Transport services for disabled get boost with govt grant

Transport services for disabled get boost with govt grant

SINGAPORE - The Handicaps Welfare Association (HWA) will be expanding the services it offers to the disabled.

With the help of a government grant announced recently as part of Budget measures, the HWA will add 11 more vehicles to its current fleet of 23.

This will allow the association, which now provides an average of 40,000 trips a year or about 3,300 trips a month, to increase the number of trips by 30 per cent.

"This will help us serve more people with disabilities so they can go to school or work," said HWA transport manager Simon Ching.

The HWA also offers group transportation services to its rehabilitation centres in Whampoa Drive and Jurong Point, as well as a Dial-A-Ride programme for those who need transportation.

The HWA and the two transport companies - EK Ang Trading and Transport, and Silveray - will be able to tap a government grant of $4 million to help them increase dedicated transport services for the disabled.

EK Ang Trading and Transport director Michael Ang said he now has a fleet of 40 regular buses, which are used to ferry intellectually disabled children, such as those from Minds and the Rainbow Centre, to school and back.

With the grant, his company will be adding 10 more buses and retrofitting them with hydraulic lifts. "Some of the children use wheelchairs and our staff have to carry them up the bus now," said Mr Ang.

"With the new buses, which can each carry as many as seven wheelchairs at one go, we will be able to extend our services to more clients with physical disabilities," he added.

This article was first published on March 28, 2015.
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