Model support for children with disabilities at Anglican centre in Malaysia

19 June 2013

Michelle Lim and her three year old daughter Jim Tung, pictured, were among the  parent and child teams at the St Paul’s Day Training Centre which showed how early intervention could help children acquire skills to equip them for schools.

The visits came on the second day of the Anglican Alliance east and south east Asia forum meeting in Kuala Lumpur, when participants went to see some of the development services provided by the host diocese of Western Malaysia.

Children aged between two and six years attended St Paul’s with their parents or carers to take part in early intervention educational activities and therapies which are then continued at home for the rest of the week.  Centre staff train the parents to support their children whilst also ensuring that they learn to become as independent of them as possible.  The centre’s success stories include a former student who became a centre manager and another who became an administrative assistant.

In the afternoon the participants visited a number of centres for people affected by HIV and Aids: this is one of the focal points for the forum meeting.

At the Welcome Home they saw how the Church was supporting men who failed to maintain the drug therapies needed to control their condition – due mostly to substance abuse.  And they also visited a home for single HIV positive mothers and their children who are also mostly affected by the virus.

The forum meeting will tomorrow be drawing up proposals for regional working to strengthen development, relief and advocacy by Anglican churches and agencies across east and south east Asia. Participating in the forum are delegates from Hong Kong, Korea, South East Asia, the Philippines and Sri Lanka, from Amity Foundation in China, the executive director of the Anglican Board of Mission in Australia, Rev John Deane, who is also the chair of the Anglican Alliance’s advisory board, and the Alliance director and regional facilitator. The meeting is being held at the Council of Churches of Malaysia Ecumenical Centre in Kuala Lumpur and is being hosted by the Diocese of West Malaysia.