When children’s parents dies, divorce or abandon their
children in a smaller village it is often the grandmother of the child that
takes responsibility and care of the child. When it is a tradition in the
Philippines that the mother cares about the children, it becomes also naturally
that the mother of the child’s mother step in the roll as a mother if the mother
of the child dies or abandon the child. Even when the parents divorce or the
mother becomes left alone, the child’s mother moves into the house of her
parents with her children. The grandfather mostly takes over the obligation of
maintaining the children from the father too.
The consequences of this are that the parents loose their
custody in the practical life. By law the parents still have the custody but it
is very difficult to fight against the tradition of the people and the
grandmother that have the right to decide for the best of the children’s future
This is a tradition that originally came from the Catholic
Church because it is forbidden to divorce due to its rules. The grandmother is
in this case protecting her daughter from the shame by taking over the custody
since she is still correctly married due to these rules.
If the parents eventually decease it is the Godparents that
take custody of the child/children.
The consequences of this can be quite striking because there
can be several Godfathers and Godmothers that together shall decide were/with
whom the child/children will live and how the future shall be.
Childless couples or families who want to adopt a child can
therefore make an agreement with the grandparents and/or the Godparents about
the possibility to adopt a child.
This action is not working by natural reasons in the bigger
cities where people and families come together from different places to find
success. Children is borne and abandoned i.e. owing to prostitution, sickness,
malformation etc. which creates a tangled heap of lost, hungry, uneducated
people in the cities slum land.
In the Philippines, that has a tropic climate, many children
and families live often here, there and everywhere in the city, under bridges,
in crossings, often in or on a carton that they easy can lift aside during