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Jul 28, 2020

Every tenth child experiences abuse in the family - new homes in Bla Hus in Aars

On 18 June 2020 the opening of new facilities in the children's house in Aars was celebrated.

The Child's Blue House in Aars helps children and adolescents from families with abuse. Now the house can help even more people.

Since the Children's Blue House Vesthimmerland opened its doors in 2016, each year they have helped between 30 and 40 children from families with alcohol or drug abuse. When a child comes into the house, there is help and therapy for the whole family, so the experiences around the abuse can be processed.

Until now, the staff of the house has worked under somewhat tight conditions, but now the new premises in Aars have been inaugurated, which means much better room for therapy and togetherness.

“It is a tremendous satisfaction for us, and for the families, that we are here today”, says S., who is head of the Children's Blue House Vesthimmerland at the opening.

The offer is part of the Blue Cross, and so far the target group has been 0-17 year olds and their families. This target group has now been extended to 0-20 years and there will be plenty of room to accommodate them all in the new premises.

“We must be able to accept more, and we will. We have hired two additional therapists this spring, so we are ready to receive people”, says S.

It is estimated that every tenth child experiences abuse in the family, and it is known that children of abusers are at greater risk of ending up in abuse, psychiatric treatment or suicide or suicide attempts. That is why it is important to get in early.

One of those who helped celebrate the dedication, and who himself has used the Child's Blue House, is P. from Tolstrup. She and her children lived with an alcoholic, and it left its mark on them all. When she heard about the Child's Blue House, she contacted them immediately and it provided the family with the help they needed to tackle and process the experiences.

“I hope someone will come and accept it, because it's such a good offer and it's a chance to move on in life”, she says.

We would like to thank you dear donors for your support. We are looking forward to go the way together! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Jul 5, 2020

Covid-19 Responses to protect Youth and their Families

Covid-19 Responses in Blue Cross Nigeria
Covid-19 Responses in Blue Cross Nigeria

The coronavirus has turned the world upside down and changed all our lives. The economy is stumbling, existential crises are taking place, health care systems and labour markets have reached their limits in many places. Now it is time to "move together" - although symbolically and more virtually than in real life.

At International Blue Cross, we too are trying to adapt as best we can to the demands of the pandemic. In our African project countries the schools will remain closed for the time being and social isolation measures have been taken. In order to be there for the young people nevertheless, we coach the local staff in how they can continue to look after the participants as efficiently as possible and implement alternative offers.

In Chad and Togo, online life skills sessions, whatsapp chats and awareness campaigns on the internet continue to implement the programmes as best they can. Telephone hotline are being set up through which the Blue Cross educators will provide targeted support to young people in dealing with the isolation and problems it brings with it. The local employees in the Republic of Congo are primarily involved through articles in the local media and produce information flyers to raise awareness of responsible behavior in this difficult time.

Alcohol and domestic violence are problems that should not be underestimated in this context. In isolation, families consume more alcohol, which often leads to social tensions, up to acts of violence and generally irresponsible behaviour regarding the rules of "social distancing". Psychological problems occur or increase in isolation. Blue Cross educators can intervene to regulate and provide care - therefore the continuation of our program is important! Particularly in poorer countries with poor health systems and social security structures, people are more dependent on our support than ever before.

Thank you for your support to vulnerable people in countries severely affected by the health crisis!

Action in Nigeria
Action in Nigeria
Sensibilization Campaign in Togo
Sensibilization Campaign in Togo
Distribute disinfectant in Chad
Distribute disinfectant in Chad
Youth Group in Chad
Youth Group in Chad
Jul 1, 2020

Drinking among elderly in times of Covid-19

“The COVID-19 pandemic poses great challenges for older adults and their families, support systems, caregivers, and medical and mental health care providers. Increased mortality among older adults following infection with the novel coronavirus, is now well established. Older people already are vulnerable to the effects of isolation and face bad consequences from social distancing, which may trigger or worsen anxiety, depression, substance use, and other psychiatric disorders. As long as social distancing guidelines remain in place, older adults in recovery from substance use disorders may find themselves cut off from support if they are unable to effectively use online treatment and self-help resources” (Satre et al. 2020).

“Supporting and protecting older people living alone in the community is everyone’s business,” said Dr Hans Henri P. Kluge, WHO Regional Director for Europe, addressing journalists at a virtual press briefing. “I am reminding governments and authorities that all communities must be supported to deliver interventions to ensure older people have what they need. All older people should be treated with respect and dignity during these times. Remember, we leave no one behind.”

Support for older people, their families and their caregivers is an essential part of the countries’ comprehensive response to the pandemic. During times of isolation and quarantine, older people need safe access to nutritious food, basic supplies, money, medicine to support their physical health, and social care. Dissemination of accurate information is critical to ensuring that older people have clear messages and resources on how to stay physically and mentally healthy during the pandemic and what to do if they should fall ill.

The Blue Cross Sininauhaliitto is and has been committed to helping vulnerable people during the Corona crisis. Food was distributed to families and elderly in Rauma, online meetings were held, self help groups were organized. The organization also became involved in politics. In May, the Blue Band Union discussed the effects of the corona crisis with the day-care actors. Many good tips and policies came up, which can be multiplied with other actors. They collected ideas, thoughts and policies that have risen in the discussion.

There were also changes for the employees. During the Corona period, the Blue Ribbon Association offers its office workers the opportunity to have a helpful work well-being morning at Skata's farm. So there was variety during the home office time. For example the new lawyer Saija was doing firewood at the Skata’s farm and at the same time getting to know Green Care.

It is important that we all continue to look after the elderly people in our community. We should contact them regularly and offer our help.

Thank you dear donors for all financial support. Together we are working against loneliness and for a life without addiction.

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Sources:

Satre, Matthew E. Hirschtritt, Michael J. Silverberg, and Stacy A. Sterling (2020): Addressing Problems With Alcohol and Other Substances Among Older Adults During the COVID-19 Pandemic, American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry.

WHO (April 2020): Supporting older people during the COVID-19 pandemic is everyone’s business.

 
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