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Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine

by Partnership for Every Child
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine
During the training: looking forward to help
During the training: looking forward to help

Dear friends,

As you know, the upcoming Tuesday is not an ordinary one. It is a Giving Tuesday, the start of the giving season. While we would be extremely grateful to receive your support on that day, prior to this yearly celebration of giving we would like to take a moment and thank you for all the wonderful stories that have already come true thanks to your generous support. These are the stories of little Katia, Makar, Sasha and Mykyta, Zhenia and Ihor and many others. A total of 100 of such stories was collected by June 2017.

But imagine if we could enhance our effort and multiply this number! Actually, this is happening already!

Thanks to your generous support we have been able to train new families and, as a result, the team of emergency fosterers has doubled in size. At the moment there are 16 families providing Emergency Fostering Services to children temporary left without parental care.

Effectively, the access to these Services was boosted. While the first 100 happy stories were collected over 8 years, during the last year half alone 36 children have already received help from the families of emergency fosterers!

In one of our previous reports we have already introduced the “seniors” of emergency fostering, so this time let us tell you a little bit about our newcomers.

Larysa and Vasyl started making their contribution to emergency fostering earlier this year. They were also mentioned in one of the previous reports. By now the couple has already had their first experience in the field: the family hosted 9-year-old Karina and 6-year-old Vika* who lost one of their parents and could not be taken care of by the other.

They do not try to refute that now, as they began their journey, Larysa and Vasyl are much busier than before. The family changed their usual life style to put their daily routine in line with the needs of the children. But Larysa and Vasyl have no regret and look forward to help more kids. They also gratefully look back at their days spent in training: “A lot of attention was drawn to the psychological aspects. - They recall. – We were taught right away how to deal with complicated situations that we had not faced as parents”. By the way, this couple was the first one to receive their recommendation and approval as as candidates in the framework of Emergency Fostering going national.

Now the girls, Karina and Vika, have a new home, which they entered without regret. “Because when the job of emergency fosterer is done in the right way, the children await to be united with their new family, this event is wishful for them,” – says Larysa, specialist of Partnership for Every Child. It is the “art” of an emergency fosterer to comfort the child in the time of deep crisis, help avoid the harmful consequences of difficult life conditions, stress and trauma and, finally, to make the transition to the new family easy on the child. Hence, the training for prospective foster families is of crucial importance, Larysa and Vasyl are now a live evidence of this.

Taking this into account, let me thank you on behalf of all the children and families who have benefitted from the Emergency Fostering Services for this opportunity to provide the necessary training to more and more families making effective social services accessible for more and more vulnerable children.

 

Warm regards,

Kateryna Snisarenko

Communications and Fundraising Officer

 

*The names of the beneficiaries are changed to protect their identity

Larysa and Vasyl: newcomers of emergency fostering
Larysa and Vasyl: newcomers of emergency fostering
Larysa with Karina and Vika: on the way to school
Larysa with Karina and Vika: on the way to school
Keep them coming
Keep them coming

Links:

Dear friends,

Hopefully you are having a cozy Autumn. In this report we would like to share with you an impact story filled with love and warmth. It is a story of two boys whose lives were changed thanks to emergency fostering and your kind support.

The two smiley gentlemen you can see on the picture are Zhenia an Ihor*. They had a very difficult childhood, but once placed in a family of emergency foster carers received a chance for a better tomorrow. Most importantly, thanks to Emergency Fostering Services kids found new parents who concurred diseases and psychological trauma and created miracles with their love.

“Our son’s childhood was filled with limitations. – says mother of the boys, Natalia, referring to Ihor, the younger brother. – I can’t even imagine what was going on in his little had. It was not until half a year ago that he kissed me for the first time ever. It was not imaginable to lift him up or pat him on his hair. The child was under the effect of deep emotional damage”.

Ihor was also diagnosed several serious health issues, including deafness. As a consequence, at the age of two the child still could not speak. But Natalia was always there for him, ready to fight heroically for the health and wellbeing of her sons.  

“Now Ihor is seven. – Natalia continues. – He already mastered a big part of vocabulary, uses word phrases and has even memorized his first poem. Now he is a cheerful, happy kid. He would not leave my hands, kisses and hugs me all the time. He finally said “I love you, mom”. He has a hobby: he really likes to handicraft with scissors and glue. Zhenia, his elder brother, is very serious and responsible. At school he gets all the best grades, takes part in international contests and wins first prizes. Our sons are very cheerful, happy and well-behaved”.

Thanks to Natalia’s persistence and faith Ihor has been timely provided with medical treatment that helped him hear better. And thanks to your kind support Ihor was also provided with a course of therapy that helped to speed the process along and allowed the boy to start his first school year together with other 7-year-olds.

“Our whole family wants for our little one to recover from all the “special conditions” and have a life of a normal kid. We have already dealt with many complications, fought many difficulties to reach success. We are constantly moving forward for our son to have a chance for a full, happy life, filled with sounds,” - Natalia told us. And Ihor together with Zhenia prepared a little surprise gift (please, see the picture below).

Natalia and her sons have found each other with your help. Thanks to your support provided to this project the kids met their future mother and father in a warm atmosphere of emergency fosterers’ home instead of a “visitors room” of an institution where they would be stressed and scared. In this atmosphere they started to get to know each other, to get closer until they realized that they are a family.

To create more happy stories like this one, it is important that emergency fosterers are well-prepared to establish relations between a child and potential future parents without imposing them and, in case these relations prove positive, to further support them without intervening. This is one of the reasons why we put huge effort into training of emergency foster carers. As the process of introducing the Services progresses, more and more families are needed. With your help we will be able to train families of future emergency fosterers across Ukraine, in order to ensure that in all regions children temporarily left without parental care can benefit from this service.  

Please, do consider to further help this cause. And thank you for all you have already done to make such wonderful stories possible!

Warm regards,

Kateryna Snisarenko
Project Communications Officer

 

*The names of the beneficiaries are changed to protect their identities 

A gift from the brothers
A gift from the brothers
Evening time: Mykyta playing, Sasha having dinner
Evening time: Mykyta playing, Sasha having dinner

Dear friends,

As you remember, last week we have reported that Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine has reached and important mark: the service helped 100 children to avoid residential institutions and stay with their biological parents or find new, loving families.

Now, let us tell you the story that marked the first 3-digit number in the history of introducing emergency fostering for Ukrainian children.

Our heroes are little Sasha* who is just 4 months away from turning 2 years old and his brother Mykyta* who is 9. They became the 99th and 100th child ever hosted by an emergency fosterer in Ukraine.

Local social workers first came to know the boys in the early spring of 2017: neighbors next door were concerned about the fighting they heard happening between the mother of the boys and her partner who is also the father of Sasha. And then, one day they saw a smoke coming out of their apartment.

Neighbors called firemen and social workers who later found out that children were home alone and, being hungry, they decided to make some toasts with a frying pan, which resulted in smoke. Fortunately, no one got hurt, but the Service for Children did decide to move the kids to the family of emergency fosterer.

As it turned out, both grandmother and mother of these children were brought up in residential institutions. What is more, the former was not against such course of upbringing both for her daughter and her grandchildren. With their own granny having such attitude, Sasha’s father being addicted to alcohol and Mykyta’s father not showing any interest in his child, little guys were under the risk of neglect and could end up in harmful residential care. Mykyta was already falling behind at school, he needed more attention from the adults.

However, despite a few mistakes in the past, the mother of Sasha and Mykyta loves them very much and so far she has never missed an opportunity to visit her kids.

She is really trying her best to become a better parent for the boys. – says Liubov Yashchuk, emergency fosterer. – she visits them every chance she gets, asks questions on how to provide better care to children. She is looking for a new job to become more independent and have higher income in the interest of her family… Together with her former partner she did not exactly become an alcoholic, but she certainly used to consume a lot of alcohol. But she has not drunk a drop of it since the boys are here.”

As of this day, the court has already taken the decision that the children may be returned to their mother who proved her ability to become a better parent.

Unfortunately, while in emergency foster care, a very sad thing about Mykyta’s health was discovered: the boy had an epileptic seizure. It was lucky it happened in the presence of the fosterer who is trained to provide aid to any child.

There is hope that Mykyta will fully recover and not have any seizures in the future. However, he is prescribed to regularly take medicine and medical examinations. Until the boy is still with emergency fosterer, there is no obstacle to this treatment. However, after he is back with his mother, it might get hard financially.

Just USD150 will ensure the whole course of treatment for Mykyta. And, as you remember, thanks to the GG Rewards Bonus Day we only need to collect USD75 to ensure that health issue will not hinder this family from taking their second chance for a better future.

Any extra money collected will be used for training of emergency foster families who provide safe and loving environment for children, like Sasha and Mykyta, whose parents undergo a temporary crisis. These families not only address the needs of the children that might have been dangerously neglected or simply fallen out of the focus of their biological families, they also construct bridges to help the little ones reunite with their parents or to connect with their new families. This work demands a lot of competency, personal dedication and constant development.  We are really proud of our fostering heroes for their high professionalism.

So, please, do consider donating to this project, in order to help us multiply this positive experience and ensure that children in all communities of Ukraine have access to such services!

On behalf of the whole team of Partnership for Every Child let me thank you once again for all you have already done to make the stories of Sasha and Mykyta as well as other 98 happy stories come true!

warm regards,

Kateryna Snisarenko

Project Communications Officer

 

*The names of the children were changed to protect their identities

Anatolii Avramenko with little Lidia*
Anatolii Avramenko with little Lidia*

Dear friends!

In this report we want to tell you a bit peculiar story: we would like to reveal a little bit of the “backstage” of emergency fostering in Ukraine.

Why is it important now?

Most recently the project Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine reached two important marks. First of all, the number of children who were supported and benefitted from emergency foster care hit 100! That is right! It is 100 happy stories that came true with your support!

Secondly, this summer new families of emergency foster carers are starting to provide services (in our report from December 29, 2016 we have briefly mentioned that 4 of them were trained this winter and now that they have also completed all the formal procedures they are ready to host children). Taking into consideration that these will be the first “newcomers” of emergency fostering after the new legislation adoption and the service taking the scope of the nation-wide experiment, it seems like the best point of time for taking a moment to mention those people who were the pioneers of the service.

The first family of emergency fosterers started to host children temporary left without parental care in 2009. It was the family of Nataliia and Ievhen Dudko whose pictures you can see on our main project page. Later on, they were joined by Tetiana and Taras Gurski (in 2011), Larysa and Sergiy Kuznetsovy, Liubov Iashchuk (in 2012), Nataliia Bazylchuk and Anatolii Avramenko (in 2013), Olena and Yurii Volkotrub, Tetiana and Ivan Hnatyky (in 2015).

These are the people who volunteered to become emergency foster carers while the service was still under testing and our team was doing our best for it to be recognized by the government on the national level. All these people believed that emergency fostering is necessary part of the puzzle in the process of eliminating the extensive and harmful system of residential institutions for Ukrainian children.

It was not easy for them at first, since their role as emergency fosterers meant not only helping children, but also letting them go. “When we hosted the first baby in our family [in the framework of providing emergency fostering services] he was 1,5 months old. When we had to give this child to his new family he was 4 month. It was incredibly hard and I cried for a whole week. But then I came up with a formula that soothes me every time: the God sent me children, but for someone this is the only opportunity to become a parent”, - Tetiana Gurska confessed in The Critical Point TV progrmme in 2013. Over the years emergency fosterers and their spouses have given multiple interviews and, thus, became ambassadors of the service that was completely new in Ukraine.

Our pioneers had to deal with a variety of cases: children with disabilities, underaged mothers, small babies, children with HIV, kids who were influenced by neglect, stress or severe psychological trauma… But in every case they knew for sure: first thing they had to provide to all of the children was love. They found strengths in the small and big victories that children were achieving under their protection. “It is a victory for us as well as for her” – said foster carer Nataliia Bazylchuk one time when Olenka* who was hosted in the Bazylchuk-Avramenko family finally got her first high grade for a math test at school. “At first they were not even able to tell what their family name was. But since they have been living here, they really changed and learnt a lot. You would really tell the difference between the children they were and the children they became. – Nataliia continued sharing the story of Olenka’s and her siblings’ success. – We are even a little bit jealous of their future parents, but it cheers us up that they are going to get a real family that will take good care of them and it makes our separation with them so much easier”.

What has been driving all of emergency foster carers is their strong motivation to help children and the value of family that you rarely find so strong in people. Myself, I was raised by a single mother. – says Larysa Kuznetsova once asked why she decided to become an emergency fosterer. – Therefore, I made a promise to myself that when I grow up I would have a big family where everyone has enough love and support”.

However they would not be able to carry on as long without your help! Your kind support taught them to never give up even in the hardest cases. Therefore, on behalf of Ukrainian pioneers of emergency fostering we would like to express to you deep gratitude for all you have done for this project.

Now the story continues… Until the end of 2017 Partnership for Every Child is defined as the one organization responsible for training of prospective emergency fosterers. The government of Ukraine has provided us a window of opportunity and we really want to use the most out of it. Please, do consider further donations to this project. And if you do so, note that July 12 is the best opportunity for one, since it is the GG Rewards Bonus Day, a day when all the donations to organizations with Superstar status (which we also have) will be doubled by GlobalGiving.org! Pencil this day in your calendar, donate to the hopes of hundreds more children in Ukraine to stay or find their loving family.

On behalf of the whole team of Partnership for Every Child I wish you a pleasant summer!

Our next reports are coming soon!

 

Warm regards,

Kateryna Snisarenko

Project Communications Officer

 

*The names of the children were changed to protect their identities.

Dudko family
Dudko family
Tetiana Gurska with her biological daughters
Tetiana Gurska with her biological daughters
4 generations of Kuznetsovy family
4 generations of Kuznetsovy family
Emergency fosterer Liubov Yashchuk with Zhenia*
Emergency fosterer Liubov Yashchuk with Zhenia*
Bazylchuk family giving an interview
Bazylchuk family giving an interview
Volkotrub family
Volkotrub family
Gnatyky family
Gnatyky family
Liubov, emergency fosterer
Liubov, emergency fosterer

Dear friends,

Little by little we are proceeding towards introduction of emergency fostering services nation-wide.

On March 16, 2017 a Decree of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine No. 148 was officially approved, which marks a new level of incorporation of emergency fostering services into Ukrainian legislation!

8 years ago I could only dream about the nation-wide development of emergency fostering in Ukraine and I am very happy to be a part of this service. I am sure that the right of a child for development can be fully satisfied in family environment only!” – says Liubov, one of emergency fosterers.

Thanks to the mentioned document many practical procedures regarding organization and delivery of emergency fostering are now state-regulated and state-guaranteed. Hence, the already-existing patronage families feel more secure, prospective fosterers are getting more motivated and general public is becoming more aware about the services.

On top of that, we are getting 4 new families of emergency fosterers this month! Two of them in communitites of Cherkasy Oblast (Zolotonosha and Smila) and two in communities of Dnipropetrovsk Oblast (Zhovti Vody and Marhanets). Over the course of winter all of them have successfully completed multi-stage process of selection and training and were approved by respective commissions.

“We are more than excited and looking forward to start making our contribution helping children stay safe and loved while they are temporary deprived of family care”, - said Larysa and Vasyl, new patronage “parents” from Zhovti Vody after receiving a positive decision from the authorized commission.

Thus, from now on children who are temporarily left without parental care in the communities of Zolotonosha, Smila, Zhovti Vody and Marhanets will no longer be sent to residential institutions. Instead, they will stay in loving and caring families, where all of their needs will be fulfilled, their problems and fears timely addressed.

As you can see, little steps may lead to big changes in the way services are provided on the community level. Similarly, GlobalGiving’s Little by Little Matching Campaign may lead to big changes in the way philanthropists worldwide perceive and support the project Vital Emergency Fostering for Children in Ukraine! Let us collectively use this opportunity to identify this project as such that is of a great significance for the wellbeing of children and, thus, is worth investing in.

What you can do to help us with getting the most of this opportunity are very simple things.

First, you can make a small donation yourself. We will highly appreciate every single donation! The mechanics of matching campaign are simple: each donation up to 50 dollars will be matched by 50%, all new recurring donations up to 200 dollars will be matched by 200%. Just do not wait until the last moment: available funds may exhaust before the end of the campaign (which is on April 7th)!

Second, you can tell your friends about our project and the campaign in any way that seems appropriate. For example, you can go to our Facebook page and share our publication about the campaign’s start fb.com/partnership4everychildUA/

Last but not least, you can help us improve our fundraising effort. Always feel free to talk to us via social networks or email (k.snisarenko@p4ec.org.ua). We are always glad to listen to you and learn how our mutual communication could be more fruitful!

On behalf of the whole team of Partnership for Every Child, thank you for all you have done and still are doing for this project!  

Warm regards,

Kateryna Snisarenko

Project Communications Officer

Newcomers of emergency fostering: Larysa and Vasyl
Newcomers of emergency fostering: Larysa and Vasyl
 

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Organization Information

Partnership for Every Child

Location: Kyiv, N/A - Ukraine
Website:
Project Leader:
Vasylyna Dybaylo
Kyiv, Kyiv Ukraine
$14,787 raised of $15,000 goal
 
311 donations
$213 to go
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