January - February 2017
 
IN A FEW WORDS
Welcome to this Joint Special Issue of the BCN Newsletter!

In this special issue we highlight key achievements and gaps during the transition from institutional to family- and community-based care for children in Europe. It is a joint collaboration with the Opening Doors for Europe's Children campaign - a pan-European campaign advocating for strengthening families and ending institutional care. Through partnership between five international organisations: Eurochild, Hope and Homes for Children, SOS Children's Villages International, International Foster Care Organisation (IFCO), the European branch of the International Federation of Educative Communities (FICE Europe) and civil society organisations in 15 European countries, the campaign aims to support national efforts to develop child protection systems that strengthen families and ensure high-quality family- and community-based alternative care for children by leveraging EU funding and policy, and building capacity in civil society.
 
We look at the evidence on deinstitutionalisation (DI) and status of care reforms across Europe in 2016 - from EU neighbourhood and pre-accession countries to EU member states, most of which are currently being challenged by the migration and refugee crisis. This issue celebrates key achievements and highlights challenges towards implementing care reforms across Europe. It focuses on policies that regulate deinstitutionalisation and prevention of child abandonment; engagement of civil society; existing know-hows; access to community-based services, and use of EU funds.
 
To help national governments transform the national child protection systems based on institutional care and convert changes towards the development of integrated child-centred protection systems that strengthen families and prevent unnecessary separation of children, the right decisions and a concerted political will are needed. Much can be learned through the experience developed at national level if it can be harnessed and shared across the European region as well as globally.
 
Florence Martin, Director, Better Care Network
Jana Hainsworth, Secretary General, Eurochild

Hundreds of thousands of children across Europe are growing up in institutional care. The consequences are devastating for children, families and society.  Opening Doors for Europe's Children  - a pan-European campaign advocating for strengthening families and ending institutional care - has created a new generation of country fact sheets   that document the evidence on deinstitutionalisation (DI) and the status of implementing care reforms during the transition from institutional to family- and community-based care in  15 European countries.  The latest country snapshots look at recent, comparable and country-specific information on characteristics and the functioning of the child protection and care systems across EU member states, pre-accession countries and countries within the EU neighbourhood. Continued...

Deinstitutionalization Across Europe and Beyond

The Focus Section brings together research and other documentation published over the past year or two on a particular theme or region. Its aim is to draw attention to the growing body of knowledge developing on the issue and help busy practitioners keep abreast of learning and changes.

Across Europe

Advocating for Social Services for the Benefit of All Children and Their Families
This report from Opening Doors discusses the Opening Doors II pan-European campaign launched in Chisinau, Moldova.

The Illusion of Protection
Halyna Postoliuk, Country Director of Hope and Homes for Children in Ukraine, shares the story of Maxim, an adolescent who has spent the majority of his life in institutional care.

Ending institutionalisation: An assessment of the outcomes for children and young people in Bulgaria who moved from institutions to the community
This report from Lumos reveals that children who transition from institutional care into small group homes in Bulgaria have a greater quality of life.

This study reviewed data in Romania and Lithuania over extended periods to determine if there was a correlation between international adoption and institutional care. 

Beyond Europe

A Mandate to End Placement of Children in Institutions and Orphanages: The Duty of Governments and Donors to Prevent Segregation and Torture This article by Eric Rosenthal from Disability Rights International describes how the protection against torture and ill-treatment can and must be enforced to protect children subject to detention in institutions. 

Alternative Child Care and Deinstitutionalisation: A Case Study of Indonesia
Including research from MoSA and Save the Children, this report from SOS Children's Villages provides a case study of alternative care in Indonesia and identifies key areas of change for child care reform.

Alternative Child Care and Deinstitutionalisation in Asia: Findings of a desk review
While addressing the several reasons children are placed in care, this desk review from SOS Children's Villages takes an in-depth look at efforts towards deinstitutionalisation in Asia.

In May, 2016, 77 diverse children's care stakeholders from government ministries, UN agencies, civil society, donors, academia and the media came together in Lusaka over three days to take part in a national consultation to accelerate the national child care reform process in Zambia. This report documents the discussions and key recommendations adopted at the meeting.

Combatting dependency and promoting child protection in Rwanda
External aid, along with the stress of protracted displacement can force changes in family structures and caregiving practices, thus threatening the family structure.  In the most extreme cases, researchers found that parents may leave the family or a child, rationalising that the children would be better off without the parent or on their own.

No Child Should Grow Up Like This: Identifying long term outcomes of Forgotten Australians, Child Migrants and Stolen Generations
Considered an invaluable contribution to Australia's efforts to account for past oversights in care, this report documents experiences of Australia's care leavers.

NEW RESEARCH AND UPDATES
Understanding the Situation

Ethiopia Child Protection Factsheet
In this Ethiopia Child Protection Fact Sheet, UNHCR provides the main child protection highlights, issues, and trends for 2014 to 2016, in particular relating to the large influx of unaccompanied and separated children entering Ethiopia.  

State of the Nation's Foster Care 2016: What foster carers think and feel about fostering
Key findings on the state of the UK's foster care system note that while most foster carers desire to continue fostering children, only 55% would recommend fostering to others.

After the Fire: Survivors of Hogar Seguro Virgen de la Asuncion at risk - Findings and Recommendations for Action 
Disability Rights International visited survivors of Hogar Seguro Virgen de la Asunción in  Guatemala and found that they face immediate dangers that include detention in other institutions, segregation, and abuse.

Knowledge and attitudes towards disability in Moldova: A qualitative study of young people's views
This study, which consisted of three semi-structured focus group interviews with schoolchildren, found that people with disabilities in Moldova experienced negative cultural attitudes due to outdated perceptions of disability.

Innocenti Research Brief - Parenting Interventions: How well do they transport from one country to another?
This brief summarizes findings from two global, systematic reviews on the effectiveness of parenting interventions. Parenting interventions appear to be at least as effective, when transported to countries that are different culturally and in their service provision, from those developed for a specific national or cultural context. 


Continuity of care in youth services: A systematic review
Aiming to gain a better understanding of youth perceptions of continuity of service, this article examines youth care interventions pertaining to continuity of care.  

What does the future hold for Ukraine's children in care?
Ukraine still operates on a Soviet-era care model.  This article from ODR discusses deinstitutionalisation challenges facing the government and supporting care organisations.

The prevention of violence in childhood through parenting programmes: a global review
This global review examines past systematic reviews to determine whether parenting interventions help prevent child maltreatment.  

The Multi-Country Study on the Drivers of Violence Affecting Children: A Cross-Country Snapshot of Findings
By examining Italy, Peru, Viet Nam, and Zimbabwe through a multi-level socio-ecological framework, this study found that multiple drivers were interconnected in determining a child's risk of violence.
Policies and Standards
Out-of-home placement and regional variations in poverty and health and social services spending: A multilevel analysis
This study from Quebec, Canada found that absolute poverty had an effect on children's risk of out-of-home placement.

Towards the Right Care for Children: Orientations for reforming alternative care systems - Africa, Asia, Latin America
This synthesis report contains findings from a study that conducted research in six South and Central American, Asian and African countries for the purpose of gaining understanding of the nature, extent, and scope of institutionalization and the feasibility of deinstitutionlisation.
Learning from Practice
Analyzing chronological data, this book discusses the politics and practice of intercountry adoption starting with the state of international adoption to in the 1950s and continuing to present-day adoption practice and protections.

This abstract relays the findings of a survey on informal carers' views and opinions under the current conditions of social support in the Czech Republic
. The survey was based on theoretical concepts of caring societies, deinstitutionalization, refamilization, and integrated community care and aimed to shed light on caring families' experiences and ne eds in the Czech Republic. 

Since the shut down of its disabled children's institutions, Bulgaria has faced new challenges in providing care to its most vulnerable population.
COUNTRY CARE REVIEWS
In this issue, we highlight the care-related Concluding Observations adopted by the Committee on the Rights of the Child at its 74th Session held in February 2017, with a particular focus on sections addressing children's care.
 
Click below to read the Country Care Reviews for the following countries: 

VIDEO

RISE Webinar Series on Monitoring and Evaluation of Reintegration Programmes
This video provides a brief context of child participation and participatory methods.

Child and Youth Participation in Monitoring and Evaluation of Reintegration
Child and Youth Participation in Monitoring and Evaluation of Reintegration

Early Intervention - Erken Mudaxile
Early intervention is the preferred method for protecting the well-being of children.

The importance of early intervention

Animation: Alternatives to Detention for Children
This short animation tells the story of a young boy and girl forced to flee their homes, and how detention can be avoided in order to complete their migration status.

Animation: Alternatives to Detention for Children
Animation: Alternatives to Detention for Children


IN THE MEDIA

Guatemala: As fire's death toll rises, so does desire for orphan care reform in Guatemala
13 Mar 2017 - Mission News Network

Guatemala: Orphanage tragedy exposes corruption
11 Mar 2017 - Athena Talks

Global: Orphanage 'recruited kids to get donations'
10 Mar 2017 - CNN

UK: Outrage in Britain as unaccompanied migrant children are abandoned
10 Mar 2017 - America Magazine

Sweden: Sweden begins new asylum seeker age assessment tests
7 Mar 2017 - TT/The Local

U.S.-Mexico; DHS may separate mothers from kids who cross border illegally
7 Mar 2017 - The Washington Post

Solomon Islands: Solomon Islands tightens its child adoption laws
6 Mar 2017 - RNZ

Iran: More Abandoned Children Finding Families
6 Mar 2017 - Financial Tribune 

Global: The Intersection Between the Worldwide Refugee Crisis and Human Trafficking: How Social Workers Can Have An Impact
1 Mar 2017 - Social Worker Helper

UK-Australia: Man sent as child from UK to Australia tells abuse inquiry: name the villains
27 Feb 2017 - The Guardian

India: India Adoption Centre Heads Arrested Over Trafficking
21 Feb 2017 - Voice of Asia

Jamaica: Importance of Foster Care Being Highlighted
16 Feb 2017 - Jamaica Information Service

"I would tell any girls back home, don't come to Europe": Becky, 16
12 Feb 2017 - The Times

India: Why This Collaborative Wants Philanthropy to Stop Funding Orphanages
9 Feb 2017 - Inside Philanthropy

Honduras: I worked in orphanages for years. I now know there's no substitute for family
8 Feb 2017 - The Guardian

Foster homes sought for child refugees
8 February 2017 - Uutiset

Kenya: Historic ruling puts State, adoption groups on the spot
29 Jan 2017 Daily Nation

Ghana: Caring for Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC) in Ghana; A Critical Review
28 Jan 2017 Ghana Star

U.S.-Mexico-Guatemala: Why are so many pregnant and parenting teens arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border?
27 Jan 2017 Slate

Greece: EU and UNICEF Join Forces to Help and Protect Refugee Children in Greece
26 Jan 2017 Greek Reporter

Netherlands: Dutch government mulls ban on international child adoption amid trafficking fears
23 Jan 2017 - Yahoo News

Scotland: More than 5,700 children in Scotland living in temporary accommodation
18 Jan 2017 - Welfare Weekly

Russia: Russian lawmaker says Moscow may lift adoption ban
18 Jan 2017 - USA TODAY

England: Children unnecessarily removed from parents, report claims
18 Jan 2017 - TheGuardian

U.S.: After 20 Years, Young Man Leaves Foster Care On His Own Terms
11 Jan 2017 - NPR

Iceland: 17-Year-Old Asylum Seeker Imprisoned, Despite Int'l Law And Child Protective Services
11 Jan 2017 - The Reykjavik Grapevine

EVENTS


Webinar: World Social Work Day - Advocacy Tools to Raise the Profile of Social Workers Locally and Globally
16 Mar 2017 - Webinar

Fortaleciendo los habilidades para el trabajo con familias
23 Mar 2017 - Hotel Century, Liverpool 152, Col. Juárez, Del. Cuauhtémoc, Mexico
 
Caring for vulnerable children - Free Online Course
27 March 2017 - Webinar

6-8 April 2017 - Austin, Texas, US

Getting Care Right for All Children: Implementing the UN Guidelines for the Alternative Care of Children
15 May 2017 - Free Online course

15 May 2017 - Free Online Course

15 May 2017 - Free Online Course

Why We Care About Care: An Online Moderated Course on Care Economy
22 May 2017 - UN Women Training Centre 

Annual Global Social Service Workforce Alliance Symposium
24 May 2017 - Washington DC

International Society for Child Indicators (ISCI) 6th Conference: Children in a World of Opportunities: Innovations in Research, Policy and Practice
28-30 June 2017 - Montreal, Canada

29-30 June 2017 - Singapore

2017 PSS Forum: Equity, Equality for all Girls, Boys and Youth
4-6 Sep 2017 - Arusha, Tanzania
JOB POSTINGS, CONSULTANCY OPPORTUNITIES & CALLS FOR NOMINATIONS
Save the Children Seeks Senior Coordinator, Child Protection
Deadline 17 Mar 2017 - Geneva, Switzerland

World Vision International Searching for Child Protection Manager (Laos)
Deadline 18 Mar 2017 - Laos

UNHCR-RefugePoint Seeks Child Protection Expert
Africa

ChildFund International in Search of a Child Protection and Advocacy Advisor
Panama 

Catholic Relief Services Seeks Senior Technical Advisor-Orphan and Vulnerable Children
Baltimore, Maryland, USA