31 centres across AP to care for kids if both parents hospitalised due to COVID-19

KAKINADA: The women and child welfare department has identified 31 centres in the state for looking after the children whose parents are in quarantine centres.

As the Covid-19 virus is fast spreading, many people are having to go to Covid Care Centres or hospitals, leaving behind their children. In these Covid times, few relatives or neighbours are coming forward to look after them for a period of two weeks or more. Coming to know of the children’s plight, the state government is setting up child care centres for the children of Covid-stricken patients. The centre, if necessary, will also provide any treatment.

After the parents recover and are discharged from hospitals or care centres, the children are handed over to them. Should both parents succumb to the deadly virus, the government would take a call on entrusting their care to anyone or keep them under the shelter of child care centres.

Women and child welfare department project director G.V. Satyavani said that since the Covid-19 second wave started, they took an initiative for taking care of the children and she appealed to people to make use of the facility to keep their children there if they need to move to care centres or get admitted in hospitals. They can await of the centre’s services by calling up toll-free numbers ‘181’ or ‘1098.’ Separate children homes for boys and girls were being provided, added the official.

Despite assertions by the officials, some centres are not able to admit such children. The organiser of Mission of Grace for Girls at Prakashnagar in Rajamahendravaram, Anand, said that their institute was not able to provide shelter to the children as some of their staff had became sick and there was no support facility to them.  When contacted, Satyavani said that alternative arrangements would be made in the place of the institute.

S. Siva Ramakrishna, the superintendent of Bethestha Children's Home (Boys and Girls) in Rustumbada in Narasapuram mandal in West Godavari district, and Ekalavya Children Home director Vighnesh said that their homes have all facilities to provide shelter to the children till their parents recover and come back to take them home.

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