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‘Pilot programme to gauge impact of foster care system’

By Khetam Malkawi - Feb 26,2014 - Last updated at Feb 26,2014

AMMAN — The Ministry of Social Development is currently implementing a pilot foster care programme, a ministry official said on Wednesday.

The pilot programme seeks to gauge the impact of the inclusion of children within families, according to Fawaz Ratrout, the ministry’s spokesperson.

“Every child deserves to live in a family environment, but we have to examine the results of the study we are conducting before developing laws in this regard,” Ratrout told The Jordan Times.

He explained that the foster care study involves children whose identity is known, but are either infants or have been abandoned by their families.

In addition, he noted that the foster family should have children of its own, unlike in adoption cases where eligible families should not have children.

The system implemented in Jordan at present is the adoption of children of unknown identity, according to Ratrout, who said 1,069 children were adopted in Jordan between 1967 and 2013.

Currently, the number of families on the waiting list is 134, “but there are only 11 [eligible] children at our care centres”, he added, noting that a child should stay for at least three months at a care centre before adoption.

“Sometimes, we manage to find the biological family of a child, and this is the reason for keeping them at the care centres for a while.”

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