Activists and volunteers have stressed the need for measures for the welfare of orphans, said a press release.
Natural disasters, wars, and political conflicts have claimed thousands of lives in the last decade, due to which scores of children became orphans. This was stated by Pakistan Orphan Care Forum (POCF) Chairman and Al-Khidmat Foundation President Abdus Shakoor in Islamabad on Friday.
POCF organised the session titled “An evening with orphaned children” to mark World Orphans Day. Several NGOs observed Ramazan 15 as “World Orphans Day” on the call of Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).
“The purpose of observing ‘World Orphans Day’ is to highlight the problems of orphan children and to realise our social responsibilities towards them,” he said. According to a Unicef report, Pakistan is home to 4.2 million orphaned children, a large number of whom are deprived of basic health, food, and education facilities.
“Due to excessive financial pressures, upbringing of orphaned children has become very challenging for their families. Consequently, these children become deprived of proper education and moral upbringing, and fall prey to wayward attitudes,” Shakoor said.
Muslim Aid Country Director Khobaib Vahedy said there were more than 100 million orphans worldwide and estimated 65 million in Asia. He said sense of deprivation, psychological problems, personality development issues, lack of educational opportunities, and malnutrition were some of the major issues orphan children face in Pakistan.
The speakers and volunteers resolved to create a society in which all children are granted their basic rights without discrimination on the basis of religion, race, and creed.
Defence Parliamentary Secretary Chaudhry Jaffar Iqbal and representatives of several NGOs also attended the session.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 5th, 2015.