During the Eid celebrations and happiness many people didn’t consider somewhere else in the world a baby was being abandoned by his mother to suffocate and drown, freeze to death or die from hunger. This problem exist not only in morocco but many other third world countries too.
Here in Morocco most services either public or private aren’t funded and maintained properly. The issue of orphanages is one personally close to me for a few reasons one of the main reasons being that as Muslims we are told to care for the orphans, give them their rights to wealth and anything else with fairness and to ensure their upbringing etc is done so with care and due diligence.
After seeing a number of orphans and orphanages in Morocco I felt a need to make a change but first I wanted to know why there is so many orphans. I was informed that adoptions got closed to non Moroccans and people who aren’t born Muslim because of some dishonest people coming to Morocco and faking to be Muslim then teaching Christianity to the orphans and going against the legal papers they had signed in order to be able to adopt in the beginning. This caused a huge influx of orphans since most Moroccan families wont adopt due to stigma or financial reasons.
Talking about stigma, I know most are thinking but its an orphan. I was informed a lot of the baby’s had been abandoned by their mothers in the streets, bins or hospitals as they had become pregnant out of wedlock and felt shame to keep their baby or simply couldn’t afford to because their families and most times the father wont help provide. few baby’s are actually abandoned by married couples or others because of disabilities.
I have made it my mission to be able to apply for the Islamic adoption ( guardianship) of some young orphans and care for them in my home as part of my family. After further discussions with some amazing sisters we will then venture into further plans to make a more self efficient orphanage with a woman’s welfare centre to try and help women keep their baby’s and learn the skills they will need in life to care for their baby and progress in society without become a ‘dirty secret’
Most people don’t realise when an orphan walks in the streets and says something wrong or does something wrong people scoff at them and make the comment ‘ child of zina’ in Arabic to lower the position of them and insult them. This only brings them down mentally even more and causes them to turn to drugs and other things looking for comfort and a place to feel at ease. By the age of 13 a lot of orphan boys have run away from their orphanage and live on the street to do drugs and other such things to make money. One particular orphanage I went to had 33 girls and 84 boys, as people preferred to adopt girls.
As Muslims we don’t look down on anyone because of the past deeds or even the current deeds of their parents, these children are still orphans even if they are born from zina and even more in need since they don’t have any family to claim them. While their mother was pregnant she was wanting to get rid of him or her and not focusing on having a healthy baby.
Normally a pregnant woman feels the amazing gift of having her baby move in her stomach it will cause her to stop and put her hand there and pray for Allah to protect them, guide them and make them healthy and strong. These poor babies never had a loving mother who wanted them, they truly are in this world alone.
Every day and night these babies lay in bassinettes or cots, they get a bottle propped into their mouth one at a time then sat up while still in their beds and a few taps on the back to burp. They are changed and everything in their beds, if they cry a dummy is pressed into their mouths. That is their life until they can be placed onto the floor to roll and interact with each other.
Where is the mothers nurturing and care? where is any emotional development ? when a mother breastfeeds her baby there is an interaction between her and her baby from hormones and skin touching, even a baby being held and bottle fed helps their mental growth and stimulates their senses. These baby’s are being left at a great loss through this detached form of care and it is these children who will be growing up in schools and society to raise the next generation.
We have not only a duty in the sight of our religion but as an individual in the community to ensure we don’t allow oppression to pass straight over our heads.
I receive messages of support but also messages from people telling me to leave the orphans to the organisations because they are paid to do that and trained to deal with such cases, I also get told that we as a general population aren’t responsible for these cases and focus on other things like medical aid and the poor etc as the government should step up to help the cases of orphans and fund the orphanages better and change policies etc etc.
I say to everyone, it is easy to blame and remove a burden from your own shoulders but if we can see no one is doing anything, or few people are doing something to help change this situation and we have the ability to at least try until we cant do anything else then we also are accountable!
No child deserves to be unloved