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Take Advantage Of Economic Opportunities Available, Rosmah Tells Single Mothers | 26/03/2010
Untitled document TEMERLOH, March 26 2010 (Bernama) -- The prime minister's wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor today advised single mothers to be sensitive to change, equip themselves with knowledge and skills, and take advantage of the economic opportunities available to improve their lot.

"They should also participate in the programmes organised by the government towards ensuring the family and society's well-being," she said when opening the 6th annual general meeting of the Single Parents Association of Pahang (Mutiara) at Dewan Tun Razak, here, Friday.

Also present were state Tourism, Family Development and Women's Affairs Committee chairman Datuk Shafik Fauzan Sharif and Mutiara chairman Datuk Melati Ali.

Rosmah suggested that an in-depth study be done covering problems faced by single mothers, the causes and effects of their marital break-up, and legal aspects pertaining to such matters as common property, custody and alimony.

She said from the findings of the study, the relevant authorities could come up with suitable programmes to help the second generation cope with life without a father figure in the family and other negative effects of their parents' marital break-up.

Rosmah also said that state governments and the local authorities should consider and provide opportunities like low-cost housing, share acquisition and other incentives for single mothers.

She said the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry, meanwhile, should continue enahancing its implementation capacity to enable more expansive and effective service delivery to single mothers, including the grassroots.

"This will make them aware of the opportunities or programmes available for them to equip themselves with the skills and knowledge, and to gain employment or increase their income."

Rosmah said economy was the biggest problem faced by single mothers as some might have been housewives before and now needed a job to fend for themselves and their children, with the problem being worse if they were lowly-educated.

She commended Mutiara for being pro-active by assisting and empowering single mothers through the courses organised for them to acquire skills or learn how to do business.

She said according to statistics from the Family Development Department, there were 128,801 single mothers nationwide in 2000, with 60 per cent comprising Malays, 23 per cent Chinese, nine per cent Indians and eight per cent, other races. A large proportion of the single mothers were aged 45 to 54.

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