Two bedridden mothers get gifts and help
By LAUREL V WILLIAMS Monday, December 31 2012
click on pic to zoom in
HELP AND HOPE: Mere days after her challenges were published in Newsday, Dianne Moore, aged 40, struck down by Parkinson's disease, received a wheelch...
AS two bedridden mothers lay in bed at their respective homes in south Trinidad yesterday People and Social Development Minister, Dr Glenn Ramadharsingh, brought hampers and hope to them.
The minister also visited a father and son, who have been homeless since last month due to a fire, bearing hampers and getting smiles of satisfaction from them.
At Ramai Trace, Debe, mother of six, Meera Balramsingh, 29, said she was grateful for the minister’s visit. Surrounded by her children while laying in the family’s one bedroom house, Balramsingh added he got a first-hand view of their many problems.
She sustained severe injuries when a car rolled over part of her body last August shattering her pelvic bones and fracturing her ribs. Three of her fingers were broken. Balramsingh noted she was not healing properly according to doctors. The doctors however, do not want to operate on her, fearful they may worsen her condition.
“I am happy that he came, and saw the situation that we are in. He knows that we really need assistance. This place is my brother’s place and he has his wife and child. I want to have my own place,” Balramsingh said.
Her eldest child is Akiel Thurab, 10, and her youngest is Priyanka Ram, seven months old. Her wish is to start back walking, and get rid of her body pains.
Balramsingh said her husband Dale Ram, 33, quit his job as a labourer at Penal/Debe Regional Corporation to take care of the family. The children (excluding the baby) attend Ramai Trace Hindu School, located nearby .
“If she is crying when I am holding her, someone would have to take her. Most I can do is watch, and play with her as she sleeps. On Christmas Day the place was flooded out ,” the mother added. Her father, Jagessar Balramsingh, who has polio also live in the small wooden and galvanised structure.
After distributing hampers and interacting with family members, Ramadharsingh concluded that the family was facing several challenges at the same time. Saying he and his team were there yesterday to let the family know that there is hope, he promised to provide them with proper water, and to review their food card.
“Her husband is a caregiver, but unemployed. Her father also needs support from social welfare. We can assist them through the National Social Development Programme. I am happy to provide the food support, especially at a time when people have so much, and others find it difficult to get so little. It is a touching situation, and we are happy we can assist,” said the minister.
At St John’s Road, Krooner Settlement, South Oropouche, Ramadharsingh was unable to understand what mother of seven, Diane Moore, was saying but there was a huge smile on her face. Moore, 40 , suffers from Parkinson’s disease. Her common-law husband Junior Nicholas, 40, with whom she has four children, yesterday repeatedly thanked the minister for the hampers provided together with a wheelchair and services from social workers.
Nicholas explained that Moore began showing symptoms of the disease about seven years ago during which her condition worsened. Presently, she cannot eat or bathe herself, and he and his children were taking care of her.
The Nicholas family was highlighted in Newsday recently when two of her daughters ran away from home. One was found, and is now at a home for children. The other one, Jerneil Nicholas, 15, a student at Servol Life Centre (La Romaine) is still missing.
“She used to be strong, and did things for herself. The four children used to take day off from school, to take care of her. It is harder now that the two bigger ones are not here. You have to watch and try to picture the words coming from her mouth, to try to understand what she is trying to say,” Nicholas said.
The couple lives in a wooden dilapidated structure with two of their children — Juliette Nicholas, 14, a pupil of Siparia East Secondary, and Justin Nicholas, 11, of the South Oropouche Primary School.
The elated father yesterday asked for transportation to transport his wife to the doctor and back. The minister noted that there are rural buses, and promised to arrange one for the ailing mother.
“They saw my half of a fan, and promised to organise one for her. They promised to pay someone to look after her when I go to work, and the children go to school. A neighbour takes care of my wife sometimes, and I pay her. They took her information saying they would pay her for her services,” Nicholas added.
Along Manahambre Road, Ste Madeleine, Alan Maloney and his seven-year-old son, Daniel, welcomed the minister with open hands. The father and son were living out of a tent in the ruins of their home which had been destroyed by fire on November 30. Yesterday the duo received hampers and were promised social services by Ramadharsingh.
Commenting on his ministry’s performance for 2012, Ramadharsingh noted that there is always much to do. “We have done a lot in terms of food support, water, electricity, working with the homeless etc. We are doing quite well, but we cannot do it alone. Our focus is to continue to assist the vulnerable, and the most vulnerable — the homeless. My second role is to reach out to single mothers and fathers of large families,” he added.