Children under the protection of the law in Brunei Darussalam will soon be housed in a home-based facility next to the Welfare Home Complex in Kampong Belimbing.
The construction of the new facility which can accommodate 70 children will be completed by next October, said Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Aminuddin Ihsan bin Pehin Orang Kaya Saiful Mulok Dato Seri Paduka Haji Abidin.
The project of constructing Rumah Perlindungan Kanak-Kanak (Children’s Protection Home) was revealed by the minister during an interview with the media on the sidelines of Universal Children’s Day celebration at the Jerudong Park Colonnade yesterday.
“Children protected by law are based in the Welfare Home Complex which is not an ideal home environment,” Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Aminuddin Ihsan said. “The construction of the new building started last week and will be completed by October next year.”
The minister said the building will have separate wings for males and females able to accommodate some 70 children in a home-based environment.
“We want the children to feel at home so that they will not feel as though they are confined,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Brunei Darussalam’s National Child Protection Framework, he said is in the final phase. Once approved, it will be shared with the public.
The minister explained that the framework incorporates a whole-of-government approach to ensure every government agency understands its role and responsibilities.
“The comprehensive framework also comprises best practices from other countries, in line with the international children framework,” he said.
The minister also highlighted the importance of family institution as pointed out at the recent Friday sermon.
“When we talk about child protection, we need to start from the beginning. The Hope Line 145 and Helpline 141 are important as the talking point is mental health.
“We do have the right platform but need to strengthen it. Family institution is one of the most important platforms. When everything is in place and everybody understands its importance, things will be better and we will be heading in the right direction.”
Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Aminuddin Ihsan in his message for Universal Children’s Day highlighted the theme of the celebration which is ‘Reimagine a Better World’.
He said, “His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam’s Government always pays attention to children’s well-being.
“Our children must be cared for and protected. Most importantly, focus should be given to children’s interests.
“The government will also continue to increase protection provided to children, children’s rights and ensure that children are always taken care of.”