Care and support in Singapore is changing the lives of disabled people

Publié: 13 mai 2013 10:08 CET

By Paul Chng and Ms Siti Mariam Binte Saiful Haireen, Singapore Red Cross   

Ms Siti Alloyah, 41, suffers from physical and intellectual disabilities and occasional fits of epilepsy. As a wheelchair user, she is completely reliant on her elderly mother to care for her basic needs such as feeding. Yet reserved in her character, Siti does not like being around people.

Simple gestures like touching her hand triggers anger, and she outwardly displays her displeasure by ‘tutting’ loudly. Siti is also unresponsive most of the time; gazing around with a blank expression and showing no interest in visual or audio stimulation.

All of this changed, however, when Siti began attending the Day Activity Centre, run by the Singapore Red Cross. Opened in June 2011, it is situated at the Red Cross Home for the Disabled at Family Link, Lengkok Bahru.

The Red Cross Day Activity Centre provides social, physiotherapy and occupational therapy activities to develop the cognitive, social and motor skills of clients. It is a valuable option for families who cannot hire full-time nurses or caregivers, allowing them to take up full-time work and gain an additional source of income, while maintaining peace of mind about their family members.

After a few weeks with the Day Activity Centre, Siti’s sister, Mrs. Siti Mariam, and her family noticed a marked improvement in her sister’s personality. “In the past, she used to be reticent when we took her out such as to the market. Since enrolling into the Red Cross Day Activity Centre, she is now cheerful, smiley, bright-eyed individual who welcomes interaction and has a heightened sense of awareness,” she says.