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Opinion

EDITORIAL - A second look at child welfare advocacies

The Freeman

There is no shortage of advocacies concerning minors and children involved in all types of situations that are detrimental to their growth and development into healthy, educated and productive citizens. Such situations may involve physically violent crimes or crimes against property, illegal drugs, sex abuse and pornography, child trafficking, and child labor.

But as many as these advocacies are, and as focused are some of them on very specific areas of concern, the plight of many children in the country remains a problem that appears to be getting worse instead of getting any better. And it could not have been for lack of trying. It could not have been for lack of support and funding.

Obviously, if the problem is getting worse instead of getting any better, then something must be terribly wrong somewhere. And if it should concern anyone that something must be terribly wrong somewhere, then perhaps all the advocates dedicated to minors and children, along with government functionaries who either lead their own initiatives or stand behind these advocates, need to come to a pause and assess everything.

A review is clearly in order as to how the ground has been covered and which direction to head next. Maybe the approach to the problem may even be assessed in order to determine if everything that has been done was in fact appropriate. Problems involving the welfare of minors and children require a continuing attention and focus. It is something that never lapses into irrelevance.

It is therefore never too late to start all over again or to reorient all initiatives that have been undertaken so far. One thing that might merit a second look is where the appropriate time for intervention should be. As of the present, almost all interventions happen at a point where a minor or a child has already been involved in something that could possibly change his life forever.

If that is the case, then any intervention might very well become only temporary, if in fact it is not too late already. One thing many may have overlooked is a statement or declaration all of us have been made to familiarize ourselves with, and it goes: The family is the basic unit of society. This short, simple and easy to understand sentence may very well hold the key to cracking the case for minors and children wide open.

Maybe this is where the intervention should start and focus on. It should not be hard for anyone to identify which families are at grave risk of breaking apart and cause the children in them to scatter every which way to fend for themselves without the guiding influence of strong and stable family ties. Before such a break-up happens is where the intervention should begin, not after the damage shall have become irreparable, and the lost lives irrecoverable.

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