Families, Not Orphanages

AIDS and other diseases, armed conflict, natural disasters, forced displacement and extreme poverty leave millions of children orphaned, separated, or on the brink of family breakdown. These children need and have a right to protection and care, and governments have an obligation under law to respond. The Convention on the Rights of the Child outlines these obligations; Article 20 is specifically concerned with alternative care for children, though several other articles relate to child care and protection. Regrettably, the fundamental “best interests” principle of the Convention is honoured more in principle than in practice with regard to the placement of children in potentially harmful residential care.

Published 2011-05-05