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Ministry of Gender Equality, Child Development and Family Welfare

FAQs

Frequently asked questions

1. What activities are run by the centres?

26. How long does it take to become a Foster parent?




1. What are the activities run in the centre?

The centres offer informative, education, training and recreational activities for women and the family.  A wide range of free courses is offered with the objective of further empowering the status of women in Mauritius.  Amongst we have hairdressing, beauty care, yoga, glass painting, and handicraft.  Besides, various sensitizations programmes are organized.  We also have various clubs and associations attached to the centres such as agricultural clubs, sports clubs, women associations.
 
You can go to the centre nearest to your place.  Enroll for any of the courses run at the centre.  If you do not want to enroll for any course you can still benefit from the facilities offered at the centre by participating in the various education, informative and recreational activities held at the centre.
There are 12 women centres spread throughout the island.  They are as follows:

Sn

Name of Centre
Tel No.
1.
Lady Sushil Ramgoolam Women Centre
Royal Rd
Bambous
 
4520460
2.
Abercrombie Women Centre
Nicolay Rd
Abercrombie
 
2165723
3.
Triolet Women Centre
Dispensary Rd
Triolet
 
2613035
4.
Indira Gandhi Women Centre
Prayag Complex
Riviere du Rempart
 
4127565
5.
Flacq Women Centre
A coté du stade Auguste Volaire
Flacq
 
4132124
6.
Valetta Women Centre
Royal Rd
Valetta
 
4338626
7.
Lallmatie Women Centre
NDU Complex
Royal Rd
LALLMATIE
 
4180416
8.
Mare D'Albert
 
6274379
9.
Britannia Women Centre
Royal Rd
Britannia
 
6263782
10.
Floreal Women Centre
Pierre Simonet Street
Floreal
 
6980034/6971152
11.
France Boyer de la Giroday Women Centre
26 Rte du Club
Vacoas
 
6980261/6961462
12.
Rose Hill Women centre
Labourdonnais Street
Opp Orian Centre
Rose Hill
4658718/4659628
Each centre has a calendar.  All training activities are run from Monday-Friday between 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.  Sensitisation activities may occur after normal office hours.
I can learn on issues regarding women like legal, health issues.  I can also have access to free training.  The courses and sensitization will not only help me as a woman but also help my family. 
 
No.  Children can join the KITES Club for creativity activities.  Couples are encouraged to join for sensitization activities.
 
Some sensitisations are done on Saturdays depending on the calendar of activities.  KITES Club for children up to 18 years old are open on Saturdays.
Yes. All the courses offered at the centre are free of charge.
You can follow at least two courses at the centre.
No.  The courses are not yet MQA approved.
For 3-month courses you will be given an attendance certificate.  And for 6 months and 10-months courses, you will have to sit for an exam after which you will be awarded a certificate which is recognized only by the Ministry not by outside bodies.
 
Enrolment for the courses is opened throughout the year.  You can go to the nearest centre in your neighbourhood.
 
After registration, you will be convened to attend the course you have chosen as and when the courses start.  The rule followed in this context is on a first come, first served basis.
 
Young girls, school drop-outs, women staying at home, working women are all welcomed.
 
16. What is the Child Development Unit (CDU)?

The CDU is the executive arm of the Ministry to deals with the cases of:
          (a)      Child Abuse
                             - Physical
                             - Sexual
                             - Emotional
                             - Neglect
          (b)      Child Abduction
          (c)      Foster Care
          (d)      Tardy Declaration
          (e)      Early Childhood Development (ECD)
Intervention is carried out :
-     To make enquiries where it is suspected that a child is being exposed to harm or       
danger.
-        To provide advice and counselling to parents with problems leading to ill-         treatment of children.
-        To make and keep regular contacts with problem families with a view to ensuring        that the children are not exposed to harm of any kind.
-        To brief District Magistrates on cases requiring Emergency Protection Orders and        Committal Orders.
-        To provide information to the public at large about the Child Protection Act and         the possible consequences of non-compliance with the provisions of the Act through talks, lectures, seminars, and workshops in Youth Clubs, Schools,           Colleges, Social Welfare Centres and Community Centres.
-   Intervene into cases of child abuse
-   Assist victims of child abuse in recording of statement by the police.
-   Counselling
-   Legal Advice
-   Rehabilitation & Reintegration of Children in their Families.
-   Placement of children in place of safety
-   Psychological support
-   Referral services 
 
Cases can be reported at the CDU without revealing one's identity.
 
Hot-Line: 113
Family Support Bureau                                           Tel. No.
Bell-Village                                                       2130668
Goodlands                                                      2834900
Flacq                                                            4131390
Bambous                                                          4525900
Floreal                                                           6983700
Mare d'Albert                                                    6271600
20. What is CDU/Child Protection Unit?

The CDU/Child Protection Unit (CPU) is a unit where Child Welfare Officers work together with the Police Officers.  It is operational at Floreal, Bell-Village, Mare D?Albert, Flacq and Goodlands

At the CPU, joint investigations and interviews are carried out by the Child Welfare Officers and the Police and the main purpose behind that is to minimize trauma of victims of child abuse. 
 
 
The need of CDU/CPU has arised in an endeavour to reduce the further traumatic situation that a child undergoes by giving long statement at police station level.  Especially sexually abused children.

The child is only once interviewed in the presence of Child Welfare Officer, a Police Officer in civilian dress and a psychologist.

The victims do not have to attend police stations.  Statement is further channelled to the Police Inspector of the police station.


22. How does the CDU/CPU operates?

Cases of child abuse are referred by the public in general, medical practitioners, teachers and all institutions dealing with children's issues.

Home visits are affected by officers.

Children are removed from the dangerous places and placed in a temporary shelter of the Ministry through issue of an Emergency Protection Order by the District Magistrate.
Actions are taken at  - Child level
- Parent level
- Interactional level
- Family level
- Community level.
Referral are made to other agencies depending on the nature of cases.


23. What is the Community Child Protection Programme?
 
It is a formal forum to ensure community development with respect to child protection and welfare.  This programme will allow for interplay of dynamic top down and bottom up forces to provide for equilibrium in an otherwise open system, and as such will be a recipient of much information, education and communication campaign as well as empowerment processes.
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(a)     To create awareness and opportunities for appropriate "homee grown" capacity building for people inerested in working for the welfare of children.
(b)     To encourage and enable prevention rather than reacting to cases of child abuse and neglect as well as violence against children.
(c)     To act as a surveillance mechanism to identify children at risk and victims of abuse.
(d)     To encourage the reporting of any suspected case of child abuse to the Ministry where appropriate remedial action is initiated.
(e)     To arouse consciousness on the problem of child abuse, neglect and violence against children
(f)     To encourage solidarity and a co-ordinated approach to the problem of child abuse
(g)    To better protect children against risks of degradation of international environment
(h)    To involve community action in the prevention of child abuse and rehabilitation of children, victims of abuse and neglect..
(i)     To ensure better handling and monitoring of cases reported to the Ministry through case conferencing at FSB level and through Area Child Protection Committees that will feed into a National Child Protection Committee chaired by the Minister.
(j)     To ensure that the community owns child protection projects and activities and also understand the notion of accountability with respect to violence against children.
(k)     To allow for interface and mediation between service provider and service user.
(l)      To enable timely evaluation of Child Protection Policies.
(m)     To inculcate a culture of non-violence as per the child rights based perspective within families and communities.
 
OPERATION
 
The Community Child Protection Programme will comprise of the following:
The District Child Protection Committees to take cognizance, review and monitor Child Protection issues at their level.
 
The Community Child Watch to be set up in the immediate locality of high risk areas to ensure early detection and reporting of child at risk cases.
 
The Case Conference at Family Support Bureau level with officers of the Ministry to review and monitor the handling of cases and so to expedite as far as possible on lessening trauma and trigger early rehabilitation of children victims of abuse and neglect.
 
The Area Child Protection Committee comprising regional stakeholders to ensure better collaboration and coordination in the handling of cases.
 
The National Child Protection Committee to coordinate and monitor the work of the 6 ACPCs, to develop and agree on policies, review and monitor procedures for inter-agency work for protection of children, to make appropriate recommendation to ensure coordination and concrete action, including training/IEC in relation to Child Protection.
 
 
 Individual/s willing to become foster parent/s are required to fill in application forms which are submitted together with necessary documents. The application forms are then processed.
    For any information, contact:

             The Foster Care Unit
             3rd floor, CSK Building
             Cnr Rémy Ollier and Emmanuel Anquetil Building
             Port Louis
                Mauritius                
             Tel: 217-0418
                   240-1359

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After the submission of the application forms, the documents are screened at the level of the sub-committee of the Foster Care Advisory Committee. It is then recommend that at Home Study Visit be effected at the place of residence of the foster care applicants. The outcomes of the visit are then discussed at the level of the sub-committee of the Foster Care Advisory Committee. Recommendations are then made to the Foster Care  Advisory Committee for the registration of the applicant as foster parent.
It takes a maximum of three months for an applicant to be registered as foster parent if no problems are identified.
A child can be placed with an applicant as soon as the latter is registered as foster parent.
It might also take some time for a child meeting all the characteristics requested by the applicant to be  identified.
The length of stay of a child with his foster parent depends on the specific circumstances of the biological parents of the child. Initially, the length of stay may range from 2 weeks to two years.
 
 
Yes. However, the adoption procedures should be undertaken at the Supreme Court at the expenses of the foster parent. The Ministry does not interfere in the procedures.
 
Children aged from a few days to 18 years old can be placed in foster families.