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SIBU, Sept 7: Almost all homeless individuals registered with the Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Ministry have completed the second dose of the Covid-19 vaccination, except those in Bintulu and Kuching.
Its minister Dato Sri Fatimah Abdullah told reporters at the vaccination programme for homeless individuals here last night that they had covered Serian, Betong, Samarahan, Miri, Kapit, Sarikei and Sibu.
“As of Sept 5, the number of homeless individuals who have received the first dose of the vaccine was 107 while 42 of them have completed their second dose. We have not started the vaccination drive in Bintulu but we expect it will be done on Sept 9,”she said.
According to the ministry’s statistics, all 31 homeless individuals in Kuching had received their first dose of the vaccines, while all eight in Bintulu have not received vaccinations yet.
Districts that had completed the vaccination programme include Miri with 23 homeless individuals, Sibu (28), Samarahan (1), Serian (3), Betong (1), Kapit (7), and Kapit (7).
Touching on the vaccination in Sibu, she said six homeless individuals were vaccinated on Sunday followed by the rest last night.
“For Sibu, we would approach them at night at their resting place and vaccinate them there. We also bring some of them to the vaccination centre to be jabbed. There are some of them who move from one place to another, so it is difficult for us to locate them. These are the challenges that we are facing,” she said.
Touching on the soon-to-be-completed temporary transit centre (TTC) at Maksak House here, she said the project is now 84 per cent completed and is expected to be ready for use by October.
“With this TTC, it will be a resting place for homeless individuals where they can visit during the night to bath and sleep. They will be provided with food during the night also,” she said.
Dato Sri Fatimah said homeless individuals will be given life skills training so that they could be independent.
“We are also thinking of training them with urban farming and fertigation skills so that they could earn from their produce. So it means that while we are helping them, they will also have a place to sleep during the night,” she said.
At the TTC, the minister said counselling would also be provided for them by the Health Ministry while the centre itself will be run by a non-governmental organisation. — DayakDaily