About the webinar:
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN ABANDONED CHILDREN BECOME ADULTS?
When they become 18 (or when they graduate from secondary school), young people raised in alternative care have to take their lives in their own hands. The state has no legal obligation to continue to support them in any way. The institutional care system in Bulgaria has an insufficient capacity to prepare them for this step. Thus they end up unable to:
- look for a job and adapt to working environment;
- find accommodation;
- manage a household;
- manage their finances;
- build positive relationships;
This makes these young people very vulnerable. Girls as well as a great number of boys are easily brought to prostitution, international human trafficking networks, sex trade, etc. Begging, crime and other abusive behaviors become the only way to survive for many, destroying the individual and our society.
"The House of Opportunity" Programm is a network of family-type houses for young people leaving institutions for children deprived of parental care. The programme has been developing since 2007 and is based on advanced practices from Western Europe adapted to the environment and needs of the young people in Bulgaria.
The House of Opportunity breaks the cycle of abandonment by helping young people brought up in institutional care to gain skills for independent living in order to become dignified and contributing members of our society.
Every house in the programme offers young people 2 years of residential care and support in:
- Finding and keeping a suitable job;
- Managing of personal finances;
- Personal health;
- Development of social skills and skills for building positive and sustainable relationships;
- Adaptation to independent living;
- Ongoing support after leaving the programme;
With the help of committed volunteers from the local communities House of Opportunity offers the young people a family-like environment. Our teams use various methods of work with the residents such as mentoring, specialized educational programmes, team work and individual development work, informal teaching and more.
FSCI’s fundamental method of work is build a network of partnerships with key institutions, businesses, volunteers and other stakeholders, aiming to bring all resources available together and to maximize the outcomes on both the local and national level.
INCREASING SOCIAL CHANGE AND INCLUSION ACROSS THE BALKANS AND EASTERN EUROPE
The dangers that alternative care leavers face when they leave institutions at eighteen and the huge challenges vulnerable young people face when finding and keeping a job are not just limited to Bulgaria. These shared problems undermine communities right across the Balkans and Eastern Europe.
FSCI has developed well designed, effective program that address these problems and we are very excited to be in the position to offer them to other like-minded organizations throughout the region. For this purpose, we are partnering with organizations from a number of different countries /including Serbia, Croatia and Albania/ who Provide the service locally.
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