LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has said that special children are as talented and gifted as the normal children and provision of proper education and training facilities can help make them useful citizens of the society.
He said that Punjab government has taken a number of solid measures for the rehabilitation and look after of special children and education and training facilities have been improved in the institutions for special children. He said that a centre of excellence for the rehabilitation of special children is being set up in the provincial metropolis where a 100-bed hospital and a research centre would also be established. He said that an effective system of treatment and look after is essential for children with Down syndrome.
He expressed these views while addressing a function arranged for Down syndrome special children here on Monday.
Provincial Minister for Special Education Asif Saeed Manais, Member Provincial Assembly Ch Lal Hussain, Secretary Special Education Ambreen Raza, Chairman Al-Jalal Welfare Trust Jalal Akbar Dar, teachers of down syndrome children, their parents and a large number of children were present on the occasion.
The Chief Minister was presented a national flag and peace flag at the conclusion of the ceremony. The special children also gave an excellent performance through expression of their face and speech during the function. Speaking on the occasion, the Chief Minister expressed his pleasure that such talented and beloved children of the nation are present in the hall where cabinet meetings and other government functions are held.
He said that special children are messengers and ambassadors of peace and there is a need to pay due attention to their care, rehabilitation, education and training. He said that Punjab government has adopted an effective strategy for this purpose and education and training facilities have been improved in the centres for special children. Shahbaz Sharif said that a number of buses have been provided to educational institutions of special children for providing transport facility while talented special children have also been given laptops.
He said that government has not only constructed new institutions for training and education of special children but 37 computer labs have also been set up while 99 special education centres have been upgraded from primary to middle level. He said that 36 centres for slow learners have been established in various districts while a training college has been set up in Lahore for the training of teachers of deaf and dumb children. He said that though Punjab government has taken a number of measures for the rehabilitation of special children but much is still to be done.
He said that it is time to resolve that every effort would be made for saving the children from Down syndrome and rehabilitation of such children. He commended the efforts of Al-Jalal Welfare Trust for the rehabilitation of Down syndrome special children. The Chief Minister set up a committee headed by Provincial Minister for Special Education and directed the committee to visit the institutions set up by Al-Jalal Welfare Trust for the rehabilitation of down syndrome special children as well as other institutions for special children in different districts. He said that government would extend all out assistance to these institutions working for rehabilitation of special children in the light of recommendations of the committee.
Provincial Minister for Special Education Asif Saeed Manais while addressing the function said that Down syndrome special children have come out with the message of peace and they are welcome in Lahore.
He said that Punjab government is implementing an effective programme for the rehabilitation of special children and making them useful citizens of the society. He said that there are 237 centres for special children in the province where Down syndrome special children are also studying at these institutions. He said that the state of the art centre to be set up for the rehabilitation of special children in Lahore would be a gift for such children. He said that besides provision of free books, uniform, transport, equipment and other facilities in the centres for rehabilitation of special children, Punjab government is also giving them a monthly stipend of Rs 800.
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