By Constance Ndeleko                           

It is every child’s dream to have a family or society that really cares and loves them. But it is unfortunate that some children have to undergo neglect even at a tender age.

The world is what it is but, we are the ones that are forcing some of the crazy circumstances into it. Sometime back as I was walking from job in the evening I saw a crowd of people standing at a distance but this time it was not something ordinary they were talking about. This triggered me and my instincts forced me to approach the crowd even though in my mind I knew sometimes these crowds could be a place where goons and thieves could find their way into your pockets.

Well I dismissed the thought as fast I could, risking it all into the crowd. As I came closer all I could here was Maskini! woiye! And in those words I turned back quickly to find my route home as I thought maybe someone had been shot down dead and I didn’t want to see that. Even before I took a steps further I heard he is alive, the child is alive!

Without a second thought I pushed myself into the crowd to see a child inside a box rapped in a shawl calmly and innocently sleeping not knowing what was really going around his woman emotional in blood shot eyes decided to unwrap the child to see if everything was intact, not shocking enough it was 10 degrees outside the streets of Nairobi and this little one was just only wrapped in a shawl with no clothes.

With the good help of the people around the police were called in and the child was taken into safety. The story behind it was that the child was left under the tree after the parents had a misunderstanding and none of them wanted the responsibility of taking care of the little one. Imagine how is this child supposed to grow up knowing the parents had neglected and left him unattended to die from the cold under the tree?

It is depressing, infuriating and unfortunate that some people are doing everything they can, going in for treatments trying to find ways of how they can conceive and yet some people unbelievably neglect their children on the streets ignorantly not even think of taking them to orphanages if they’re incapable of taking care of them.

Every child has a right to be attended to, good care, loved despite the circumstances that are befalling the family. They need to be looked after accordingly. Well, it is our responsibility as the society to ensure they at least they get the best of what we can afford to unsure a moral and upright bringing.

Child Neglect is the failure to take care of, give attention or attend to a child. Neglect comes in different forms and may be caused by different circumstances which therefore leads to different outcomes. It is failure to provide for the development of the child in all spheres: health, education, emotional development, nutrition, shelter, and safe living conditions, in the context of resources reasonably available to the family or caretakers and causes or has a high probability of causing harm to the child’s health or physical, mental, spiritual, moral or social development

We’ve many facilities in Kenya where we can ensure our children get at least the best we can afford and If we cannot strive to ensure they have a good child hood then we are failing on our responsibility jeopardizing the life of this child and the future as well.

Child neglect in the recent past has led children to do unimaginable things that shock as while we had the ability to take care of the situation before it was out of hand. The outcome has led to high rate of crime, adolescent violence, mental illness, depression, school dropout, early pregnancies, poor health and living conditions, physical violence and poor performance in school.

The thought of neglect from your parents is even suffocating, imagine how this child is supposed to live a normal life with all the despondency, myriads of thoughts knowing that someone neglected their responsibility of ensuring they had an upright upbringing.

We’ve facilities we can take the children who have already experienced this and ensure they get to go for counselling, therapy session or they are around people who can care and love them. As a society we should ensure that we give every child support and care to have a better and a bright future.

Let’s take the initiative of giving our children the best of what we can offer and stop neglecting them. If we don’t stop neglect now who will take care of us, who will take care of the future?

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