for two does not exceed 1,700 ($ 60), that is, it is 3,400 ($ 121).They calculated the income and said that we were not entitled to the payment of a “single mother”. We have not received it for 6 years already ”, says Vera.

She says she knows women who are dressed up as single mothers, but live with men: “There are such women in our hostel. Through these payments, people have learned to survive. But there are also young families who do not work, receive money and drink it on drink. ”

According to Vera, it is hardest for her now because of the conditions in which they live. Dima is often sick, because it is cold in the hostel, the windows in the shared toilet are broken, and there is a draft.In the kitchen, mice run at night, and in the room you have to poison cockroaches and fleas. Among the neighbors there are alcohol and drug addicts. Out of 90 apartments, only 12 pay utility bills. “This issue is not being resolved in any way, debts are accumulating, as a result of services we are deprived of: it started with hot water, it was turned off 10 years ago, then the gas was turned off for us,” , explains Vera.

Dima shares his dreams with us – he says that he would like to live in an apartment with a bathroom, kitchen and toilet.In the hostel, she and her mother bathe in a basin or in a small bath in the room.

“I turned to our executive committee, asked to provide us with other housing – an apartment or at least a small family, or a hostel with a toilet and a bathroom in the room. I was told that I am 233 in line for subsidized housing. Taking into account the fact that in recent years we have not built houses in Krivoy Rog, it will be a very, very long time “, – says Vera.

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Natalya Skarnetskaya from Horlivka with her 12-year-old son Zhenya and her mother

Photo:

Sashko Ferens / hromadske

One breadwinner in the family

In Kiev we meet another single mother.Natalia Skarnetskaya is raising her 12-year-old son Zhenya, he has autism. Together with Natasha’s mother, they live in a rented apartment. In 2014, the family left Gorlovka (Donetsk region, the city is located in uncontrolled territory, – ed.), When the war began there. Natalya broke up with her husband when her son was 4 years old, but his father participated in the child’s life. A year after moving to Kiev, Natasha received a call from her husband’s work and was told that his heart had stopped.

“It’s difficult when you have a child with a disability, you are one breadwinner in the family, also in a foreign city” , explains Natalia.She takes us to a small two-room apartment. On the walls and refrigerators, there are colorful children’s drawings. “Instead of cabinets, we have refrigerators ,” laughs Natalia. – The owner of the apartment did not take them, so we put things there ”. In the room in the corner there is a checkered bag with things: “Not taken apart”, – says Natalya and covers it with a blanket.

The family has been renting an apartment since mid-2015, before that they lived in a center for displaced persons, but they were evicted from there.Mom is always next to Zhenya, you can’t leave a child with autism alone. Before quarantine, Natalya worked as a nanny in a family where there is also a child with a disability: “But the coronavirus has made its own adjustments. The family we worked with left Ukraine. Now I am looking for a job ”.

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12-year-old Zhenya has autism

Photo:

Sashko Ferens / hromadske

Natalya receives social benefits for the loss of a breadwinner, childcare benefits for a disabled child and payments for migrants. “We are receiving another payment. In Kiev, there is a city program for children with disabilities – this is 1,000 – 1,500 ($ 35.7 – $ 53.5), depending on the complexity of the diagnosis “, – says the woman.

The total amount of payments is about UAH 8 thousand ($ 285). Natalya pays the same amount for a rented apartment. She says that she is offered to go to work in the Czech Republic or Poland, but she cannot leave her son. “I need to leave him for three months, and my mother is no longer young, it is also hard for her.I understand that after three months I won’t put my child in a pile ”, explains Natalya.

She is in the queues for public housing, but the queue has not moved yet – there is simply no public housing.

“It is very difficult for a single mother with such a disabled child to survive where there are no relatives and no home. Any mother who has a child with a disability has never ordered such a child for herself, ”, explains Natalya. She says that while she does not see a way out of the situation, she may have to go back to the Donetsk region.But there, according to Natalia, there is nothing to do. “I always set myself up to be positive. Thinking about it is scary, I don’t know what has to happen for such mothers to have a decent standard of living, ”, she says.

Social mechanism against marriage

Lawyer of the Public Reception Office of the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Group in Kiev Victoria Petruk says that until 2016 all single mothers received payments, regardless of their salary. Its size depended on the child’s age and ranged from about UAH 309 ($ 11) to UAH 386 ($ 14).Then they began to take into account the total family income for the previous 6 months.

The officials themselves admitted that the conditions in which they put the parents, in fact, contribute to their attempts by hook or by crook to preserve social benefits. “We have created such a social mechanism when it is unprofitable for people to register a marriage,” , said the then Minister of Social Policy Alexander Reva.

Since July 2020, the payment rules have changed – now they also look at how many people of working age are in the family.

The Ministry of Social Policy, in response to a request from hromadske, says that the adoption of such changes has increased the amount of assistance for other social categories. For example, the cost of living for children from low-income families increased (from 85 to 130%), and the average amount of assistance for single mothers in families with two or more children was also raised. In other words, aid increased for other social categories due to payments that the state canceled due to new requirements.

Victoria Petruk says that single mothers often turn to them for advice.Mostly with questions about benefits – how to get them. However, Victoria does not know if she is able to help them, because mothers turn to one time and the connection with them is lost. Family law lawyer Anna Tsimeiko says that her work with single mothers also comes down to consultations – what package of documents is needed to apply for payments. “If there were controversial issues with the social service, I consulted on how to behave in such cases,” , – says Tsimeiko.

Lawyer Victoria Petruk says that they are also asked for help in cases where the mother was deprived of payment, but such requests are rarely received. “Once my mother called us, she was very indignant that her social benefits were taken away. I was trying to figure out why this happened. She said that she lives with a man. I explained that this is the basis for canceling the payment, but she said that the whole village lives with them and it is not fair that the payment was taken only from her “, – says Victoria.

According to the lawyer, now quarantine will also add problems – people lose their jobs, they cannot find a new one, and because of this they may lose social benefits.For many, especially in small towns and villages, where there were big problems with work even before quarantine, such assistance often remains the only income of the family.

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St. Petersburg | The militia sent to Torez all the bodies of the victims of the crash of Boeing

According to the assistant to the chairman of the Donetsk Regional State Administration Konstantin Batozkiy, the militia forces delivered to Torez all the bodies of those killed in the crash of the Malaysia Airlines Boeing, which they have been able to find so far.

A special train consisting of refrigerated cars was sent to transport the victims. It is located at the Torez station. Now the train contains 219 bodies and 8 fragments. Currently, the train should start moving to Kharkov ,” Batozsky wrote on your Facebook page.

He added that there is no new information on “black boxes” yet.

Currently, the Donetsk Regional State Administration is working to send the missing equipment to the scene of the tragedy.first of all, the cranes – to start parsing the wreckage. According to Batozsky, “there are no complaints from the rescuers about the pressure exerted by the DPR at the moment.”

As a reminder, the Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777, en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, crashed on July 17 in the battle-ridden Donetsk region of Ukraine. On board there were 298 people, all of them died.

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The downed Malaysian Boeing was in the zone of destruction of the Ukrainian air defense

The Russian Ministry of Defense has figured out where the Malaysian Boeing 777 could have been shot down from: as it turned out, the section of the flight route and the crash site fell into the zone of destruction of the Ukrainian anti-aircraft batteries long-range S-200 and three batteries of the Buk-M1 medium-range air defense system.

– During July 17, Russian radio equipment recorded the operation of the Kupol radar station of the Buk-M1 battery stationed in the area of ​​the settlement of Styla (30 kilometers south of Donetsk, – note “KP”), – RIA Novosti quotes a press message -services of the department (read more)

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Ukrainian controllers demanded that the pilots of the Malaysian Boeing fly below the specified altitude

The controllers of the air navigation service of Ukraine demanded that the pilots of the Malaysian Boeing-777, which crashed on the eve of the flight .

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