As part of efforts to ensure that abandoned children in Katsina State grow up to become responsible citizens, the state government has concentrated attention on its children’s homes, where they are being accommodated and taken care of.
Northern City News investigation revealed that the Katsina Children’s Home School, located behind the General Hospital, Katsina, had 16 inmates comprising eight adults and eight infants.
The oldest inmate in the school is 11-year-old, while the youngest is five years old. The youngsters are all boys.
In the same vein, the oldest among the eight infants is one-year-old, while the youngest is 10 days old. Checks indicate that the eight infants were made up of five boys and three girls.
It was gathered that the abandoned children were picked up from different parts of the state.
Our correspondent also learnt that many of the abandoned children were born out of wedlock by young women, some of whom were mentally-ill.
Officials at the Ministry of Youths Development said the state government had been providing N500,000 monthly as feeding and running costs of the orphanages, while philanthropists had also been assisting the inmates.
The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said some former inmates of the schools had been reunited with their families, while others had been adopted.
It was learnt that a philanthropist, Lawan Mangal, was sponsoring the education of some of the children, while his father, Barau Manga, was supporting with foodstuffs.
The state government was also said to have provided the schools with solar-powered boreholes and electricity to make the environment comfortable for the children.
Although a visit to one of the schools showed that its environment was neatly kept, our correspondent observed that the children, especially the infants, needed items such as baby food, wears, disinfectants and toys.