An orphanage is a residential institution devoted to the care of orphans and vulnerable children – children whose biological parents are deceased or otherwise unable or unwilling to care for them. Biological parents, and sometimes biological grandparents, are legally responsible for supporting children, but in the absence of these or other relatives willing to care for the children, they become government children and orphanages are one way of providing for their care, housing and education.
Orphanage or Motherless babies have nowadays become common because of the moral decadence of the society where young people who cannot cater for themselves find themselves put in the family way. These girls end up abandoning those innocent helpless babies.
An exemplary orphanage of note is Rachael’s Home Abuja. It was founded by Rev. Rachael Alaje in the nineties; a few years after she got married. She got married after passing out of secondary school. According to her, the reason behind the venture was to help give succor to less privileged in the society. “My reason for this initiative is because I was brought up as an orphan. I told my God that if I lay my hands on anything, I will try to help humanity”, she admitted.
Rev. Rachael said she started child bearing alongside running the Home. And that people do not know the difference between her biological children and children from the Home as she does not discriminate. Ten children from the Home have graduated from tertiary institutions (NCE, HND, and BSc). Six among them have got married. Presently the home has over 30 children.
She explained how she gets children for the home. According to her people send abandoned children to her. The police also refer vulnerable children to her Home. She also said some indigent parents send their wards to her. These types of children reunite with their parents when the parents might have starting having improvement in their income.
Like other Homes, the biggest need of the home is always money. The home needs money for; foods, school fees and transport for the 8 children who are in secondary schools. Their transport fair is over two thousand naira daily. Other things are medication and dresses.
Rachael’s Home source of income primarily is from the income of the founder and her husband. Rev. Rachael said that International Praise Church has been paying salaries of the staff of the home for years. Also Dunamis Church do send gifts to the home every month. Other sources of income are donations from kind hearted individuals and organizations.
On the young girls that contribute most of the children in orphanages through unwanted pregnancy, she advised them to listen to the advice of their parents and strive to go to school or learn trade. She gave example with herself; how she got married after secondary school, but out of sheer doggedness has got her Master’s degree and said she will get doctorate degree.