The signing ceremony of the Grant Contract for “The Project for the Construction of a Vocational Training Center and Hostels for Children and Youth with Disabilities in Kanglung, Trashigang”, under Japan’s Grant Assistance for Grassroots Projects (GGP), was held on 5th March, 2015, in the city of Thimphu.
In this ceremony, the Grant Contract was signed by Ms. Jigme Wangmo, Executive Director, Draktsho, the recipient organization of this grant, and H. E. Mr. Takeshi Yagi, Ambassador of Japan to Bhutan. The ceremony was attended by around 30 people which included the people concerned of Draktsho.
In Bhutan, the opportunities of education, vocational training, and employment for persons with disabilities are still limited. This project aims to support Draktsho in shifting its current facilities and constructing a new vocational training centre and two hostels in Trashigang, eastern Bhutan. The project totals US$ 84,203.
The Grant Assistance for Grass-Roots Human Security Project scheme was established in 1989 to meet the diverse basic human needs in developing countries. The Government of Japan has supported in Bhutan such projects as construction of bridges and school buildings, as well as provision of fire engines and compactor trucks.
Although the GGP to Bhutan has been given to central and local authorities of Bhutan so far, the Government of Japan decided this time to assist a Bhutanese NGO for the first time.
The recipient “Draktsho” is a NGO founded by Ms. Jigme Wangmo in 2001, which operates vocational training centers in Thimphu city and Trashigang district for self-reliance of persons with disabilities. It has been operating a vocational training center with hostels in Kanglung, Trashigang district since 2010, and is now providing 53 people with mental, physical and/or visual disabilities ranging from ten to forty years olds from six eastern districts including Trashigang, with vocational training such as sawing, weaving, traditional paintings and paper craft as well as accommodation and food.
As the center is the only vocational training center in the targeted area and has hostels, there is great need among poor persons with disabilities and their families living in the mountainous area and there are many every year who want to be accepted in the center. But since the center rents a commercial building, the space for classrooms and hostels is limited, and it cannot accommodate more inmates. The Government of Japan decided to extend the GGP for the construction of a new vocational training center, as the project will contribute to the empowerment of economically and socially vulnerable persons with disabilities in poor eastern Bhutan.
The Government of Japan hopes that this project will contribute to improving the educational and living environment of persons with disabilities, and will further develop the relations of friendship and cooperation between Japan and Bhutan
Source : Bhutan Observer