There’s no real “How to guide” on how to start raising awareness for these kinds of things – you can Google and you’ll find some information on what is being done by different organisations, heartbreaking stats or articles and information about adoption.
This series isn’t a “how to guide” or some kind of checklist on what you can do to raise awareness (although, I will definitely put something together on that subject) but rather my own experience on what I learn throughout this journey and I would like to share that with you – perhaps this will trigger that one small thing you need to start taking action or to keep you going.
It all started about a year back when I was pregnant with our twin boys, I read a horrific article on a baby that was abandoned and sadly couldn’t be rescued in time. Previously I have heard about these things but always just thought “ag shame, poor baby” and it never went anywhere. This time round it stuck with me – kept on haunting me with every new article that came past. I knew that I had to do something about his but could never get a clear answer on what that something was.
The boys were born and everything went well (well, as good as it gets with twins :-)), a few more articles came past and eventually my sister in law told me about Door of Hope. I started following them & Helderberg Baby Saver on Facebook and that just opened the floodgates.
At least every week I read and felt distraught about each and every baby that got abandoned until about 2 weeks ago when they found 2 babies in an area in which we used to live. Both babies didnt make it – they were found in dustbins – one of them in a plastic bread packet. A plastic bread packet.
I was mad, I hated these women for doing this, I couldn’t understand. How? How can you dump a precious baby, a baby that can’t move or speak or do anything to get out of a dustbin full of trash?
I did some more reading about why this happens and the reasons behind this are awful. These women see this as their only option – some do this without the intent of letting the baby die, but this is rarely the case. In fact, according to the Choose to Care campaign – 2 out of every 3 abandoned babies die. That’s two babies too many.
If you have 3 children – which two would you let die. Or if you have two….. I’m not saying you will let your children die, please don’t get me wrong. But I’m putting another perspective on this.
We can’t blame these women who suffer from these horrible conditions like abuse, rape or poverty – but we can start changing things by tackling the problem at the source instead of only treating the symptoms.
How would these women or young girls know about other legal options if nobody tells them about it. It’s not something that can be fixed overnight as we’re dealing with people’s emotions and lives. It will take time. But for every baby given up instead of being dumped – it is a win.
We’re not building Rome in a day, but we need to get more people actively involved by taking action. Sharing a few Facebook posts won’t help all that much, but if it can convince someone (like it did for me) to do something about it instead of just saying “ag shame”, then that’s what we will start off doing.
It all starts with a simple “hello”.
Image credit: Helderberg Baby Saver