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The essence of the project is to give a more complete and comprehensive representation of children to potential adoptive parents. "Mediapassport" is a database of profiles of orphans. Each profile contains high-quality photos and video stories about a particular child. In such a way, parents can get pre-acquainted with a child.
According to Albert Pavlov, the director of the "Happy Child" Foundation, such acquaintance is many times more effective than just reading bare profile. The project has a number of significant advantages. First of all, it will allow parents who have already set up their mind on adoption, to decide on the child. Secondly, it will urge those who are just thinking about adoption or guardianship on doing it. Finally and most importantly, such presentation will motivate young people who are only going to create a family to the possible adoption in the future.
The Mediapassport project was launched by "Rainbow Shine" charitable organization in Dnepropetrovsk in 2011. The profiles of 292 orphans were prepared during its work. 89 of them have already found a family. In Zaporozhzhye children’s "media passports" have been created by "Happy Child" Charity Foundation since June 2013 with the support of Office of Children's Services of Zaporozhzhye Regional State Administration.
It should be noted that "Happy Child" is engaged in this kind of work since 2007. But this year, the work on creation of profiles is entering a qualitatively new level. Thus, the project participants are planning to bring family placement of orphans to a new level.
The profiles of children are placed on the official website of the Mediapassport project. Here one can find videos of the children and foster families, answers to frequently asked questions, information about the differences between adoption and guardianship or a foster family and orphanages of family type; a list of documents required for placement of a child into a family has also been added. Besides, information about these children is duplicated on the website of "Happy Child" Charity Foundation.
As of today there are about 50-60 couples who are ready to be potential adoptive parents in the Zaporozhzhye region, they are willing to take someone else's children and bring them up as their own. But according to Antonina Matveeva, the head of Office of Children's Services of Zaporozhzhye Regional State Administration, most of them, of course, imply adoption of toddlers under three years old. Therefore, she calls another advantage of the Mediapassport project - it will once again remind of the children older than 10 years old who also need a warm family no less than little kids.
Volunteers can help to create media passports of the orphans of the Zaporozhzhye region. First of all, we need journalists to write children's stories. Also, videographers (camera-control engineers) and video editors with professional equipment are needed.
Besides, we also require assistance in the promotion of public service advertisement - posters about the project - in hospitals, kindergartens and any public places.
Those who wish to help can contact the "Happy Child" - Tel +38 (061) 701-57-57, firstname.lastname@example.org
There are 4,151 children with the status of orphans in the Zaporozhzhye region. 3,253 children out of them live in the families:
- 109 live in orphanages of family type (OFT);
- 338 - in foster homes;
- 2,806 kids are in trusteeship (most often under the care of children’s relatives);
Currently, the amount of foster families numbers 176 and 16 orphanages of family type in the region.
898 orphans are still in orphanages and boarding schools. Most of these children are over 10 years old.
In Ukraine, there are 4 ways of placement of orphans in a family:
- Adoption (the preferred form, a one-time financial support from the state as at the birth of a child);
- Foster family (up to 4 children, ongoing support for the child from the state + salary to foster parents, they have to take classes);
- Family-type orphanage - OFT (up to 10 children, including parents’ own children; and the continued support from the state for the child + salary to foster parents, who have to undergo special training)
- Custody/ guardianship (mostly chosen by children's relatives, constant support from the state is provided, but no salary is paid to the parents).
Those who are willing to take a child into their family, can address Office of Children's Services of District State Administration, Office of Children's Services of Regional State Administration - Tel +38061 239-01-56 or the "Happy Child" +38 (061) 701-57-57, email@example.com.