WIO calls for more parental Care for African orphans

Monday, July 14, 2008
“The World Initiative for Orphans Foundation has released a message with urgency that  children without parental care are spreading quickly all over the world.

More and more countries and their people are aware of the silent but devastating drama that is growing rapidly under our eyes every day. In the next two generations the world faces over 400 million direct or indirect orphaned and abandoned children. In quantitative terms children without parental care, constitute  one of the major problems we are facing in this world (Alice Kakvoort 2008)” according to a press release from the World Initiative for Orphans.

According to the WIO, children without parental care do not rank high on the priority list of most governments around the world, especially those suffering from economic crisis.  These children according to them, don’t vote and they can’t organize rallies to demand their human rights and speak out against the violations of their human rights and don’t have funding or resources to hire attorneys or representation. So they are just pushed into the system (if one exists), and the general population assumes that they are being taken care of.

The WIO added that children without parental care are at greatest risk of becoming victims of violence, exploitation, trafficking, discrimination or other abuses. These vulnerable children need special protection. “For these children to develop well, be healthy, self-confident, and useful to society, they should live in the kind of family surroundings.

A family setting provides the necessary stimuli, appropriately varied and diverse, corresponding to their stage of development.  These stimuli, together with the surrounding environment, should create for children a meaningful world permeated with love which they have not experience before and free of feelings of insecurity, anxiety or danger.  They should gain the important feeling that they mean something to others around them.  

This is a positive identity, the awareness of one's own self and one’s own worth. Besides basic health care, nutrition and education, for a good development, it is also necessary to respect the child’s need to have an open future, meaning being able to look forward to or expect something. When any of these needs are not met, it is bad for the development of the child” the release stated.

The World Initiative for Orphans further observed that it has been recognized by all countries that the child, for the full and harmonious development of his or her personality, should grow up in a family environment, in an atmosphere of happiness, love and understanding (in the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child)

“If you visit some foster care homes/institutes and look “behind the scenes” beyond the food, clothing, and shelter then you can see the mental deprivation of these children.  And yet, most of them have been in the system for months and years.  Efficiency in finding the best option for permanency for these children, which is their greatest need, seems to take a backseat to a long list of other adult issues that must come first.  That makes sense if you keep in context that adults can express their rights and make demands on the government, and children cannot.

WIO therefore, believed that the best thing that we can do for these children is to make every effort to give them the necessities they need for living, including education. If we can help them get these things and help governments to develop alternative care systems, then as they grow, they may have a better chance of passing through this crisis. One thing is certain, if we do nothing, these boys and girls won’t have any change for a meaningful future. We are trying to reach out to as many orphaned and vulnerable children as we can. But there are just so many who need our help. It is an incredible challenge. The only way we can really be successful is, if people and organizations will join us in this great campaign” the foundation concluded.

Author: by Assan Sallah