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Children and their rights /Community Based Rehabilitation (CBR) strategy

Project:Children and their rights /Community Based Rehabilitation (CBR) strategy, Barlad

Location:Barlad, Vaslui county

Project category:To promote and protect the rights of children and youths with disabilities

Project background

Barlad is located in Vaslui county. Vaslui county is the second poorest place on European Union map. The economic aspect has a negative impact on social, educational sectors; this negative impact is worse for families that have children with disabilities. In Romania there are made efforts for respecting the rights of the children; there still are obstacles.

Many of children with moderate or severe disabilities do not have fully access to education, culture, and play. This situation is especially for rural or poor areas. In Vaslui county there are 2100 children with disabilities and more than half of them are children with moderate and severe disabilities.

The changing of attitudes towards children with disabilities is still a priority, still needs time. Community integration for children with disabilities is a process that involves all members. If the attitude is not favorable, then no strategy or policy will have any effect at all.

The parents are not empowered enough. Many parents that have children with disabilities feel guilty because their child has disabilities; they feel isolated and neglected by the rest of community. Some of them are in the position to fight alone, they do not know many other parents that have the same situation and which would be able to share the same

The project started in 2003. Starting with this year, our organization focused on helping families that have children with disabilities. Community Based Rehabilitation is the main base for this project. In this field we have been supported, trained and counseled by Dr Einar Helander. Also, along the years, through the projects that were sponsored by SIDA/SMC and Star of Hope International Sweden we organized training courses for: Autism, Cerebral Palsy and Down syndrome. Professionals from the field of child protection attended the courses.

For the time being, our activity is being developed in a day center; the location is offered for free by County Direction for Child Protection Vaslui. The daily schedule is from Monday to Friday, 8.00 to 16.00.

Total number of beneficiaries of the project:

Direct beneficiaries:

  • 20 children with disabilities
  • 30 biological and foster parents

Indirect beneficiaries: 20 beneficiaries (educators, children and community members)

Employees working directly within the project (category, extent, number):

2 part time employees (social worker, special pedagogue)
1 rehabilitation pedagogue

Management: 1 manager (part time), 1 programs director (part time)

Target group of the project

Target group: children/teenagers with disabilities (Autism, Down syndrome, Cerebral palsy, etc.) and their families, especially from Barlad town.

Overall aim

To promote and protect the children with disabilities rights

Specific aims

  • To develop the capacities of children/teenagers with disabilities
  • To empower the parents that have children with disabilities
  • To raise awareness regarding the rights of children with disabilities

Objectives

  • To organize “Open doors” event
  • To continue the relations with schools, kindergartens from Barlad in order to facilitate the school integration for children with disabilities
  • To organize the Alpha corse
  • To organize training courses for parents and staff regarding communication, developing group of parents; the lector is Eivor Kraft from Sweden.
  • To evaluate the risk of child separation from his/her family; the SOH Ro team assesses the factors for child separation from his/her parents; the team also assesses the child maltreatment situation and contacts the local authority for child protection and together they take the best interest child solution.
  • To collaborate with local authority for child protection Vaslui: the SOHRo team periodically communicates with the representatives from local authority in order to follow up the children situation, to prevent the child abuse/maltreatment.
  • To organize groups activities for children/teenagers; the children will develop their abilities for independent life, their social abilities, and communication and relationship abilities.
  • To offer individual rehabilitation program. After the child is registered, he is scheduled for an initial evaluation session: filling up the social inquiries forms, client evaluation. The evaluation is performed by the local pedagogue and is discussed with the parents of the child. Based on initial evaluation, we elaborate the initial individual rehabilitation plan. The children are beneficiaries of the individual rehabilitation programs at SOH Ro center or at home 1 or 2 times per week. The parent is valued as an important resource for the rehabilitation and integration of the child.
  • To organize socialization activities: the children are involved in different activities that are organized in the park, gardens or at the center. We also organized birthday parties, June the 1st, Mother’s day, Christmas and short trips. These activities are performed in collaboration with the kindergartens where the children from our project are integrated.
  • To organize group support for foster mothers (every 2 months) and for biological mothers (every 2 months)
  • To provide support for parents to overcome the crisis situations: the parents are helped to overcome the crisis situations through counseling, meeting with other parents. The counseling is performed according to an intervention plan and is implemented by a psychologist/social worker. The counseling sessions can be in group or individual.
  • To advise the parents those have children with disabilities: the parents are trained how to continue at home the rehabilitation program for their child. The parents attend training courses, experience exchange. Every new parent in Star of Hope program receives informative material, information regarding the child disabilities, child’s potential for rehabilitation.
  • To organize monthly meetings with parents associations. Together they plan activity, they exchange information.
  • To support the parents association that was set up with Star of Hope help to develop: the parents association would be supported for obtaining the accreditation papers from local authorities.
  • To organize in March- international day of down syndrome: exhibition with things made by the children and pictures showing the center activities
  • To continue in 2015 the TV shows ( at local TV station EST 1) about different disabilities, methods of recuperation; this activities will contribute to raising awareness regarding children rights, but also will inform parents, persons with disabilities about disabilities, methods to work
  • Articles in mass media

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