Kapitan hopes for aid for homeless family found sleeping in park

Pong (left) with Ghani and his family at the park.

MIRI: The plight of a homeless family of five, who were spotted yesterday sleeping at Miri Public Park, has been brought to the attention of the state Welfare Department, said a local community leader.

A photo taken by a concerned member of the public who noticed the family sleeping at Miri Public Park.

Kapitan Betty Pong told The Borneo Post that she came to know of the family’s predicament through a member of the public, adding they had been sleeping at the recreational park for the past four days.

“I was told by the husband, Ghani, and his wife Zurina that they hail from Kampung Beraya Lama in Bekenu.

“Due to family issues and financial distress which the couple did not want to elaborate further to me, they had to leave their family home in Bakam and have since been living on the streets here,” she said.

When interviewed, Ghani said he used to work as a grasscutter and was the family’s sole breadwinner, but lost his job during the implementation of the Movement Control Order.

“My wife is a full-time housewife who takes care of our children. We have five children but the elder two, aged 11 and 12, are now under the care of a relative while the younger three are with us.

“Our situation has been very difficult with no money and nowhere to go. When we came here (Miri Public Park), the security guard discouraged us from staying but we had nowhere else to go, so we pleaded with him to let us stay while we looked for other options,” he said.

Ghani also said he was grateful to the eatery operators at the park for providing the family with food and also allowing them to take shelter at their premises at night if it rained.

When asked, he said he had previously applied for and received welfare assistance, but the aid was discontinued and the last time he received any was in 2018.

Meanwhile, Pong expressed hope that the Welfare Department would extend the necessary help to the family.

“I hope that proper arrangement can be done for them especially because there are young children involved,” said Pong, who later provided the family with some money, clothes and dry food.

The post Kapitan hopes for aid for homeless family found sleeping in park appeared first on Borneo Post Online.

Source: https://www.theborneopost.com/2020/11/11/kapitan-hopes-for-aid-for-homeless-family-found-sleeping-in-park/