Article By Winnie Kabintie
Last week, the state of Indiana (USA) launched Special ‘baby boxes‘ that will allow desperate mothers to safely drop off unwanted babies, after pro-life groups won the right to install them.
The “safe haven baby boxes”, which have been installed at fire stations, aim to provide an alternative to abortion and also reduce the no of infant deaths.
The baby boxes are climate controlled, padded and heated and a parent can anonymously safely deposit a baby inside and once that is done an internal alarm goes off alerting firefighters on duty to come and pick it up.
Judging from the views gathered online in various online platforms including the popular Facebook page “Kilimani Mums “Kenyan Women have warmed up to the idea arguing that Kenya should adopt the concept in order to save lives of babies who are dumped in latrines and rivers.
Elizabeth: Safer than a baby in latrines, rivers garbage sites etc…It’s a good idea which should be encouraged.
Mary:I support the idea. It has worked for others and I see no reason it would not in Kenya.
Monique: Fantastic idea. Why let a baby get dumped in a pit latrine when they would have a legal option to surrender the child?
Jessica: If we had efficient emergency response infrastructure in Kenya this would be great.
BABY HATCHES AN ANCIENT PRACTICE
The concept of safe baby safes, also known as baby hatches, is not new and dates back to the middle Ages and in the 18th and 19th centuries, when the device was known as a foundling wheel. Since 2000 many countries, notably Germany, Pakistan and Italy adopted the concept with around 100 and 300 hatches respectively. Read more…
The hatches are usually in hospitals, social centers, or churches.
In Africa, Door of Hope Children’s Mission in South Africa introduced the baby safes, locally referred to as “the hole in the wall” in 2011 amid controversy from children rights groups. Read more…
KENYA SHOULD INTRODUCE BABY DEPOSIT BOXES FOR UNWANTED KIDS
In my opinion, Kenya should consider the concept of installing the safe haven boxes for unwanted kids considering that although abortion is illegal in the country, it’s still very rampant and there is also a growing number of children who are dumped on dump sites and much worse in pit latrines and rivers.
I know some people argue that “there is nothing like an unwanted baby” but I think that’s burying our heads in the sand especially for a third world country, grappling with high rates of poverty. Circumstances push people to desperate measures and I think such matters are better addressed through logic than emotions.
A survey released by the African Population and Health Research Center in August last year revealed that there were 464,690 abortions procured in Kenya in 2014. Read more… Even though most of the women who procure abortion more often than not are just not willing to carry the pregnancy to term, the baby safe havens would provide a safer, reliable and efficient alternative to those that give birth and just don’t know what to do with the babies the only flip side is that this is Kenya and someone might just fail to turn up and open the box on time to collect the dropped off babies!