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Social workers trained on foster care to ensure that every child lives in a family

Bar, Montenegro, 10 November 2012 – More than 40 professionals from all ten centres for social work in Montenegro completed trainings on various aspects of foster care in order to ensure that every child lives in a family.

Social workers during the workshop in Bar

The main topics of the trainings were related to applying standards in foster care, as well as assessing prospective foster families and assessing children’s needs. The trainings were held between July and November 2012.

 “On this seminar we have upgraded our techniques and methods of work with potential foster families. We have also learned the techniques and approach for evaluating the suitability of foster parents for satisfying the needs of a child,” said a social worker from the Social Welfare Centre in Rožaje, Faruk Dacić.

Foster families secure a safe and stimulating environment for children’s development by providing them with adequate care, including health and education, in order to prepare the child for independent living. Also, foster families provide support to children in establishing and maintaining a relationship with the biological families, and preserving their personal and family identity.

 “I am pleased to say that the professionals advanced a lot and adopted new knowledge. I believe that they are the key pillar for the reform and implementation of fostering practice in Montenegro. The new knowledge is pointed toward improving their skills to support foster families. Also, today we are working with them on adopting certain knowledge and skills for evaluating foster families and identifying quality foster families who can adequately meet the needs of children without parent care,“ said UNICEF’s consultant, Dobrila Grujić.

Deprivation of family care is devastating for all children, most profoundly in early childhood-when bonding, love, nurturing and stimulation are essential for all aspects of childhood emotional and cognitive development.

UNICEF Consultant Dobrila Gruji
ć with social workers during the workshop in Bar

 “Every child has the right to a family life, and the child welfare reform process currently underway in Montenegro seeks to ensure this principle by strengthening social work services to keep families together where possible, and where not, to provide extended foster care services to ensure that children can be cared for in a family environment, rather than an institution,” UNICEF Montenegro Representative Benjamin Perks concluded.

Trainings of social welfare professionals in Montenegro follow the adoption of the Fostering Strategy for Montenegro (2012–2016) earlier this year. The trainings are part of the “Social Welfare and Child Care System Reform: Enhancing Social Inclusion” project implemented by the Government of Montenegro with technical assistance of UNICEF and UNDP and with financial support from the European Union in the amount of 3 million euros.

The goal of this project is to support the social and child welfare reform process in Montenegro to ensure that every child’s right to live in a family is fulfilled.



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