As part of my role as Chair of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association Modern Slavery Project I brought together members of Commonwealth parliaments and key stakeholders in the battle against modern slavery. In particular the deeply concerning use of bogus orphanages to syphon money and resources away from the needy.
The meeting was arranged to coincide with the Commonwealth heads of government in London.
An estimated 8 million children live in orphanages and other institutions across the world. More than 80 years of research has demonstrated that children raised in institutions are more likely to suffer life-long physical and psychological harm and experience dramatically reduced life chances.
Over 80 percent of children in institutions are not ‘orphans’ and have at least one living parent. Poverty, disability, and marginalization tear children from their families. Institutions often promise food, shelter and education – yet these promises are rarely delivered. There is a growing body of evidence highlighting how many children are being exploited: trafficked in and out of institutions, becoming victims of modern slavery. Read more “Modern Slavery: Orphanages”