Prosecutor: "Orphanages are a good thing" - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Prosecutor: "Orphanages are a good thing"

(PHOTO: FOX19 NOW Provided) (PHOTO: FOX19 NOW Provided)

"I can't help but think that sometimes orphanages are a good thing,” said Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters on Tuesday.

Deters was discussing the case of a mother who beheaded her own child. Though Deasia Watkins suffering from postpartum psychosis was ordered to stay away from her 3-month-old child, Deters says placing the child in the custody of a family member did not keep her safe.

Deters said his office sees cases like this all the time where children are placed in the care of relatives who cannot meet the needs of the child and orphanages may be a better alternative.

However, the traditional orphanage where dozens of children live in an institutional setting doesn't exist anymore in the United States. At one time years ago, St. Joseph Orphanage in Bond Hill was home for more than 400 children. They lived, learned and grew up together. But Executive Director Eric Cummins said times changed and so did St. Joseph Orphanage.

"We have been here serving kids and families for the last 185 years,” said Cummins. “In the 1970s, orphanages had to either evolve or close their doors and we chose to evolve and continue to serve kids and families.”

Orphanages across the country began to close coming under scrutiny for raising children in an institutionalized environment. Foster care became the new way. St. Joseph has approximately 90 foster homes around the Tri-State and are contracted with Jobs and Family Services.

"I think it was just to get kids out of institutional care and into a family whether it's a relative family or another family that could bring them up. We all benefit from being raised in a family,” said Cummins.

Cummins said St. Joseph serves around 1,400 children a day through education and mental health services, far more than they could as a traditional orphanage. While he believes the traditional orphanage may be beneficial to some children, Cummins said overall living in a home with a family is the ultimate goal.

"A kid growing up in a home,that is what we want everybody to do. We want them to have a home where they are loved and they are taken care of,” said Cummins.

Cummins said the biggest challenge they face is finding enough families willing to become foster parents. You can find more information on the process and how you can help children in need through St. Joseph Orphanage's website.

"I can't help but think that sometimes orphanages are a good thing,” said Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters on Tuesday.

Deters was discussing the case of a mother who beheaded her own child. Though Deasia Watkins suffering from postpartum psychosis was ordered to stay away from her 3-month-old child, Deters says placing the child in the custody of a family member did not keep her safe.

Deters said his office sees cases like this all the time where children are placed in the care of relatives who cannot meet the needs of the child and orphanages may be a better alternative.

However, the traditional orphanage where dozens of children live in an institutional setting doesn't exist anymore in the United States. At one time years ago, St. Joseph Orphanage in Bond Hill was home for more than 400 children. They lived, learned and grew up together. But Executive Director Eric Cummins said times changed and so did St. Joseph Orphanage.

"We have been here serving kids and families for the last 185 years,” said Cummins. “In the 1970s, orphanages had to either evolve or close their doors and we chose to evolve and continue to serve kids and families.”

Orphanages across the country began to close coming under scrutiny for raising children in an institutionalized environment. Foster care became the new way. St. Joseph has approximately 90 foster homes around the Tri-State and are contracted with Jobs and Family Services.

"I think it was just to get kids out of institutional care and into a family whether it's a relative family or another family that could bring them up. We all benefit from being raised in a family,” said Cummins.

Cummins said St. Joseph serves around 1,400 children a day through education and mental health services, far more than they could as a traditional orphanage. While he believes the traditional orphanage may be beneficial to some children, Cummins said overall living in a home with a family is the ultimate goal.

"A kid growing up in a home,that is what we want everybody to do. We want them to have a home where they are loved and they are taken care of,” said Cummins.

Cummins said the biggest challenge they face is finding enough families willing to become foster parents. You can find more information on the process and how you can help children in need through St. Joseph Orphanage's website.

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