Foster care experts convene in Campinas
Family for Every Child was delighted to be able to support and participate in Brazil’s 3rd International Colloquium on Foster Care, 15-17 December, in Campinas, Sao Paulo.
The event was organised by Family member Associação Brasileira Terra dos Homens (ABTH) and attended by 500 participants, from a wide range of Brazilian NGOs, local authorities and government departments, plus government and NGO representatives from all corners of Latin America and the Caribbean.
In addition, Family members ChilDLinK, UNM, and P4EC Russia attended, presented and discussed examples of their work on foster care and other forms of family-based care.
There were presentations from a wide range of experts, academics, policy makers, trainers and foster carers as well as international organisations. This diverse range of presenters and participants stimulated a great deal of learning, discussion and planning for future development and joint initiatives in the area of foster care, including support to enable children to remain in or return to their own families whenever possible.
Examples of innovation included:
foster care projects with a strong emphasis on support for the family of origin;
the prevention of long term separation;
the involvement of young people and foster carers through support groups and associations;
a range of specialist types of foster care, including short-break respite care (Russia), emergency foster care (Ethiopia) and foster care for children who face death threats from criminal gangs (Brazil).
It’s been a great conference… From other countries, there was a very interesting range of experience, showing we’re all at different stages of development, but united by our focus on family-based care and prevention of the separation of the child from their family.” Lyudmila Sorokina, Director of Family member, Partnership for Every Child Russia
“There was an emphasis on the role of foster care in prevention. Various models I’ve learned about here we don’t have in Russia. The next step is thinking about developing certain elements in Russia since the needs of children and families in difficult situations is practically the same, and the reasons they are in those situations are the same.
“A lot depends on the ability of a country to fund services. But from Moldova’s example we have learnt that the absence of funding can mobilise the system to be more responsive and focused on the needs of children.”