Rawalpindi, (Parliament Times) : Founded by the Father of the Nation Quaid e Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah in 1943, Anjuman Faizul Islam (AFI) is home to more than 1000 orphan children, out of which a majority belongs to downtrodden areas of Baluchistan Province including KPK, Gilgit Baltistan, Sindh, AJK and different cities of the Punjab, said the President of Anjuman Faizul Islam (AFI) Professor Dr. Riaz Ahmed while talking to a group of journalists who visited the orphanage on Wednesday.
He told the reporters that Anjuman Faizul Islam is the biggest shelter for the orphans who not only have the boarding facilities here in Anjuman Faizul Islam but they also have the educational, skill development, health care, healthy meal, teaching of Islamic education and all other facilities sans any government support. “This orphanage was established on the behest of Quaid e Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah in 1943 to accommodate Muslim children who lost their parents in Bengal riots who were retrieved from there and lodged at that time in a rented house (Rs. 7 per month rent) in Committee Mohallah (Committee Chowk) Rawalpindi”, he added. Prof. Dr. Riaz Ahmed said at present AFI has 6 centers with its head office at Faizabad BBH (Murree) Road, Trunk Bazar Raja Bazar, New Campus GT Road Mandra, Pakkah Ghoh, Dobairan Kalan and Kalrian in Kalar Syedan. He said residential blocks of AFI are called “APNA GHAR” and all campuses have their mosques, libraries, dining halls, hospitals and dispensaries and other necessary facilities including vast play grounds. The annual budget of AFI is more than 210 million and all expenses met with the donations of philanthropists.
Dr. Riaz Ahmed said government-run orphanages in the whole country could barely accommodate less than 35 thousand orphans in its 35 shelter homes while privately run shelter homes also running short the space and facilities to accommodate not more than 5 to 7 per cent out of total 4.6 million population of orphan children in our dear homeland. “This segment of our society, due to unavailability of proper parental support or guidance and various other socio-economic factors remain one of the most vulnerable with the deprivation of health, education and other fundamental child rights”, he mentioned.
He told reporters that all campuses of AFI are equipped to provide not only school and technical education, boarding and healthcare facilities but inhabitants also have the access to libraries, computer labs, indoor and outdoor games, and various other co-curricular and extra-curricular facilities. He said the AFI is also promoting and maintaining the national harmony as the orphan children belonging to all provinces are residing and seeking education with a mind of Islamic brotherhood.
Prof. Dr. Riaz Ahmed further said AFI is playing its role very effectively in national reconstruction which need the attention of the government as well as the philanthropists to further enhance the facilities to accommodate more and more orphans.