The Government of Romania has restated its commitment to continuing the process of Deinstitutionalisation during a meeting with the European Commission and leading civil society organisations in Bucharest.
The meeting was attended by Ms Mariana Câmpeanu, Romania’s Minister of Labour, Family, Social Protection and the Elderly, together with representatives from the Ministry of European Funds, the Secretary of State, the Ministry of Regional Development and Public Administration as well as representatives from The European Expert Group on the Transition from Institutional to Community-Based Care (EEG) and the Opening Doors National Coordinator, Hope and Homes for Children Romania.
Addressing the delegates, Romania’s Minister of Labour, Family, Social Protection and the Elderly, Ms Mariana Câmpeanu, stated “Children belong in families, not institutions, no matter how well equipped they might look.”
Romania has gone through a significant transformation of its child protection system over the last 15 years. In 2000 there were 100,000 children in care, predominantly in large-scale institutions. At the end of 2012, there were 63,447 children officially in state care, of which approximately 9,000 are in institutional care.
The Government has committed to finalising the transition from institutional to family-based care for children by building services to provide support for families and prevent children becoming separated, and providing family-base alternatives for children who need them.
The meeting was also attended by representatives of the European Commission – DG Regio and DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion. It was commonly agreed that investing in families and community-based services not only leads to better outcomes for children and families, but it also more cost-effective in the long-term.