Our children’s welfare is keyre is key
Posted Sunday, March 17 2013 at 02:00
Hardly a day passes without reading or hearing about the wanton suffering of children. The relevant laws to protect children exist but crime against the young generation is on the rise. From physical torture, the uncouthness against children now manifests in different forms.
Central in this is the dwindling role of parents in nurturing children either due to tight work schedules or outright negligence. But it’s important to factor good parenting in our national development goals. This should start with keeping the family unit intact because the family plays an important role in the transmission of values.
Scholars have categorised values as either intrinsic i.e. those that reflect natural growth tendencies related to personal growth, close relationships and community contribution or extrinsic values like wealth, fame, and attractiveness.
While extrinsic values which largely focus on materialistic pursuits depend on the reaction of others, intrinsic values largely depend of the role of parents. However, with the increasing distance between parents and their children because of work demands among others, the role of a supportive family in nurturing children into community oriented adults has been undermined.
It is not surprising that many of our youth today rate materialistic pursuits like fame, wealth and public image higher than close relationship with people and community participation.
The media targets the young and advertising is now shaping the values of our children by transmitting a wrong message that materialism leads to happiness.
This is a dangerous trend. We need to rediscover the centrality of a family unit in defining our value system. Our labour laws need not undermine good parenting. Many working parents today are at cross-roads because they hardly get time for family, therefore; children are left either at day care centers or with ill-mannered house helps.
The state needs to protect family by ensuring parents are able to provide a supportive family environment to children. Employers as well need to be given the rules. Let us think about the child first because that is the future.