1. BABY LEFT: RESPONSIBLE PARENTHOOD, WHAT IS IT?
The public has not diminished reactions and indignation yet for the cruel death of a baby named
Najden, who with a cut tongue ended up thrown in a yard in Arachinovo, and the citizens were
shaken another cruel baby story - the four-month baby girl with head and body injuries was left on
the hood of a car in the center of Skopje. What did the poor innocent babies do wrong and how can
one play with their fate? - An issue that cannot be given a reasonable answer.
The First Children's Embassy say they do not find it difficult to fight for the rights of children, to
represent and protect them. They say it is difficult for them because those who have to take care the
most children – the parents, beat, abuse, rape and kill them. It hurts even more when institutions
instead of preventing situations to protect children, with their late reactions complicate the
problems of children. Terminating parental rights is a belated measure after a child has been abused
or killed by their own parents.
"Strict scrutiny for exercising quality parental rights is a serious challenge for all institutions and they
should realize that all parents are responsible and do not know how to care of children. If
responsible parenting is missing, it does not mean there should be absence of care by the state and
its institutions to help and support the children. Now there are no taboos and silence of children’s
sufferings. It requires responsibility, functionality and mobility of all. Of parents, of institutions, of
civil society organizations and the media," says Dragi Zmijanac, founder and director of the First
Children's Embassy MEGJASHI.
Strict penalties for parents - monsters!
2. The First Children’s Embassy Megjashi reminds us of the campaigns regarding the role of the parent
and the importance of responsible parenthood for proper growth and development of the child.
According to them, citizens remember well the slogans: Did you tell your child today how much you
love them? or Did you talk to your child today? The purpose of the campaign, they say, was
encouraging responsible parenthood. The more often you demonstrate love to children by hugging,
kissing and saying I love you to them, the more they will want to show that they deserve it. Love
enables building sense of self-confidence and self-respect in children. But, just hugging and saying to
the child that you love them is not enough. It is necessary to talk.
“There is neither education nor counseling on the importance of the parent and responsible
parenthood. Due to parental negligence to a child, there is a possibility of revoking the parental right
for a certain period of time, but it always happens as a belated measure when death or rape occurs.
Courts act slowly. Proceedings are long, and it increases the risk of repeating the violence on
children. It is worrying that centers, in most of the cases, do not know about the effects of the
imposed measures. The biggest problem in dealing with those cases is not the legislative, but it is the
lack of resources of the centres for social work and the lack of the trained social workers, the
absence of shelter for children-victims of violence. In such circumstances, children are obliged to
stay with their parents even in cases where they are beaten and maltreated by them”, adds Dragi
Zmijanac from Megjashi.
According to Articles 19, 34, 36, 39 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, states-signatories
commit to protect children from all forms of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse, to protect them
from physical or emotional violence, abuse and neglect of all forms of sexual exploitation and sexual
abuse, all other forms of exploitation harmful to the child and to take measures to promote physical
and psychological recovery, as well as social reintegration of a child victim.
The topic of responsible parenthood is a crucial and it entails responsibility regarding the essence of
the existence of a society, believes the psychologist Lidija Zorba. According to her, despite the
populist policy of requiring young people to become parents of a third child with the intention of
increasing the birth rate which has been declining for decades, the real situation regarding parenting
is very bad. On the one hand, there are more couples who are treated for infertility even in older age
who give a lot of money in private hospitals, on the other hand, many young hardly ever think of
getting married and giving birth to a child because society requires them to graduate, master, to buy
luxury apartments , to make great careers .
The young, believes Zorba, do not believe anymore in the pathetic filmed glorifications of the
parental role. The quickly find out that without economic security, life with a child is even more
3. insecure. Not only that. Running towards some social, European or other standards, people start
forgetting the real living needs, among them is the need to be a parent.
"Being a parent means first to give birth to a child with love and because of affection for your
partner, to be ready to be a good part of their life (time, energy, money, commitment) to devote to
bringing up a child. Being a responsible parent, it primarily means to be a responsible man or
woman. When man and woman are not mature to become parents, and yet the give birth to a child,
they risk never maturing and their child actually never to see a model of a mature father or mother.
When parents are not mature as individuals, the child usually becomes a burden, expense, fatigue,
excuse for many unfulfilled wishes of one or both parents, an excuse for divorce or staying married,"
says Lydia Zorba, MA, from the Center for Applied Psychology "Zorba Consulting".
She adds that when parents are not mature people, they do not enjoy the growth of the child; on
the contrary, they reject one way or another, or poured on them the fury of his own dissatisfaction
and feelings of deprivation. According to her, it is no secret that most parents beat their children, as
many children regularly see their parents fighting each other. It also is no secret that in the
orphanages, most of the children have one and some have two safe and healthy parents who just do
not want to take care of them!
Responsible parenthood is learnt at home!
According to psychologists, responsible or mature parenting is taught at home by their own parents.
If the child did not have a mature, responsible and dedicated parent, they themselves unconsciously
become such parent. Therefore, experts have concluded that it is crucial to educate young people
about how to mature in a way that implies responsibility for them and their families which they plan
to create. This cannot be achieved by religious populist campaigns, but the wise long-term social and
demographic policy through flexible and systematic projects that will be developed and
implemented thoroughly and professionally and will start as early as the first days of the upbringing
and education of current and prospective parents.
The fate of the four-month baby, which in the center of Skopje was left on the hood, Helsinki
Committee for Human Rights was interested. Here, according to them, the problem should be seen
deeper as the system to protect children living in social risk and dysfunctional families do not use all
mechanisms to detect and monitor the situation of children - potential victims of violence. Often
reactions arrive later because greater observance is not done by the services supposed to know
where can or occur such situations or where to expect such situations of services that need to know
where to place or to expect such reactions of leaving a child or its maltreatment, considers the
4. Helsinki Committee. They say, they will closely monitor the situation. It is the move of the
competent from the Centre for Social Care and the Ministry of Interior.
The four-month baby girl, according to the doctors, is now in stable condition and is under the
constant supervision at the Department of Intensive Care at the Skopje Clinic. The investigation
should determine what exactly happened on Saturday night and who and why played with the
baby’s fate, and still it is expecting clarification of the case of the baby Najden.