Visitors from Moldova were given an insight into how we support disabled children and those at risk, to remain living with their families, as part of a fact finding visit recently.
The group, from Gagauzia, an Autonomous Territory in Southern Moldova, have been travelling around the country as part of a study visit. Gagauzia has two institutions which are due to close in 2019, so they need to shape a plan for supporting children and their families into the future.
The Wiltshire visit was part of a three day tour arranged by the charity Lumos, which was set up to support children moving out of institutions in certain countries.
The officials met with staff and children at Wansdyke School and then travelled to meet some of the children and young people at Canon’s House in Devizes. The house is a short-break residential home to provide a break for carers as well as helping the child to remain in the family home.
Laura Mayes, cabinet member for children, joined the visitors as they looked at the facilities and support available at Canon’s House.
She said: “It was lovely to meet the visitors as they gained a deeper understanding of how we support and work with our disabled children and their families.
“Here in Wiltshire we continue to learn and review to ensure we are doing the best for our children and families. We have been able to share these insights and I hope they will help inform how this area of Moldova looks after its children and young people in the future.”
Tatiana Doiceva Head of Department of Finance at Gagauzia said: “Thank you. It was a huge opportunity for us to see the work with children, starting from birth up to young adults. As a mother I was so impressed with the level of care and love shown at the centres. I was also impressed by the budgets! I will make sure that we allocate our money towards improving the lives of our children.”
Olesea Tanasoglo – Vice President of the Executive Committee UTAG said: “We met with the Wiltshire Parent Carer Council. This was a very good experience for us. We should like to establish something like this in Moldova. There was a real emphasis on training the parents and foster parents. We loved the way the child is always at the centre of your thinking.”