According to INSAF president Meriem Othmani, the number of babies abandoned in the streets is estimated between 2,000 and 5,000 each year.
Morocco’s National Institute for Solidarity with Women in Distress (INSAF) has supported 10,000 single mothers since its creation 20 years ago, the institution’s president announced in a recent interview.
Speaking to Morocco’s state media, INSAF institute’s founding president Meriem Othmani highlighted the institution’s efforts in helping distressed single mothers.
Othmani noted INSAF’s work on the project for the empowerment of single mothers, saying the scheme has produced concrete results in helping transform the lives of a large number of women in distress.
The president also noted the absence of the exact number of children born out of wedlock, adding that the number of babies abandoned in the streets is estimated between 2,000 and 5,000 each year. The institute aims to fight against this issue in particular.
According to Othmani, the main cause of babies’ abandonment is due to mothers hiding their pregnancies from their families. This makes it particularly difficult for the concerned women to follow the required procedures at the police station and court to complete the Kafala (adoption or guardianship) process.
Othmani noted, however, a slight improvement in the registration of babies born out of wedlock.
INSAF also works to restore mothers’ self-confidence and dignity, as well as giving them hope for a better life. The institute does this through vocational training courses and rehabilitation programs that are available for vulnerable, distressed mothers.
As part of this hope and rehabilitation scheme, the institute also helps the women find employment and stays in touch with them for two years, during which it provides them with medical assistance. The goal, Othmani insisted, is to accompany the women through some financial obstacles, while helping them cope with society’s judgments and prejudices.
In addition to assisting single mothers in registering their children and helping them get back on their feet, the INSAF association also works continuously on improving the living conditions of people in challenging situations.
In April 2020, INSAF initiated a solidarity campaign in Chichaoua near Marrakech, where they collaborated with local authorities to assist families in nearby rural villages.
Targeting populations who have been hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and its attendant challenges, the campaign distributed food to 150 needy families in nearby rural villages.
The following month, the association launched an operation to assist sub-Saharan migrants in Morocco during the COVID-19 pandemic, distributing food supplies, face 40,000 masks, hundreds of liters of bleach, and 8,000 bars of soap to migrants living in Casablanca.