A total of 1,694 vulnerable families have each received $600 under Government’s Adopt A Family Programme.
This disclosure has come from Permanent Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office, Alies Jordan, who said $1,016,400 had been disbursed to date.
She added that the money was the first of three monthly payments they would receive to provide much-needed food for their families.
Ms. Jordan told the Barbados Government Information Service: “These payments exceeded the original target of 1,500 vulnerable families, at a cost of $900,000 per month. In addition to disbursing the funds, which were received through donations, Government also provided financial support for the programme, to meet the additional need.
“Based on the referrals, calls and emails that have been received, it is now estimated that a minimum of 2,500 vulnerable families are likely to apply for assistance. This would take the disbursed amounts for May and June to $1.5 million per month.”
The Permanent Secretary disclosed that as of May 4, 2020, 326 individuals and companies had donated $900,000.82 to the Adopt-a-Family Programme.
She stressed that none of the donations was used to pay bank charges or administrative costs, but rather, to provide assistance to the most vulnerable families.
Explaining the details, which led to households being chosen, she said families were first assessed, and confirmation sought to ensure they were not already receiving other benefits.
Ms. Jordan said, with the assistance of CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank, debit cards were provided to the recipients.
She added that because of the curfew, arrangements were made for persons to collect the cards from a location, for example, the Welfare Office in their immediate vicinity.
She pointed out that a team-approach was employed by various ministries to ensure the funds reached the families in a timely manner.
The Permanent Secretary listed those as the Ministry of Finance, Prime Minister’s Office, the Ministry of People Empowerment and Elder Affairs, the COVID-19 Unit, the Household Mitigation Unit, and the Ministry of Innovation, Science and Technology.
Ms. Jordan thanked all of the individuals and companies for acting as their brother’s keeper in this time of need and made donations to the bank account.
She added that it will remain open, and encouraged persons to continue making deposits to account number 1001193982, at CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank, Broad Street.