The Child in the Family programme is aimed at establishing the professional foster family as an institution in Russia. We focus on: the professional development of specialists in family placement; finding, developing and testing new models of family placement; creating favourable public opinion; and establishing the necessary legal framework to develop the professional foster family as an institution.
The professional foster family is a family which: has positive, practical experience of bringing up foster children; is open to working with specialists; is active within the fostering community; and is specially trained, whilst constantly upgrading its skills.
· Employees of public and non-governmental institutions who are suitably competent and trained to work with foster children and foster families: specialists from child protection services and social services, psychologists, employees of foster homes and children’s educational institutions, and specialists from the support services;
· Foster parents and prospective foster parents living in the areas where the programme is being implemented.
· Training and raising awareness. We provide assistance with: training beneficiaries; upgrading their qualifications; sharing experience; and developing the community of professionals involved in family placement and prevention of child abandonment. Since July 2012, we have been carrying out preliminary work towards establishing regional resource centres, which will act as a forum for gathering and analysing best practice, as well as for the networking and training of foster parents and specialists in family placement.
· Influencing public opinion. The Foundation regularly holds conferences and round tables on issues of orphanhood in Russia, and takes part in developing regional programmes and strategies for children.
· Competitive and non-competitive funding of projects.