The government has urged private and public companies to take an active role in supporting the well-being of the vulnerable groups in the country and not wait for foreign donors to do so.

The Deputy Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, Cde Lovemore Matuke held a familiarisation tour of orphanages and old people’s homes in Bulawayo in to ascertain some of the challenges these institutions are facing.

He called for collective effort in caring for vulnerable groups.

“The government has the responsibility of ensuring that the vulnerable are taken care of. So we urge the corporate world to also chip in to help our disadvantaged members of society,” said Cde Matuke.

Entembeni Old People’s Home Board Chairperson, Mr Martin Chimombe implored the government to renovate the infrastructure so as to accommodate more inmates.

“The roofing sheets have not been changed since 1953 when the home was built and there are leaks now that we cannot let anyone inside the house. That is why we are now reducing the number to 36. We also have the problem of mosquitoes,” he said.

Meanwhile, the government has been urged to amend and review laws regarding the upkeep of these institutions as well as the release of orphans aged over 18 from the orphanage before they acquire adequate means of survival.