The Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports (MCYS) would like to refer to the letter in the Opinion page of the Bulletin on October 1, regarding ‘Concerns over increasing number of beggars’.
The MCYS deeply appreciates such concerns from the public as they are in line with policies of the Government of His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam, which always looks after the welfare of the people, particularly those living in hardship.
As such, the government has established the National Welfare System (SKN) that can be accessed through the website, www.skn.gov.bn, as an initiative to make it easier to apply for welfare, either at the Community Development Department (JAPEM) or Brunei Islamic Religious Council (MUIB).
Since its launch on July 15 2020, until October 1 2022, a total of 37,327 applications had been received through the SKN, which aims to improve the quality of life among those in need and living in hardship.
Aside from financial aid, the government, through JAPEM and MUIB as well as other agencies, also provides those in need with other types of assistance, such as food and shelter.
Information on the SKN and similar assistance initiatives will continue to be shared with the public, through JAPEM’s Program Merakit Masyarkat across the Sultanate, to convey to the public on the types of assistance available and how to apply. In addition, to ensure life continuity for welfare recipients, there are also empowerment programmes, such as job placement and training, to break the cycle of poverty. Meanwhile, their children and dependants will also be provided with financial or schooling aid.
Members of the public who come across individuals in need or living in hardship are urged to advise them to register with the SKN, inform the penghulu or village head, or contact the welfare helpline 141.
Together, we can care for and give attention to people in need by sharing information as part of our whole-of-nation approach to tackling poverty.
Ministry of Culture,
Youth and Sports