Children above six years are sent to a foster parent, who can be a relative or a registered parent and are given time to adjust to the house and the family.
Hyderabad: The lack of a foster care system in India despite having laws in place is saddening, say adoption care officials.
“The problem is the lack of sensitisation regarding foster care. Children above six years are sent to a foster parent, who can be a relative or a registered parent and are given time to adjust to the house and the family.
“The court grants the children a stay period of one year which is extended up to three years, after which they can be adopted. Children who are six years or older know about their orphan status. This stay helps them get acquainted with the family and also gives them a family setup while growing up. After three years, they can also be adopted by other parents.” says Dr. Gundlapally Sreenu.
Foster care system is running successfully only in Udaipur, Rajasthan.
An official says that if the foster system is implemented, children have to be brought in from time to time to talk to the adoption centre officials where they can share their concerns and worries and can be given counselling.
He added “Adopting an older child requires counselling for both the parents and the child. Since our counsellors are not capable of it, the system is a failure.”
With officials trying hard to ensure that adopted children do not fall in the hands of abusers, the process of adopting a child is strict. However, the follow up process needs to be tightened.
Shishugriha officials say that preconditions set by parents are also hindering adoption. P Sarmila says, “There are many requests, nearly 20,000. However they all want a child below five years. This mentality needs to change. Most adopted children are informed once they grow up. With the right counselling, children who are slightly older can also be adopted.”
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