HomeNewsDisabled children’s centre shuts down

Disabled children’s centre shuts down


MONICA Brewer Day Centre in Bulawayo — a centre catering for children with cerebral palsy — has closed due to financial challenges, an official has confirmed.


At least 60 children with severe disability of cerebral palsy and autism were accessing their routine physiotherapy check-ups.

In an interview, Irene Mhunga, Bulawayo branch chairperson and the national vice-president of Monica Brewer Day Centre described the situation as very bad.

“We have temporally closed for a month because of the financial challenges that the centre is currently facing,” she said. “The situation is very bad.”

Mhunga said the challenges include transport costs at
$778 a month to ferry children to and from their homes, food at $800 a month and rent which costs $500.

“Parents are at pains to pay the $100 that is needed per term, so we no longer have money to run the institution. We are going to sit down with parents tomorrow (today) so that we map the way forward.”

The branch chairperson said the centre, is for relief purposes whereby “we are trying to relieve the parents from the
24-hour care.”

Cerebral palsy is a term which encompasses a set of nervous system conditions that cause physical disability in human development affecting the brain and nervous system.

It is a result of injury to the brain before or shortly after birth.
Autism is a mental condition, present in childhood characterised by great difficulty in communicating and forming relationships, and in using language and forming abstract concepts.

It is also a mental condition in which fantasy dominates over reality as a symptom of schizophrenia and other disorders.

The centre was established by mothers with children with severe disabilities after realising that they could not do anything profitable for a living if they concentrated on their children who need close attention every time.

At the centre parents take turns to look after their children with almost the same conditions.

Sithembile Ncube of Queen’s Park East in Bulawayo, said the development was going to affect them as they were able to carry on with their day-to-day duties and work for the family while their children were at school.

She added that her child was immensely benefiting from the centre as she was being taught things she could not learn at home.

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