NEWS

Increased Funding For Enhanced Child Services In Fiji

  The Ministry of Children has received an increased budgetary allocation in the 2016-2017 budget to enable enhanced child protection services in Fiji.   This was highlighted by the Minister
04 Jul 2016 18:06
Increased Funding For Enhanced Child Services In Fiji
Seated on left- Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Hon. Rosy Akbar

 

The Ministry of Children has received an increased budgetary allocation in the 2016-2017 budget to enable enhanced child protection services in Fiji.

 

This was highlighted by the Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Hon. Rosy Akbar during the budget debate in parliament this morning.

 

Minister Akbar said that the welfare of children is at top of the national agenda, with an increased budgetary allocation of $4.5 million.

 

“The $1 million is for increased advocacy, community awareness on child protection programs that my Ministry coordinates in partnership with UNICEF and Non-Government Organisations.  The Ministry in partnership with the Medical Services of Pacific also operates the 24/7 National Child Helpline that continues to provide responsive platform for our children,  parents to seek free counselling and advice,” Minister Akbar said.

 

“The Care and Protection Allowance Programme, which assists children from low-income families and single-parent families, prisoner dependents, children living with disabilities and children under our residential care, will also be funded at a substantial level. We have been given an increased allocation of $300,000, the total allocation stands at $3.5 million and this will allow us to cater for 250 new recipients in the new financial year.”

 

Currently, a total of 3,398 children, including those from the residential homes such as Dilkusha Girls Home, Homes of Hope, Lomani Au Children’s Home and St. Meena’s Home continue to benefit from the Care and Protection Allowances.

 

The Ministry also received specific budgets for the administration of Juvenile Rehabilitation & Development Centre and Pearly Gates Hope in Suva.

 

“The Juvenile Rehabilitation Centre is the only state owned facility to provide an enabling and caring environment for the rehabilitative care of juvenile offenders in the country. Since its establishment in 1932, the Centre has grown where offenders continue with education and those who are technically inclined attend vocational training. There is an annual allocation of $952,883.00 to cover the management, operation and capital works for the facility,” Minister Akbar said.

 

There are success stories to show that juvenile offenders have attained higher education and been able to secure employment and business opportunities when leaving the Centre.

 

“The Ministry also manages the only Girls Home “Pearly Gates Home” that caters for young girls who are victims of abuse. The rehabilitation in this facility provides a safe and secure environment for them to be educated and also seek psychosocial support. An annual allocation of $150,000 has allowed the Ministry to outsource the holistic care and management of the centre,” Minister Akbar said.

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