After helping to care for triplets since their birth, an East Canje, Berbice woman is now hopeful of adopting them following the recent death of their mother.
Asha Persaud, of Lot 1162 New Area Canefield Settlement, East Canje Berbice, is presently already responsible for the care of the three girls, who were born in March, 2008.
Persaud, who is a mother of two, says she has “deep feelings” for the girls and treats them like her own children. “I had my two kids and the three, me and my husband use to take care of them all together,” she notes.
Their mother, Hameeda Bacchus, who was her neighbour, succumbed to an illness in April. Bacchus was also the mother of three other children, who are in the care of an aunt.
Persaud told Stabroek News that after the triplets were born, Bacchus returned home with three babies and no assistance. It was then that Persaud, without being asked, offered to help. She said she began to care for the children since they were babies. She explained that at night she would take the children to her house and care for them so as to give Bacchus time to rest and heal from the delivery. “Imagine when you give birth to one child how you does feel and she did give birth to three,” she explained.
According to Persaud, as she cared for the children, her love for them began to grow and as time passed it became normal for them to become part of her daily life.
She recalled that she would head to work and Bacchus would promise her that she would send them to their nursery school. But Persaud later found out that this was not the case as the children would be absent most days. She said when she learnt of this, she stepped in and ensured that the children attended school regularly.
Persaud added that a few years ago she went to England to visit her daughter and the children were left in the care of their mother and once again they stopped attending school regularly. Upon her return, Persaud said, she went to the school and learned that the children were not doing their best, “Me ask the teacher to teach them back what they miss and don’t know and is then them start doing better,” she noted.
With the father of the children in and out of their lives since their birth, Persaud said she and her husband are hoping to start the process of officially adopting the children. “Me can look them now and when they turn 16 and so they can want walk out and me can’t tell them anything but if I adopt them me can say something,” she explained.
The children have recently been featured in the media after the passing of their mother and while many may say this is a good way of telling their story, it also came with negatives. Persaud disclosed that after the story hit social media, children began to tease the triplets at school and as a result they do not want to attend school regularly. However, she said she is trying her best to ensure that they do attend school and block out the negativity.
Furthermore, Persaud has also come in for criticism from persons about her reason for going public. But she emphasised that she was contacted and that she had never contacted anyone for assistance as she has always taken care of the children through her own means.
The three girls are presently awaiting their National Grade Six Assessment results. Persaud is hoping that they gain entry to a secondary school and stressed that she will continue to support them financially and care for them as she has been doing for the last eleven years. She added that with the support of her husband and her own children, she will try her best.
However, the woman noted that she would be willing to accept any sort of help from the government in relation to their schooling, as sending three children to high school can be an expensive task.