A new Day Activity Centre run by the Movement for the Intellectually Disabled of Singapore (MINDS) officially opens today. Located at the MINDS Tampines Training and Development Centre, it provides full-time care services for persons with disabilities with higher care needs. It will also extend its service to those who opt to attend the centre on a part time basis (e.g. a few days a week).
Minister for Social and Family Development Mr Chan Chun Sing said, “We recognise the diverse needs of persons with disabilities and the difficulties faced by their caregivers. With MSF’s support, the MINDS Centre has taken a positive step towards providing more options for adult care services for persons with disabilities. This will also help those who need some relief from their caregiving responsibilities.”
The Government currently provides subsidies (of up to 80%) for families who place their members full-time in Day Activity Centres, with higher subsidies given to the lower income. From January 2014 onwards, government funding support will be extended to part-time clients. The President of MINDS, Mr Jeffrey Tan said, “With funding available for this part-time arrangement, persons with disabilities who do not require full-time day care will be able to benefit from the care services and be continually engaged socially. Caregivers too can get some respite.”
This measure is part of a larger effort to improve adult care services and widen the range of respite care options under the Enabling Masterplan. MSF had earlier announced plans to ramp up adult care services, including boosting the number of Day Activity Centre places from the current 1,000 to close to 1,500 by 2020. In August this year, a pilot Drop-in Disability Programme at Telok Blangah and Ang Mo Kio was launched to cater to persons with disabilities who had minimal care needs and no major behavioural issues for a few hours a day, a few times a week.