Social affairs minister mulls foster parents for orphans
Social Affairs Minister Majed Al-Qassabi recently made an exploratory trip to the Eastern Province aimed at “improving social work and service systems.”
During his visit, the minister met with international and local leaders specializing in the human resources development field. One important topic discussed was the international experience in provide orphans with foster parents.
Al-Qassabi discussed with Michael Green, the executive director of the Social Progress Imperative, the plans and strategies for the systematic development of community affairs, and the advancement of social services through a social progress index which tracks the progress of countries in social work. The two also discussed opportunities for cooperation, and how the Kingdom could apply measurable social indicators in the government and the private non-profit sector.
During a meeting with Jacob Harold, the chief executive officer of GuideStar, the men discussed ways to develop and activate the social role and strategic actions to raise the level of social services in local and regional communities. The minister was briefed on the works of GuideStar in gathering data and information from the non-profit sector in order to implement statistical studies and present them to the public.
Al-Qassabi said his ministry intended to share any information with the private non-profit sector and then establish a technological system to process the gathered data and turn it into results for the community.
The minister also discussed with Richard Pichler, CEO/secretary-general of SOS Children’s Villages International, an organization which cares for orphans and displaced children, providing an incubator environment with foster parents. This would help children in specialized programs and activities aligned with the latest developments in children’s services and how to apply the SOS model in the Kingdom.