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Monday, April 15, 2024

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Social Housing: Handing Over Of House Keys To 17 Families Under The Social Register of Mauritius

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The government is determined to consolidate its social housing policy for the vulnerable group in line with its vision for an inclusive society.

This was the gist of the message of the Minister of Social Integration, Social Security, and National Solidarity, Mrs Fazila Jeewa-Daureeawoo, yesterday, at a ceremony of handing over of house keys to 17 families, eligible under the Social Register of Mauritius (SRM), in Port Louis. The event was organised by the National Empowerment Foundation (NEF) and the Ministry of Social Integration, Social Security and National Solidarity.

Minister of Social Integration, Social Security, and National Solidarity, Mrs Fazila Jeewa-Daureeawoo
Minister of Social Integration, Social Security, and National Solidarity, Mrs Fazila Jeewa-Daureeawoo

The Chairman of the NEF, Dr Mohamud Raffick Sorefan; the Chief Customer Experience Officer at Emtel Ltd, Mrs Brinda Baboolall Boodhun; and other personalities were present at the event.

Out of the 17 families, 12 are beneficiaries of the Fully Concrete Housing (FCH) scheme where the NEF constructs housing units of up to 50 m2 for families living in poverty and are owners of a plot of land but do not have the means to build a housing unit. Some Rs 1.2 million per housing unit are disbursed by the Ministry, with the NEF reimbursing 80% of the total amount while beneficiaries are required to pay back around 20% of the project cost over a maximum of 25 years. 

As for the remaining five families who were deemed to be in absolute poverty under the NEF criteria, they benefitted from an Emtel Ltd CSR undertaking who had fully funded the construction of their new house. 

In her address, the Minister of Social Integration, Social Security and National Solidarity said that a house fulfils the basic need of security and safety while giving dignity to the owners. She underlined that the provision of social housing not only promotes the welfare of the family but also safeguardes the future of the children. 

However, the Minister was adamant that the beneficiaries should put in more efforts to reimburse the required 20% of the total amount of the project cost regarding the FCH scheme, and work towards a better future for themselves and their children. 

Highlighting that education is one of the effective means to lift people out of poverty, Mrs Fazila Jeewa-Daureeawoo listed various measures taken by Government to motivate students whose families are on the SRM to complete their schooling. These comprise a child allowance of Rs 1,046 for all those in academic institutions; a grant ranging from Rs 3,500 to Rs 6,000 for school supplies; a one-off payment for successful achievement at the levels of National Certificate of Education, School Certificate, Higher School Certificate, Tertiary qualifications; Free Examination Fees Scheme for students requiring to resit examinations for the School Certificate or Higher School Certificate, free of charge; and the reimbursement of administrative and examination fees for those enrolled at the Mauritius Institute of Training and Development

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