The murky world of Orphanage Tourism

Recent UNICEF reports suggest that there are more than 200 million orphan children worldwide.  This figure rises drastically when taking into consideration the number children (millions) who are abandoned, sold and/or trafficked around the world.

As the number of vulnerable and abandoned children continue to rise, it is no surprise that large numbers of orphanages are regularly established in attempts to address the problem and provide love and kindness to affected children.  Although there are some genuine and sincere humanitarians who exert maximum efforts to aid the affected and alleviate their burden, there are also unscrupulous individuals and networks that deliberately exploit such situations as a means of obtaining huge financial rewards for themselves, subsequently causing further suffering to the affected children.

In a recent article with Tourism Concern, Benedicta Bywater, founder of Safe Haven Children’s Trust, exemplifies the rise in Orphanage Tourism and the various factors that hinder the drive to eradicate the practice of abandoning children, and halt the establishment of unnecessary orphanages worldwide.  The article raises serious concerns not only about the way in which orphanages operate, but also about the treatment of orphans and abandoned children.   

Safe Haven Children’s Trust was thus established as a solution to the problem and focusses more on providing affected children with the necessary tools to enable them to reintegrate back into society, and in the case of abandoned children, to be reunited with their families.

You can read the full Tourism Concern article here

 

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Our blogs are written by Amnesty International staff, volunteers and other interested individuals, to encourage debate around human rights issues. They do not necessarily represent the views of Amnesty International.
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