NEW DELHI: A fact-finding team of the National Commission for Protection Child Rights (NCPCR) will be in UP and Bihar to provide psychological counselling to girls rescued from shelter homes where they were allegedly sexually exploited and tortured.
Following his meeting with the Deoria inmates, NCPCR member RG Anand, who is leading the team, told TNIE at the girls are "traumatised but safe in a friendly environment now."
The team is scheduled to visit Muzaffarpur and Arrah in Bihar on Friday and will submit its report next week to the Women and Child Development Ministry. "Other than assessing the mental status of the girls, we are trying to reassure them and assure that their rehabilitation is proper and good."
NCPCR chairperson Stuti Kacker said going by the instances of irregularities and abuse of children at shelter homes, the Commission planned to promote foster care of children in a big way. "Of course, not all children can be under foster care, and they will be supported at shelter homes in more organised and systemic manner. But for children in the need for protection, deinstitutionalization is the answer in the long run."
Foster care is an arrangement whereby a child lives, usually on a temporary basis, with unrelated family members.
In 2015, the WCD Ministry had brought out a set of guidelines on foster care. "While placing a child in foster care, preference shall be given to those families that share similar cultural, tribal and or community connection," the guidelines said.
"Foster care can be short- or long-term depending upon the child’s needs. The situations under which short term foster care will be given and the duration will rest on the child welfare committees based on their assessment of the individual case presented before them. Long term foster care is placement of a child by the Committee for a period exceeding one year."