Department of Health and Human Services

The textbook states, that often orphanages “ignore the power and presence of local
communities and extended families in caring for orphans. Not only that, but many times
exacerbate the challenges faced by orphans because they contribute to the cycle of
‘attachment and abandonment,’ owning to the short-term nature of these volunteer efforts”
(p. 191). Evaluate this statement given what you know about the well-being of children. In
what situations would orphanages or institutions for children be appropriate options and
at what ages? How would a country’s Department or Ministry of Health apply a Health in
All Policies approach to address the economic and social issues presented in this statement?
I’m not sure about this statement. I feel like I can see both sides of this statement and agree
and disagree with this statement. For example, I can agree that a child needs stability in its
life. According to Ireland, (2017), One of a developing child’s greatest needs is a stability
when it comes to the care they receive (Ireland, 2017). So, to agree that that these short-
term volunteers can cause more harm than good is an accurate statement to make. If the
extended family is only to be available when it’s convenient for themselves then that can
leave the child feeling abandoned all over again. On the other side of the coin, I felt like it
takes a village to raise a child and the more people that a child has in its life the better
outcome of a child feeling loved can be achieved. I feel like orphanages or institutions
should be a last resort for a child. For example if a child has no living relatives who are
able to care for them then an orphanage can be an option to ensure that the child has the
best available care provided to them and they are able to find a family that can provide
them with a good life. As for an institution, I feel like that’s a tough one. I think that an
institution should be a last resort for a child. I work with the Medicaid population and I see
many elderly members who are caring for disabled children who have no other forms of
support if the parents pass, and a state institution would be their only option. Some are not
able to teach their children to be self-sufficient due to the severe level of care their children
require, so an institution would be the only way for their children to be properly cared for
after they pass. I don’t really think there is an appropriate age to place a child into a
facility as much as the need to place them in one would call for. The Department of Health
and Human Services protects the health of all Americans and provides essential human
services (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2020). The department of health
is able to enforce a health in all policies by providing equal basic care to those who are in
these facilities, to ensure that they are properly cared for and have the options that anyone
else would have outside of these facilities. They are able to provide medications and
treatments for those who have the need and are able to assist families who are adopting
children from orphanages with basic medical care options.
Reference
Ireland, J. M. (2017). Chapter 10: Orphans and Vulnerable Children. In For the love of
God: Principles and practice of compassion in missions (p. 191). Eugene, OR: Wipf and
Stock.

RESPONSE TO CLAUDIA BEGLEY 2
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2020).

Response

I concur with Claudia that the statement evokes both supporting and opposing sentiments based
on different perspectives. For instance, akin to Claudia, I agree that children, regardless of age,
require stability in the care they receive during their growth and development. As such, the
detachment and lack of investment among the staff in institutional care settings or orphanages
lead to the development of the feeling of abandonment among the children. Besides, failure of
the extended family members to become involved in the child’s development destabilizes their
foundational bond, which is ultimately detrimental to the cognitive and emotional well-being.
Conversely, the case of Ireland plays a pivotal role in the depiction of the fact that raising a child
takes a village as it facilitates the attainment of better outcomes that include improved self-
esteem and an increased sense of belonging (Huynh et al. 2019).
Based on the two perspectives, I concur with Claudia that orphanages should be the last
resort for orphans or children separated from their families. Similarly, no age is appropriate for
the placement of a child in an orphanage. Still, in situations where elderly members carry on the
task of caring for the children, it is then prudent to institutionalize them. However, increased
involvement of governmental bodies and entities into the care practices applied within
orphanages would foster the availability of the necessary resources to safeguard the child’s
welfare and influence their development (Huynh et al. 2019).

RESPONSE TO CLAUDIA BEGLEY 3

References

Huynh, H. V., Limber, S. P., Gray, C. L., Thompson, M. P., Wasonga, A. I., Vann, V.,
Itemba, D., Eticha, M., Madan, I., & Whetten, K. (2019). Factors affecting the
psychosocial well-being of orphan and separated children in five low- and middle-
income countries: Which is more important, quality of care or care setting? PLOS
ONE, 14(6), e0218100. 

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