Family Strengthening Project in Tavush region
The Family Strengthening Project in Tavush region is funded by the Austrian Development Agency and SOS Children’s Villages Austria and has been functioning since July 2015. The project goal is to strengthen the social support system in Tavush Region for effective response to the needs of vulnerable children and families. The project aims at reaching 400 children and 200 families living in difficult life circumstances, 100 vulnerable women and 35 state specialists/social workers.
The project is implemented in two urban settings of Tavush Province: Noyemberyan and Berd that are considered as the most vulnerable ones due to location close to the armed conflict zone with Azerbaijan, high unemployment rate, high rate of economic migration among male population and high poverty rate. Each town has certain amount of villages (rural areas) adjacent to them and in the scope of the project 16 rural settings attached to each town are included in the project.
The project provides mobile and stationary services at the same time:
- In accordance with individual needs of beneficiaries all 200 families are provided with various types of support: psycho-social, material, health, parenting, legal and educational. Through project implementation, the living conditions of the targeted families and health condition of the family members have improved to a certain extent.
- Activities aimed at developing children and improving their communicative and adaptive abilities, such as hobby groups, individual and group psychological work, have led to a greater involvement of children in community life and positive impact on psychological state of children. Provision of necessary school supplies and tutorship has contributed to improvement of school attendance and academic progress of children.
- The development of the abilities of parents is extremely important for achieving more or less long-term changes in the life of the target families. This applies to both parental skills of caring for children, as well as knowledge and skills for protecting their rights, conducting business, etc. Due to significant efforts of the project in this direction parents have improved their parental skills and families have enhanced their social skills.
- As unemployment and absence of stable income are the main factors catalysing their vulnerability, we focus on economic empowerment of families, especially women. The targeted families were provided with vocational trainings, working tools and supplies. This has led to stabilizing the financial situation of the targeted families, reducing poverty in the target communities and increasing the level of community mobility and integration.
One of the nonetheless important project activities is developing knowledge and skills of the representatives of community structures working with children and families in difficult life circumstances. For this purpose, we organize and conduct trainings and practical discussions.
Family Strenghtening Project in Idjevan
The Family Strengthening Project in Idjevan provides multilateral (economic, material, psychosocial, health, educational and parenting) support to the families according to the initially elaborated family development plans. As a result, families and children receive the following well-planned and need-based support:
- Health support (medical check-up, provision of medicine, medical treatment). The provided support helps to significantly improve and stabilize health condition of the children and the parents and to prevent more serious and dangerous diseases.
- Educational support (provision of stationary, textbooks, school bags, educational games) leads to the significant improvement of school attendance and academic progress of the children.
- Psychological support (individual and group psychological consultation, primary psychological assessment, art therapy on different themes). As a result of this support, the psychological state of the children and parents considerably improved. The group work with the parents has had positive impact on family atmosphere and interpersonal relationships.
- Social support, when the children included in the project are provided with an opportunity to attend various hobby groups (piano, violin, vocal, folk musical instruments, dance, painting, creative technologies). This contributes to the self-development and socialization of the most vulnerable and isolated children.
- Material support, like basic food packages, milk formula for new born children, hygienic items, seasonal clothes (once a year), and domestic supplies. The assistance has significant impact on health and self-perception of the children and parents.
- Economic sustainability. The project efforts directed to the economic stabilization of the families are to be especially emphasized. Several skills development, professional education and vocational courses are organized for the parents and young adults.
- Parenting support, where much attention is paid to the development of parental knowledge and skills of the participants. As a result of provided assistance the parents obtain theoretical knowledge and practical skills on how to take care and bring up their children.