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August 24, 2004

Mapeke asks parents to advise children with disability

From: Republic of Botswana, Botswana - Aug 24, 2004

FRANCISTOWN - Botswana Council for the Disabled chairperson Paulus Mapeke has appealed to parents of disabled children to talk to them and give them advice the same way would their other children.

Speaking at the official opening of the extended buildings of the Francistown Centre for Deaf Children, Mapeke said such children needed care and love. He added that parents and the community should take charge and ensure that they raise them to be responsible adults.

He urged parents of hearing impaired pupils to prepare them for a time when they will have to leave their homes and take care of themselves.

Mapeke said the welfare of the children was the responsibility of the nation and that the nation should ensure that such children performed well at school. He said it was difficult for the disabled to find employment and urged those charged with their care to teach them to be assertive.

He said it would be hard for them to find employment if they could not sell their expertise to potential employers and that inability to speak for themselves would deny them access to some schemes.

Mapeke appealed to parents to visit their schools to monitor the children's development and progress as that would encourage the children to work harder.

He also advised parents to familiarise themselves with government policies so that they can pass the knowledge on to their children.

In her remarks, principal education officer Helen Molema advised parents to take part in the development of their children.

She asked them to mould their children as they grow up and help them in their learning. She lamented that children often come back from school holidays spoilt, thus burdening the school with the responsibility to re-mould them. BOPA

© 2004 Botswana Press Agency (BOPA)