Vaiku Geroves Centras "Pastoge"
Child welfare center was setup in 1995, as the first innovative Lithuanian project, focused on family foster care and sharing best practices. „Pastogė“ mission is to provide temporary shelter in the family for a neglected child, to help child’s parents solve their own problems, with a purpose that child would have an opportunity to return to his/her family, or find him a new foster or adoptive parents. Institution has 5 services: children department, family assistance office, foster-parents family service, adoption service, child hot line.
- In children department are temporary accommodated children who have been unable to live in their families for their parents problems. Children are provided with temporary foster care. This department has beds for 20 children between 3 to 14 years old, in exceptional cases younger or older children are accepted.
- family support service assistance office are working with children, who are living in children department, and their families, or children living in foster care families, trying to help them to solve their problems, monitoring families, in which children are returned, for the prevention.
- foster-parents family service assess foster care parents by GIMK method, organize for foster care parents and children individual consultancies, methodical and psychological help, organize mutual support groups for foster care parents. Social services are also provided for relatives foster care families who have problems.
- adoption service assess adoptive parents by GIMK method, organize consultancies after the adoption, provide social services for families who are fostering child and planning to adopt him/her, organize mutual support groups for adoptive parents.
- child hot line is providing an anonymous psychological help for children by telephone.
“Pastogė“ has 35 workers, most of them are social workers and social pedagogues, having university education. „Pastogė“ initiated a lot of positive changes in creating unite system of foster care and adoption in Lithuania.
Over 18 years of „Pastogė“ existing, this institution is seeking to expand social services and to improve it‘s quality, various projects are making and actualizing. From the beginning “Pastogė” is cooperating and sharing best practice with other institutions and organizations. Since 2004 institution became the Methodical centre: it is collecting, generalizing practical work, other institutions and countries practices, innovations, sharing knowledge by cooperating with other institutions, doing trainings with the purpose to raise qualification of workers. Seminars, conferences, continuing trainings for foster care/adoptive parents by GIMK method are organized permanently in institution. Often arrive members of other institutions from all over Lithuania or foreign countries to familiarize with institution’s activity. In reconstructed accommodation are traiAning rooms, suitable for organizing conferences, seminars, group works. “Pastogė” is disposing all the equipment required for demonstrating stuff in training groups. Most of institution workers are taking part in various projects and training other specialists.