The Lagos State Government has set aside N500million for the empowerment of People Living With Disabilities (PLWDs), just as it has rescued and rehabilitated over 3000 beggars, destitute, mentally challenged people and children found on the streets of Lagos. The State Commissioner for Youth and Social Development, Mr. Segun Dawodu, who disclosed this at the Y2021 Ministerial Press Briefing held at the Bagauda Kaltho Press Centre, Secretariat, Alausa, as part of activities to commemorate the second anniversary of the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu in office, added that 1408 individuals rehabilitated have been released to their families for re-integration. Giving an overview of the activities of the Ministry of Youth and Social Development in the last 12 months, Dawodu stated that the Ministry, in conjunction with the Lagos State Office of Disability Affairs (LASODA), would be meeting with each cluster of PLWDs on how to maximise the N500 million fund for the benefit of their members. He explained that there are three government-owned rehabilitation centres and one vocational centre for People Living With Disability within the State, noting these centres were established to ensure that patients are given adequate medical treatment, behavioural modification, psycho-social therapy and vocational training to make them less dependent on members of the society and become self-reliant upon their re-integration into society. The Rehabilitation and Training Centre in Majidun, according to him, presently has 1203 patients, while the Centre at Isheri was established for male drug rehabilitees. He said the Tajudeen Olusi Drug Rehabilitation Training Centre for female in Ajah has been completed and equipped by the State government for drug-dependent persons. “In a bid to reduce the rate of street children, destitute and beggars in the State, children under the age of 18 years and adults picked up from the streets were subjected to medical checkups, counselling, interviewing and training, after which the children and the adults, who had no means of livelihood and place of abode in Lagos, were transferred and handed over to their respective State Government Officials on the orders of the Family Courts”, Dawodu said. Speaking on correctional facilities in the State, he disclosed that 814 Children have undergone vocational training, reformation, behavioural modification, psycho-socio therapy, re-integration, empowerment and scholarships to higher institutions of learning (both Local and International), stressing that one of the youths in the facility gained admission through a Federal Government Scholarship to study Agronomy at a University in Russia. The Commissioner averred that the Ministry also caters for the elderly as part of its responsibilities towards improving the quality of life of Senior Citizens by establishing more shelters for them, pointing out that over 95 Senior Citizens have benefitted from the services rendered at the State’s owned Old People’s Home in Yaba. Dawodu said “The Ministry ensures that Orphanage homes, homes for the elderly, rehabilitation centres and foundations are properly monitored and registered based on satisfactory fulfilment of the requirements and operational guidelines set by the Ministry. A total of 57 provisional approval was granted in the last year for applicants”. He said the State government had empowered over 250 household heads from 55 registered groups of People Living with HIV/AIDS with different vocational start-up tools in barbing, hairdressing, shoemaking, fashion designing, catering, vulcanising among others, in addition to the presentation of cash gifts to two families with quadruplets. "These programmes, among others, underscore the high premium that the present administration under the leadership of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu places on the social well-being of residents", the Commissioner asserted. #LASG #ForAGreaterLagos