By Abdulmohsen Al-Harthy
RIYADH — The Ministry of Labor and Social Development has announced plans to establish 200 family counseling centers in various parts of the Kingdom by 2020.
A source said the ministry is working on developing the program of family counseling by enhancing counseling centers.
“One of the ministry’s projects to enhance family counseling services is designing criteria for an eligible family counselor and counseling centers. The ministry is also looking into creating a clear procedure to grant licenses to family counselors,” said the source.
He said the ministry is working on developing training programs for people working in the field. “The ministry is also working on connecting all family counseling centers with an online database. It is also studying the potential of the private and public sectors in enhancing the project. The ministry plans to train up to 21,000 workers in the field of family counseling and social protection by 2020. Such centers will help bring down the rates of divorces, family feuds and dysfunctional families in Saudi society,” said the source.
He said the ministry is also working on a smooth process for filing complaints to ensure that everyone has the ability to lodge a complaint and receive the appropriate service from the ministry.
“The ministry is working with the Economic and Developmental Affairs Council and 18 other government directorates to achieve the objectives of the National Transformation Program of 2020. The ministry has 755 initiatives in economic, social and developmental fields. The ministry is also working on digitalizing its organizations, promoting partnerships between the private and public sectors, generating jobs and supporting the national content,” said the source.
The supervisor of the family counseling centers, Muznah Al-Jiraid, said the ministry aims to train 15,000 workers in the field of family counseling and social protection by the end of this year.
“The ministry aims to provide social services and family counseling to Saudis wherever they are. There will be a total of 158 family counseling centers by the end of the year run by the private and public sectors,” said Al-Jiraid.