154 children lost both parents due to Covid-19, says Rina Harun
20 Sept 2021
By Ilona Andrew
KUALA LUMPUR: A total of 154 children in Malaysia have become orphans after losing both of their parents to Covid-19, said Minister of Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Rina Harun.
She added that the number they were among the 4,422 children registered under the Education Ministry who have lost either a parent, both parents or guardian to Covid-19 as of Sept 13.
"The ministry has taken an initiative to provide aid and support to these children and their family, such as cash aid."
"The government has agreed to increase the allocation of monthly aid for kids and bedridden patients under the Department of Community Development.
"For children below the age of seven, they are eligible to get RM200 per person, while kids above seven years old will receive RM150.
"For the first time ever, the maximum child assistance rate is increased from RM450 per family to RM1,000 per family," she said at the parliamentary sitting today in a reply to Segambut MP Hannah Yeoh.
Other than that, Rina said counselling services to children who are going through emotional distress due to the loss will also be provided.
Counselling will also be provided to the children's family members should they need the service, she added.
According to the Titiwangsa MP, these children will also be placed in replacement families or welfare homes.
Meanwhile, Yeoh questioned why the numbers increased drastically when the ministry had only identified 33 displaced children due to Covid-19 fatalities in August.
Rina reasoned that the children were not just identified through her ministry, but was also referred from other ministries.