Mumbai, 20 July-2014(PTI): The Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education (MSBSHSE) and…
MUMBAI,NAZIYA ALVI RAHMAN:After a recent departmental survey highlighted the failure of most NGOs on maintaining basic standards in children’s homes, the women and child development department is working on a new policy to regulate government grants given to such homes.
As per the new draft policy, the grants will not be given on a per-child basis but on the facilities and other basic infrastructure requirements. As of today, the department pays Rs900 per month per child to each children’s home.
Also, the new policy will rationalise the children’s homes across the state. Sources claim that as of today, there is a heavy concentration of children’s homes in Aurangabad district whereas there are several districts where there is no home at all. The old policy of 2011 is silent on exactly what quantity of population should have access to at least one children’s home.
“We are considering several options, like having a home in each district or taluka. However, as of now, the policy is in its initial stages and will take some time to be finalised. We have sought feedback from various social organisations working for child rights and are also studying policies for children’s homes in foreign countries ,” said a senior officer.
Sources in the department said that there were too many loopholes in the existing policy, which makes it easier for NGOs to get away with poor standards. In August last year, women and child development minister Pankaja Munde had initiated a survey into the living conditions of all the 963 children’s homes affiliated with the government and the outcome has left the department disappointed.
As per the survey, homes were classified under three categories — A, B and C — depending on their condition. Only 476 children homes fell in the “A” category and would continue to run with complete government support.