When a mother gave birth to a child in the midst of a drug and alcohol addiction, with additional charges of prostitution on her head, it can be all too tempting for the authorities to take the child away. This was the case with Jane.
Jane was in trouble due to the lifestyle she had found herself living. She had just given birth to a baby girl and within 36 hours of the child being born the local authorities wanted to take her away due to the mother’s past. This ensued legal proceedings; at which point we became involved, and the mother was given 26 weeks to prove that she could get clean. She had to prove for six weeks straight during that period of time that she was no longer taking drugs or alcohol.
We believe that no baby should be taken away from their mother if the mother can prove herself to be a good parent. We believed in Jane and we believed in the good of the cause so we supported Jane throughout this process, with Jas Tamber, taking the lead. Twenty weeks into the allocated timeframe, Jane had proven that she could go for five weeks without any form of intoxication. The transformation was remarkable and she had become a completely new person within this time. She was unrecognisable from the person she once was and yet, due to time constraints, the court still wanted to take the baby away.
We fought for Jane, standing up against the court and arguing that she needed more time. She had proven she could go five weeks; she needed more time to prove she could do the full six. Surely this was the better option rather than separating mother and child forever. The court granted her the time on the condition that she underwent a 16 week residential programme where she would be monitored under 24 hour supervision. The court wanted to make absolutely certain that she was not still using when they handed the baby back to her.
Jane passed the 16 week intensive period with ease and all because the court allowed for her to have a small amount of extra time. We persuaded them that she deserved a chance to fight for her daughter, to prove that she could be a good mother, and they agreed. They decided to give her the opportunity to overcome the adversity of addiction and to give the baby the life she deserved to have. Now mother and baby live together. Both are doing well and they are free to live out their lives together, holistically as mother and child, without any council or legal interference.
In this case we fought for the right to a family, a right every child deserves, and achieved what seemed like the impossible. Two lives were saved and a family was restored.
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