Currently, there is no unified standard of preparation and selection of foster parenting applicants in the Russian Federation. This situation leads to many difficulties for all parties involved: local authorities, tutorship and guardianship specialists, psychological and social support services, applicants to foster parenting and approved foster parents (guardians, adoptive parents and trustee), and, of course, directly affects interests of children who need foster families and who are being raised in foster families. Absence of the unified criteria of the estimation of foster parents activities based on scientifically proved methods of research leads to the equal possibility of an abuse of power from the state of authorities as well as from the legal representatives of orphans. In addition, all of the formed stereotypes interfere with trust building among foster parents and support organisations, which leads to critical situations in foster families and, in extreme cases, brings out violence towards the children raised in such families.
In many countries, there is a lot of accumulative experiences of preparation and support of foster families, of different effective practices and methods. At present, there is a clear need to find out, gather and analyse the experience of different countries in this sphere. In 2018-2019 Russian Ministry of Education is proposing changes to the «Amendments to the child rights protection acts of the Russian Federation» federal act.
Thus, it is required to discuss all the problems and questions amassed over time, to conduct successful cooperation among the authorities, foster families’ preparation and protection services, foster parents and noncommercial organisations. The conference’s programme is compiled in a way to expand upon all the important problems, to share experience and to point out the areas in need of further examination. Theses, including recommendations toward the betterment of the family setting’s system, shall become the result of the conference.
A definition of the unified standard, based on the theses of the conference and designed in accordance with the analysis of the activities of leading Russian and foreign organisations, having long experience of foster families’ support, can increase the effectiveness of the preparation and support services and, most importantly, decrease the number of cases of neglect towards children needs.
- «Children are waiting», the charity foundation, helping to orphans