The Cedar Foundation Program for independent living is designed to support youths who have reached the age of 18 and have to leave our family centers. The program includes group and individual training and consultation sessions on subjects such as budget management, strength recognition, problem solving, self-advocacy etc. It provides financial aid to cover housing expenses, utility bills and qualification courses as well as psychological support for career choice or emotional issues.
Currently there are no existing services in Bulgaria to support youths leaving residential care. After the age of 18, they are supposed to leave the family-type center and continue their life as independent citizens. But for most of them, especially those who have grown up in orphanages, changed a number of foster homes and missed years of school, the prospects aren't bright. They often lack confidence and motivation, have trust issues and are vulnerable to bad influences.
This pilot (two year) project aims to support children leaving one of the foundation centers in Kazanlak. Its program includes the provision of qualification courses, financial aid for housing and psychological support for decision making in career choice and/or emotional issues.
The long term goal of the project is to help the children recognize their strengths and develop their potential in a healthy and safe environment so that they become independent and valuable members of their communities.