THE Social Welfare Ministry has recorded 148 abandoned children who are being kept in homes around the country.
And as part of its recent profiling on beggars on our streets, Welfare Minister Dr Jiko Luveni revealed 10 mothers, most of whom were with their children begging, were assisted through their welfare programs.
"These children now under State care in homes are those that have been abandoned by their families or because their home environment was not safe for their wellbeing and protection," Dr Luveni said.
"For those children involved in begging, the thing is that most are only being used by parents to solicit compassion by people so that they are able to donate to them.
"They are being used, so we have done a profiling of the situation of families and these children and based on that we have removed some of them from the streets because it is against the law that parents use these children for these purposes."
Dr Luveni said the sad situation was that some of these children were actually living with their parents and had been used again to beg for their family life.
The ministry also revealed that it is exploring areas of employment and income generating opportunities for 40 beggars who have been profiled in Suva.