Pilot Project to help Ukrainian children in need combining best practices from Ukraine & the EU
We are a civil society pioneer with special authorization from the Ukrainian government allowing us, as an NGO, to help children in need. As a non-profit organization we act as effective partner of the state, providing services where the state may be less able to do so. We are working towards proving the viability and practicality of this approach, hoping it may become a generally accepted, legal practice in Ukraine.
provide children with a new home in a family-like environment,
enable de-institutionalization and provide integrated services which best suit the child,
combine practical and theoretical work.
make a systemic contribution applying best practices from Ukraine and the EU and facilitate knowledge transfer from Ukraine and the EU by means of regular training courses and conferences.
The Center “Our Kids” for the Protection of Children was registered on April 8, 2008 with the Identification Number 39512325. It is operated in accordance with the Decree 1421 of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine from December 29, 2009 regarding the introduction of an experiment promoting the reform of the childcare system.
It was founded by the Structural Subdivision of the “German-Polish-Ukrainian Society” in Ukraine, a non-governmental organization registered on November 3, 2005.
We help children in need by offering a new approach to care: we have built two houses where children will live within family groups, thereby giving them a new home.
We have established a platform for the exchange of Ukrainian and EU expertise in childcare. We are constructing a training & conference center.
We promote and assist active civil society commitment in the field of childcare by serving as a model project (Decree 787 of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, May 30, 2007; Decree 1421 of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, December 29, 2009).
We are establishing a Public Private Partnership in the non-profit sector.
Of over 100,000 children in need only a small fraction can be placed with families (adoption, foster families etc.). The rest are left without a future. They remain in crisis families, state shelters, rehabilitation centers etc. which are often totally unsuitable.
Legal reforms are being undertaken, but over 100,000 children still live in appalling conditions.
Although the state lacks the means to deal with this crisis, there is, as of yet, no legal basis for the effective work of the NGOs willing to contribute their resources to the resolution of the problem. The state carries full responsibility for these children, whereas the potential of civil society to help children in need is left virtually untapped.
To deinstitutionalize and give children a new home in family-like conditions.
To allow children to live in a structured families, go to school, shop for food with their “social parents”, help with the cooking and cleaning at home, play with their friends and take part in sports.
Specialists (psychologists, speech therapists, teachers) support the family groups, paying special attention to the needs and traumas of the children. We organize excursions to the working world, teaching children about regular work, professions that await them and their educational options.
We work with the children’s biological relatives to establish, if possible, beneficial relationships for the child. In some cases we may even be able to stabilize the biological family as well, giving the child the chance to return to its parents.
We are working on a ground-breaking format to facilitate the exchange of expertise in taking care of children with special needs, fostering cooperation between
• Ukrainian and EU agencies
• Ukrainian agencies
• Government institutions & NGOs
Five training courses were conducted by international experts for 300 employees working in the field of childcare.
Six training sessions were held for 70 potential foster parents with the Kiev City Children´s Service sponsored by the German and Polish Embassies.
“Our Kids” is a legal model project (Decree 787 of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, May 30, 2007; Decree 1421 of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, December 29, 2009).
An NGO is put in charge of children in need.
The state institutions certify, control and support the NGOs’ work, but do not themselves organize children´s homes.In doing this they adopt an approach that works well in the USA and in the EU.
German-Polish-Ukrainian Society provides concepts & implements the project,
private sponsors provide funding,
Kiev City State Administration provides premises.
Please help us by supporting
• a family group
• the construction of houses
• training activities
Or become a volunteer, part of an international, professional team, dedicated to helping children.