Children
 Slovakia
Project #16287

Navrat: Lets find every child in Slovakia a family

by Pontis Foundation
Game therapy
Game therapy

Dear donors,

 

Thank to your support and generous gifts we managed to stand by tenths of adoptive and foster families during the whole year 2015. We have prepared more than 30 new adoptive or foster pairs or individuals. We have provided psychological and social counselling for more than 50 parents. We have served more than 60 children with specialised therapies focused on trauma relief, strenghtening of the safe relational bond between parents and child, encouragement of confidence in the world and in the close people.

We have trained 14 parents in the Training of parental skills with the elements of filial therapy. We have used diagnostical and therapeutical advantages of Sandplay therapy with 13 children. We have trained 16 parents with their 20 children in how to use touches as a healing element of the relationship in the Touch therapy.

We have spent a lot of time dealing with the life history of the children. It is very crucial for them to be aware of their past, to accept the past experience and to take active role in the formation of own future. The identity of the child who was abandonned by biological parents and then spent time in various places (orphanages, diagnostical centres, foster families,...) is very complex and it demand a lot of time and attention to manage it and thus become able to find own place in the world and in one’s own life.

It is also thank to your contribution that we have provided with special professional services mroe than 80 families and 60 children in adotive or foster homes.

Consulting with teenagers
Consulting with teenagers
Sandplay therapy
Sandplay therapy
Egg-house therapy
Egg-house therapy
Foster families
Foster families

Thanks to the cofinancing from the Global Giving we could continue in training a group of parents from Zilina in how to use filial therapy with their children  very effective in dealing with behavioral problems, lack of child’s need od communication, which is one of typical traits of children who spent long time living in institution. They have literally to learn how to speak about their feelings, experience and needs and fiflial therapy and structured playing with these children helps them to break down their barriers and free them from their closeness.

In august we realised outdoor camp for youth from substitue families and families at risk. In the cooperation with Pygmalion project – a group of volunteers, mainly young male teachers we held free time activities during summer holidays and in September as well. These volunteers  work with children and youngsters from various age groups. They organise sport and art activities and prepare children from families with bad social condition s for school. That is very important because they help children to achieve better school results and be more successful in further education and thus help to encrease their potential to overcome social exclusion.

In the east region of Slovakia, the town of Presov, our professionals used Sandplay therapy in their sessions with children who need to open their past and heal the trauma they undergone. We used Sandplay with 2 children continually since May to September 2015 and 3rd one since September 2015. In September we invited the parents from Professional families who take care of the children from Children’s Homes in their own households to a seminar about using therapeutic stories. Now they use it to enrich their care for children placed to thier homes and they learn how to become a therapist to their child. We trained several new adoptive/foster parents to use touch as a means of therapy with the newly placed children.

We all like to play
We all like to play
Sand play box for the therapy
Sand play box for the therapy
Our 20th birthday celebration
Our 20th birthday celebration

In the Navrat Centre in Bratislava we are highly occupied with the training and preparation of future adoptive and foster parents. Currently we are preparing more than 15 couples and individuals. Our councelors are working in pairs, one of which is psychilogist or therapist and one is social worker. We are speaking with future substitute parents about several topics important for successfull substitute parenting.

 One of our main aims is to speak with them about children with specific needs or with specific background which becomes an obstacle in finfing new home – illness, behavior difficulties, Roma etnic origin. We are trying to make these future adoptive or foster parent more sensitive to these chidren and we are supporting them in their decision to accept such child and make a welcoming home for him. We are very glad to notice that this spring and summer most of parents became willing to accept a child with Roma etnicity. Mostly they have not much chance to be placed to family and most of them are raised in orphanages because not much substitute parents are prepared to take children with any problems.

With your further help we are going to support them and provide them with professional help and guidance in their first weeks and months spent together so that they can get used to each other, develop deep attachment and learn to fulfill the need of adopted ar fostered child. 

And what is new? We have celebrated our 20th birthday, attended Pohoda festival where we were discussing the system of adoptions and foster care in Slovakia. Thanks for allowing us to do so.

The book about Navrat and its 20 years
The book about Navrat and its 20 years
Our precious guest on the celebration
Our precious guest on the celebration
Navrat discussing at Pohoda festival
Navrat discussing at Pohoda festival
Foster mom
Foster mom

Since October 2014 until February 2015 we organised a pilot project of Parent Strenghtening Training for adoptive or foster parents as well as for the parents from families in crisis. Under the guidance of two trainers from Navrat a  group of mothers met each fortnight. Using creative techniques, artetherapy, narratives, discussions and writings they were working on their parenting skills, exchanging experience and working on their own parental selfconcept, which is crucial for raising children with special needs. Based on this pilot training we will develop a methodical tool for the work with a group of parents. The attendants were cooperating on the development of the training program.

 

„During a half an hour in the Parent Strenghtening Training I always released all the parenting worries, work stress and household duties. I was returning home looking forward to my dears who were waiting impatiently. My family – my husband, my biological children and foster children – soon recognised, that at that place where I went regularly, they helped me. Each time I came back in a good mood, smiling and relaxed. During the first session I wondered if it was the right thing for me, but soon I found that one can be very strenghtened by reflecting himself and looking deep inside his own mind and heart. This training helped me and my family a lot“.

Foster mother attending Parent Strenghtening Training

 

We also continued to support families who attended our Filial Play Therapy by continuous contact with parents and further guidance in their parenting. They use the benefits of the training in their daily life and discuss their experiences and questions with our therapists. For the parents raising traumatized children it is very important to have an opportunity to get constant counselling according to their actual needs. Thanks to your support we can stand by their side any time they need.

parent strenghtening :)
parent strenghtening :)
Swing
Swing

We continue with the groups of parents in the training of the parenting skills using Filial Play Therapy. Mothers are very happy to see, that their communication with children is more positive, that they understand their children and that the children now can express how they feel and what they think without aggression. So thanks to this project we can see that family life of our clients is more cooperative and the atmosphere is positive and peaceful.

 We spread the idea of the importance of touches and hugging between parents and children. In november 2014 we invited families with young children to the interactive experience family afternoon. We spoke about the Touch Therapy and we presented and excercised some easy games that make use of touch and eye-contact for developing better attachment between child and parent. Fifteen families accepted our invitation, half of them were foster or adoptive families and the other half were biological families. The afternoon was full of joy and parents expressed that they found new tool how to deepen family relationships and how to help their traumatised children to relax and cure some deep inner injuries. We could see great impact of the touch therapy and games using touching that day.

A boy
A boy
Contact therapy
Contact therapy

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Organization Information

Pontis Foundation

Location: Bratislava, Slovakia - Slovakia
Website: http:/​/​www.pontisfoundation.sk
Project Leader:
Sandra Stasselova
program coordinator for corporate volunteering and pro bono
Bratislava, Slovakia