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Committee Hears Of Abuse Of Teenage Mothers

  Home director Lynne Roche said they would make sure that a safety network was provided when the teenage girls returned to their communities. Pregnant teenagers under the care of
06 Dec 2016 11:00
Committee Hears Of Abuse Of Teenage Mothers

 

Home director Lynne Roche said they would make sure that a safety network was provided when the teenage girls returned to their communities.

Pregnant teenagers under the care of Homes of Hope are usually victims of sexual abuse and incest.

This was revealed yesterday by the Home’s Director, Lynne Roche while mak­ing submissions on the Adoption Bill 2016 before the Standing Committee on Justice, Law and Human Rights in Parliament.

“The youngest mother who has been through the service is a 12 year old girl,” she said.

Ms Roche said for the last 20 years they had supported around 500 mothers both through indirect care and their commu­nity programme was directly involved with the protection of the exploitation of young children.

She said the Home conducted train­ing programmes like a basic skills pro­gramme for young mothers while their children were at the nursery.

Ms Roche said young mothers who dropped out of primary school would go through remedial classes to improve their numeracy and literacy skills.

She said that the primary contributor to teenage pregnancy was incest or sexual abuse as most were young girls from dys­functional families and most of their tar­geted areas were informal settlements.

Ms Roche said informal settlements had the high risks of social issues like drug abuses, family issues and school drop outs.

She said part of their work was to ad­dress these issues through counselling, if the girls were over eighteen they made sure they support either through mainte­nance or a Domestic Violence Restraining Order was in place for their safety.

She said there are currently 13 young mothers and over 50 children from all dis­tricts around the country under their care at the home

Standing Committee on Justice, Law and Human Rights Chairman, Ashneel Sudha­kar praised the Home for their work.

He said they had done a tremendous work for Fiji by providing services to young teenage girls who had lost hope in life also children who had been left out in the society due to family issues, sexual abuse and incest.

Edited by Rusiate Mataika

Feedback: arieta.vakasukawaqa@fijisun.com.fj

 

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