Social SOCIAL & HEALTH

Two children are abandoned every day in Romania

The Ministry of Labour says two children are abandoned every day in this country. A total of 1,213 children were abandoned in the Romanian hospitals last year. Of those, 738 were left behind in maternities. Sixty-eight ended up in placement facilities, although the institutionalisation is the worst and most traumatising solution, ‘Jurnalul National’ states. The main abandonment cause is the precarious circumstances of the mothers. There are also adolescent mothers who hide their pregnancy and then abandon the infant in hospital for fear of their family, the quoted source further states.
The national child welfare system currently cares for a total of 60,000 children. Of those, 17.450 live in public placement centres. The National Child Protection Authority has found 46 cases of abuse of children in residential care facilities in 2014: physical abuse (11) and neglect (19 cases).
The Hope and Homes for Children Romania (HHC) specialists recommend more direct interventions to prevent the dismantling of families, such as the financing of social housing and economic support for families in difficulty. HHC estimates that the prevention programmes, combined with the closing down of placement facilities of the old type and setting up family-like homes for all the children in the welfare system would cost Romania approximately 200 million euro, which might be available through European programmes by 2020.

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