With the recent high rates of baby dumping in the province and also in Durban The Peace Agency has announced that they will be establishing a new baby home in Umlazi, to meet the ever-growing need.

The agency took the decision after the dramatic three-hour rescue of a newborn baby from a stormwater drain in Newlands East.

This incident attracted international attention and, once again, highlighted the issue of child abandonment in South Africa. Then Peace Agency is now appealing to the public to donate funds to purchase and establish the much-needed new baby home. It
is estimated that at least 3500
babies are abandoned in South Africa every year, with KwaZulu-Natal experiencing a disproportionately high number of incidents. Just last week, a newborn baby was rescued from a medical waste bin outside King Edward Hospital in Durban.

To assist Child Welfare in accommodating these children, non-profit organisations like The Peace Agency, have established homes for these babies in dire need of safe care. These facilities provide the necessary care and support for infants, with the ultimate goal being to home these children with adoptive parents. However, many of these homes are already overburdened and the number of babies needing a caring home merely increases.

Founder of The Peace Agency,Justin Foxon said, “The reality is that a disproportionately low number of babies are adopted annually, yet
the number of children seeking a loving home, rises steadily. The opening of our uMlazi Baby Home will assist in meeting this need, by providing a caring, restorative space for babies traumatised by the most horrendous experiences. We will also continue to lobby for increased adoptions in the province in an effort to provide these children with a secure, loving forever home as quickly as possible.”

Foxton said through community support and assistance from the general public, they can make an incredible difference in the lives of these children. “In addition to housing vulnerable babies, the uMlazi Baby Home will also be a training centre for local women who are looking to be carers. These women provide an invaluable service to the community, acting as surrogate mothers to vulnerable children on a daily basis,” said Foxton

According to Marietjie Strydom, chairman of National Adoption Coalition of South Africa’s KZN branch, data from the Department of Social Development indicated that only 174 adoptions took place in a seven-year period in the province.

Strydom explained, ” The first days of any child’s life are incredibly important and the lack of care or broken bonds in early life leads to trauma that alters the physical brain and its functions permanently. This will have a lifetime of negative consequences.”

Strydom said uMlazi Baby Home
will have a hugely positive impact on the lives of some of the most vulnerable members of society and abandoned babies. For more information on the uMlazi Baby Home and to donate, please visit www.peaceagency.org.za