Promoting well-being of Children with Disabilities remains a key priority
“As we continue to commemorate Disability Rights Awareness Month, let’s join hands as a society, to support and promote the social and emotional well-being of children and youth with disabilities.
Our efforts to collaborate, serves us well in helping to create new, and expand existing networks that bring children with and without disabilities together, in a way that gives each child an opportunity to be their authentic self," said Western Cape Minister of Social Development, Sharna Fernandez.
Minister Fernandez added, “We will continue working with our NPOs, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), the private sector and all stakeholders in developing and implementing targeted programmes that respond to the needs of children with disabilities.”
To promote the social and well-being of children with disabilities, DSD with the support of its NPO partners renders the following services:
ECD & Partial Care programmes
Early Childhood Development is regarded as a crucial prevention and early intervention programme that is critical for the social and emotional development of children.
The Department also provides funding to ECDs rendering specialized services to children with disabilities that focus on capacity training to practitioners, parents and children using an unbiased approach in the management of children with disabilities.
Child Care & Protection Programme: Child care & protection services (statutory services).
DSD’s Child Care and Protection Programme aims to safeguard and promote a child’s well-being and build the resilience of families and communities to care for and protect their children (includes children with disabilities, affected families and communities).
The following services are offered;
- Public Education and prevention programmes, targeting children; parents; families and communities, with more focus on parental responsibilities and rights.
- A range of programmes and services for children with risky behaviours e.g. safety and risk assessment services; therapeutic and psycho-social services, temporary safe care programmes; adolescent development; programmes for children with behavioural, psychological and emotional challenges, transitional care and support programmes for children about to exit alternative care; programmes for children that live and beg on the streets.
- Statutory services - e.g. foster care programme, adoption programme.
- Programmes aimed at reunifying children, that have been placed in alternative placements, with their families or communities of origin.
The Department with the support of its NPO partners also offer training to Safety parents from the Department’s database, who accommodate children with disabilities.
Child and Youth Care Centres (CYCCs):
Children (with or without disabilities) under the age of 18 years old, who are living and working on the streets, are urged to seek accommodation at child and youth care centres that provide specialised programmes and are registered with DSD
The Department offers specific Child and Youth Care Centres (CYCC)s for children and youth with disabilities with varying programs:
- Sivuyile CYCC facility specialises in severe to profound disability programs
- Susan Lapoorta - specialise in highly functional autism spectrum programs
- Nazareth House – mild and moderate disability programs
- Agape Child and Youth Care Centre - profound and severe disability programs
- Sean Kelly CYCC– severe to profound disability programs
Disability Programme: Daycare and residential care services.
DSD also funds NPOs that render the following services for persons with disabilities.
- Residential care services for children with severe and profound intellectual disability. The Department currently provides funding for five facilities in the province, accommodating ninety-two children with disabilities.
- Day Care services provide day-time supervised care, stimulation, structured programmes and activities for children with severe and profound intellectual disability. The Department currently funds fifty-one NPOs which renders such services.
“If we are to truly live in a society where we are ‘BetterTogether’, it is of crucial importance that the provision of integrated programmes and services to children with disabilities”, concluded Minister Fernandez.
For more information contact:
Any persons interested in finding out more information about the services we offer children with disabilities can make contact with our department by calling, 0800 220 220, to be directed to your nearest local DSD office.