Muhammadiyah Association is fifth fostering agency
Muhammadiyah Association (MA) has been appointed as the fifth fostering agency, the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) announced yesterday.
The appointment, in a bid to grow fostering in Singapore, took effect from Aug 1, MSF added.
The non-profit association joints four other fostering agencies - Epworth Community Services, Boys' Town, Persatuan Pemudi Islam Singapura and The Salvation Army - which were appointed between 2015 and 2017.
In Parliament on Wednesday, Minister for Social and Family Development, Mr Desmond Lee, stressed that foster care is the preferred option when it comes to placing children who need to be taken away from their homes.
He added that the authorities hope to be able to increase the number of children placed in foster homes, as opposed to group homes. As of June, there were 510 foster families and 542 foster children.
Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Social and Family Development, Associate Professor Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim, said:"We are grateful to our foster parents who have opened their hearts and homes to our vulnerable children.
"With the recent passing of the Children and Young Persons (Amendment) Bill in Parliament, we have stepped up our efforts to give better support to foster parents by extending childcare leave benefits to them. We hope that more families will step forward to care for our vulnerable children."
MA has provided over 60 years of service to the community and has forged strong connections with groups of professionals and individuals in the Malay-Muslim community.
As part of the on-going outreach efforts, there will be fostering roadshows at Clementi Mall from today till Sept 8, and at Wisma Geylang Serai on Sept 8.