Omani family adopts abandoned siblings in Muscat

Business Saturday 05/March/2016 20:41 PM
By: Times News Service
Omani family adopts abandoned siblings in Muscat

Muscat: Destiny has finally smiled on two infants, who were found abandoned in the Qurum Natural Park in Muscat about 18 months ago, as an Omani family has adopted them.
Zaiyed Al Hadidi, head of the Childhood Care Centre run by the Ministry of Social Development, said the children—who are brothers—had been handed over to a family.
“Normally, we give them to one family if they are brothers or sisters as it helps the children to adapt themselves well,” he told the Times of Oman.
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The boys were left near the entrance of the Qurum Natural Park in the first week of August 2014 during the Eid holidays, and nobody has turned up to claim them ever since.
Dressed in identical outfits, they were discovered wandering around the park. There was no note with the boys or any clues about their identities.
Despite a nationwide appeal by the Royal Oman Police (ROP) to help identify them, with the children’s images being circulated, their parents could not be discovered.
Following the discovery of the two brothers at the Qurum Natural Park, the child care centre had received numerous calls from families wishing to adopt them.
“We handed them to the family after they made an application to the Ministry of Social Development. Now we came to know that both of them are fine and have even started their studies,” Al Hadidi said.
He further said the waiting list for families ready to adopt children is longer than the children available for adoption at the child care centre. He, however, refused to divulge the number of people on the waiting list.
According to the Ministry of Social Development (MoSD), around 124 children are still living at a child care centre in Al Khoud, while 190 children had managed to find homes in 2015.
Out of the 124 children who are staying at the child care centre, 86 are males and 38 females.
The children live with their foster mother in the compound, which has all the facilities. Most of the children are Omani but there are some of other nationalities as well.
Elaborating on the adoption process, officials explained that people who want to adopt the children need to write letters to the Ministry of Social Development, which would examine details, such as their financial and family status and medical history before assessing any potential adopters.
If the application is approved, the Ministry releases the child to the foster family after the applicant signs the guardianship documents.
“But the Ministry can remove the child from the foster family at anytime if the family breaches their responsibility,” officials warned.
The foster family must be Omani and should have no other children. In exceptional cases a child can be fostered by a woman.
The service is generally processed within a week from the date of application and applications are processed within 30 days from the date of submission.
When asked about how they receive the children, officials said the children are received via the ministry in cooperation with the directorates of social development in the governorates, the ROP, and through the courts.
The children undergo a health check-up to make sure they do not have any contagious diseases. After that their birth records are officially registered, they are welcomed into the care centre.
Since education is an important aspect of any youth’s life, the orphans are sent to public and private schools. The acting parents from the orphanage continue to monitor academic progress of the children as their own.
“After reaching the legal age, the children can study further by enrolling in colleges and universities, which will be monitored by us. However, if they do not choose to go to college we will look for job opportunities in public, private and military sectors for them,” officials added.

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