Government must provide more childcare facilities

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 26 September, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 26 September, 2007, 12:00am

A further accident at the weekend involving a child should arouse the public's concern about those children who are left without care ('Home-alone alarm after boy badly hurt in blaze', September 23).

In fact, there are a number of reasons why this problem exists in our society. Many parents now have to go to work every day and leave their children at home.

This means the child can do anything as they are not supervised.

This puts them at high risk as they could hurt themselves if they handled knives or played with matches.

In the past, families were larger. The grandparents or the child's mother took care of the child.

Now, things have changed. Families are smaller and you might only have a father, mother and one child.

In some cases, where the family is suffering financial problems, both parents go out to work just to make ends meet.

Another trend I have noticed is that there are many younger parents, with some being still only teenagers. They are immature and have very little experience of looking after children.

Given the changes in society, which have put some children at risk, the government must allocate more resources, as soon as possible, to improve childcare services.

More centres should be established, where children can be cared for.

There should also be more counselling services for at-risk families, so that the message gets across to parents that they must look after their children at all times.

Ultimately, it comes down to better education of young people, so they appreciate the problems associated with having a child when you are still very young. They should be advised to act responsibly.

Those young women who do become pregnant need to be given guidance, so that once the baby is born, he or she is properly cared for.

These children are our future.

We must ensure they are protected and cared for.

Au Kin-pong, Lai Chi Kok