NUR-SULTAN – Capital Akim (Mayor) Altai Kulginov recently raised the question of opening a new centre for individuals with disabilities after visiting the city’s social services centre. Its specialists provide services for children with psychoneurological pathologies and musculoskeletal system dysfunctions and individuals with disabilities as well as those who are physically or mentally unable to care for themselves.
His visit coincided with President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev’s call for a more attentive approach to families of children with disabilities by decreasing their financial burden and supporting activities to assist them. He signed a decree June 26 to exempt the families from paying loan debts and listened to the demand for special organisations. As a result, the capital akimat (administration) is discussing the possibility of opening a new centre.
The existing facility is staffed with qualified doctors, and it has classrooms and exercise areas.
“We are happy to visit this centre. Specialists, such as defectologists, speech therapists, occupational therapists, massage nurses and healing fitness therapy instructors, work with children here. We can feel the responsive attitude of the doctors. They even take children to the racetrack. However, there is one major issue. Not many people know about such centres where they can take their children to classes and receive professional services. We need to solve this problem so that everyone is aware of such places and has the opportunity to visit them,” said a parent.
The centre is visited by 480 elderly people and 560 children with disabilities. According to the local Department of Labour, Social Protection and Migration, as of March the capital has 25,719 residents with disabilities, including 5,316 children with special needs. Settings and equipment for those in need are limited.
“We are waiting for our turn. We would like our children to exercise using the special equipment, which is unfortunately lacking,” said a visitor.
Kulginov noted the current centre does not have enough spots and a new one is needed.
“We are discussing with the Ministry of Labour and Social Protection opening one more rehabilitation centre. We will provide land with a 150-place capacity. We are looking at submittals and are planning to commence the construction next year. We will find out which equipment is required and find ways to obtain it,” he said.