The Kenyan government, as articulated by Labour and Social Protection Cabinet Secretary Florence Bore, intends to eliminate all privately-owned children’s homes and orphanages. Bore stated during her speech in Isiolo County that only government-owned homes, operating under the Child Welfare Society of Kenya, will be permitted to continue their operations. She emphasized that private homes have served as channels for child trafficking.
Bore explained that the decision to shut down private homes is in accordance with the Children’s Act, which mandates the closure of such institutions. Additionally, these private homes have been implicated in child trafficking cases, prompting the government to prioritize the retention of institutions managed by the Child Welfare Society of Kenya.
The government plans to implement these changes over the course of eight years, as mentioned by the Social Protection Cabinet Secretary. She emphasized the need for adequate preparation to accommodate children who will transition from private homes.
Furthermore, the Children’s Act aims to uphold children’s rights by ensuring they grow up within families and communities. According to data from the Social Protection department, as of November 2022, there are approximately 45,000 to 50,000 children residing in around 855 privately-run charitable children’s institutions, while others are living in government-run facilities.