Local NGOs join Opening Doors campaign in Ukraine

Opening Doors National Coordinator in Ukraine, Hope and Homes for Children Ukraine, has joined forces with NGOs to achieve deinstitutionalisation (DI) in the country. A total of 28 civil society organisations representing 22 regions of Ukraine have now committed to advocating in their regions to close institutions for children and create quality alternatives for children and their families.

The experience of our partners in Ukraine shows that local authorities play a key role in the effective implementation of DI. Successful DI projects in the country can be traced back to effective cooperation between CSOs, local administrations and local child protection agencies. As Ukraine looks set to move to a more decentralised political system with local administrations taking on new responsibilities including child protection and development of social services, this role looks set to become ever more important.

Marina Hushanska, SOS Children’s Villages coordinator in Luhansk Oblast region, commented, “In today’s society, many people already support the transition from institutional to family-based care, but the economic situation and lack of knowledge of existing alternatives have not allowed the start of a reform yet. We need to work to achieve a national reform by creating a clear plan of action, also by taking into account examples of successful practices in the communities”.