KAMPALA – Speaker Rebecca Kadaga has called for an end to the practice of chasing away children from orphanages and other protective homes the moment these children turn 18 years.
The Speaker made the call on Monday August 5, while meeting with representatives of New Hope Uganda, the Kasana Community Children Centre as they paid a courtesy visit to the Office of the Speaker at Parliament.
Speaking on behalf of the team, Jonnes Twebaze Bakimi told Hon Kadaga that most of the children who find their way to orphanages and children’s homes go there because of the circumstances in most cases when their parents have died or abandoned them so it becomes a challenge for such children to start up a new life at 18 years without an organised home where they can be received.
“If you are getting an 18-year-old out of a home, you are rendering him a destitute, no wonder, the crime is increasing among the youths especially among these children who have been attached to these homes because if they are required to be sent out, what will they do and I think that is absurd.” Twebaze said.
He said although orphanages have been normalised in Uganda, there is a need to change this perception and embrace adoptions to allow children grow up in a family setting instead of having them grow up in orphanages.
“I believe that is because of an imported policy our approach is different, I don’t believe in orphanages because the word orphanage is a children’s warehouse, children should be put in a community where a family is surrounding them, so a family concept is what I believe should be and able to stay as long as they have the ability to launch and be launched out,” said Twebaze.
Kadaga promised to cross-check with the Ministry of Gender Labour and Social Development over this issue and raise the matter on the floor of Parliament.