updated 21 Oct 2010, 14:14
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Thu, Aug 19, 2010
The New Paper
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Girl's mum leaves daughter in lurch
by Amanda Yong

THE 18-year-old aunt, Jane, had told The New Paper that despite her repeated pleas, Sarah's mother, Kate, had not shown up to take her child back.

For the past seven months, Jane had communicated with Kate only through SMS as the latter did not answer her calls. Mary, the little girl's current caregiver, is now facing the same problem.

She said: "The last time I heard from Kate was a few months ago when we told her we were sending Sarah to a children's home. "She sent me an SMS saying she was in a hard situation and promised to come and take Sarah back."

But she never did and Kate has remained uncontactable since.

Could Kate be in trouble? Mary doesn't think so.

Quite the opposite, Mary said. "I'm angry because I just saw the photos she posted on her Facebook account, and from the photos, she looks like she's living a happy life, enjoying every moment," she said.

"On her Facebook (updates), she says she's drunk every day and there are photos of her with different men." "It's as if Sarah is nothing to her."

Which was why Mary was surprised when the social worker she had approached for help managed to contact Kate. Only chance The social worker arranged to meet Kate last night.

"The social worker warned her this would be her only chance. If she doesn't turn up, Sarah will be sent to a girl's home," Mary said. "But based on her 'pattern', I'm not confident she'll turn up."

She said that she and the social worker had talked about letting Sarah be at the meeting, but she decided against it as she thought it likely Kate would be a no-show.

"But (Sarah) will not be disappointed. She's already quite used to it," said Mary.

The New Paper was unable to confirm if Kate had turned up for the meeting. Calls to the social worker's mobile phone last night went unanswered.

Much depends on the outcome of that meeting, if it did take place.

Said Mary: "It depends on what Kate says and what her plans for Sarah are. (Kate) told the social worker she doesn't want Sarah to go to a home.

"But if they let her take Sarah, she may dump Sarah with someone else without our knowledge. In that case, I would rather Sarah be put in a home than be given back to Kate."

Mary also faces difficulties registering Sarah for primary school next year. No one is able to register Sarah for primary school as she does not have a legal guardian.

"We don't have all the necessary documents like her original birth certificate," Mary said. And Sarah has not attended kindergarten since her mother left her early this year.

Said Mary: "She really needs to go to school. If not, she won't be able to catch up (with her peers)." "She's very smart, but now she can't even spell 'apple'. The only word she can spell is her own name."


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