The abandoning of newborns is rising in Europe. In the UK The number of cases of babies being abandoned by their mothers has tripled in the last decade. Efforts to reduce the number of newborns who die as a result of abandonment include:
In Germany, efforts to pass a law providing a sort of postal drop off box for the anonymous placement of babies. Mothers could place the baby in a warm compartment, accessible from outside a building. An alarm would sound at a hospital next door, and the baby picked up within ten minutes. Babies would be kept for several weeks, and if the mother does not come forward to retrieve her child by then, the baby would be put up for adoption.
In Italy an Italian children's charity is placing adhesive stickers on public rubbish bins encouraging women not to abandon newborn babies. Rubbish bins are the most common forms of dumping grounds, but babies have also been discovered in plastic bags, washing machines and cupboards.
As critics of these remedies point out, they do not address the causes of abandonment. Why are mothers abandoning their children in the first place? What makes them take such a wrenching and desperate step? Prevention of unwanted pregnancy, support of women during pregnancy and afterward would seem to be the real solution to the problem, one of wholesome and safe prevention.
What can you do?
What can your organization do?
What project could you launch to help prevent abandonment of babies?