Forming and developing a network of professional foster parents (1998-2001)
This is a pilot program launched in partnership with 'Hope Cottage' from Dallas, Texas, which provided training classes (3 modules) and with the Offices for Children's Protection from the counties of Brasov, Buzau, Covasna, Harghita, Ilfov, Prahova. The attendees were social workers and psychologists.
Generating the first wave of experts in the fields of social work and protection of children's rights;
Creating a primary network of professional foster parents;
Creating jobs for unemployed persons, by carefully selecting, and fully priming them to become Professional Foster Parents;
Significant reduction in the number of institutionalized children (hundreds of children left their orphanages and have been taken by professional foster families). Galerie foto
"A home for every child" (1998-2011)
a national interest program that targeted the over 80 thousand abandoned children in orphanages and hospitals at the time.
Every child's constitutional right to a family was guaranteed by binding Romanian legislation, Bill No. 87/1998, in accordance with international agreements such as the United Nations Convention and the Hague Convention, which Romania had previously adhered to.
The Catharsis Association received its yearly accreditations from local and central authorities in order to identify the right persons and/or families wishing to adopt one or more children, fully abiding by binding legislation. Our adoption program was developed and implemented in partnership with the Committee for the Protection of Children's Rights in the respective counties where the eligible children resided, thus complying with the Repartition directives from the Romanian Committee for Adoptions. Tens of children were given the chance to leave their orphanages and be placed with adoptive families, in order to have their destinies changed forever.
Our 2-year long monitoring operations of the children adopted between 1998-2008 by families from Brasov, Bucharest, Braila, Botosani, Covasna, Constanta, Dambovita, and between 1998-2001 by families from abroad (Canada, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Greece, US) confirm the pivotal role of adoption in protecting abandoned children.
Between 1998 – 2011, we oversaw the international adoptions of only those children who failed to find an adoptive family through the national repartition process. They were turned down because of their ethnicity (Rroma), age (over 6 years old) or health conditions (suffering from such disease as Hepatitis B, C, tuberculosis, epilepsy, autism).
International adoption was based on the principle of "equality and nondiscrimination" and offered these children the unique chance to have parents, a family, a happy childhood and safety. Many of these children returned to Romania to see the orphanages they had left, they searched for their natural families, friends, and close acquaintances. During their visits they understood the reasons for their abandonment and eventual adoption. International adoptions were suspended in October 2001 and blocked in february 2004.
On December 6, 1998, the Catharsis Association organized the first ceremony for children adopted by families from Brasov and Covasna. The event had a tremendous impact on the community. After it we noted an increase in the number of families and individuals who wanted to adopt a child.
The post-adoption reports, accompanied by pictures of the adopted children, are a testament to the fact that these children now live happily, and enjoy love and parental protection, special care and help with medical needs, are well adjusted socially, and understand the reasons behind their abandonment.
During the ceremonies for the internationally adopted children, they have the opportunity to meet with Romanian authorities (social workers, psychologists, lawyers, physicians, judges, journalists, presidents of various committees and diplomats) and succeed in maintaining ties to their native country.
The national adoption program is on-going.