People with intellectual disabilities in Moldova are capable of leading an independent life and enjoying the same opportunities as their fellow citizens. In order to achieve that goal, however, they may require developmental support, as well as appreciation and respect from others.
With the support of Keystone Human Services International Moldova Association (KHSIMA), many people now have the opportunity to live within their communities, and benefit from access to a number of specialized support and placement services. Last week, in the framework of the Community for All – Moldova Program, five types of services that support social inclusion of people with disabilities were launched: Supported Living, Community Home, Resource Center for Inclusive Education, Mobile Team and Specialized Family Placement.
The services were developed in eight counties, in partnership with local public authorities. They are designed to meet the needs of people with a wide range of intellectual disabilities, depending on their age, abilities and level of personal autonomy.
The individuals who use the Supported Living, Community Home and Specialized Family Placement services have been deinstitutionalized from the Home for Children (boys) with Mental Disabilities in Orhei. They now live in comfortable and accessible homes, similar to a family one.
The Community Homes, created in the Mitoc village, Orhei county and Voloave village, Soroca county, are meant for children with mental disabilities who require protection, care and continuous specialized care. Four boys have been placed in each home and, with the support of the specialists, are already making progress in communication, as well as increasing their abilities and self-respect .
The Supported Living service, located in Orhei, is designed for adults who have a high level of independence and can be easily integrated into society. It is home to four young men, who have learned to take care of the house , prepare food and look after animals. Two of them are employed in the work force.
Another service that is aimed at helping adults is the Specialized Family Placement, in which an adult with mental disabilities who cannot live independently joins a family in the community. Right now, one adult has joined a family in Telenesti, where he benefits from care, support, good living conditions and a good education.
A lot of the people with disabilities and their families require assistance at home because they have no means of transportation or they live in isolated communities. The Mobile Team, which was launched in the city of Chisinau and five counties – Telenesti, Edinet, Leova, Orhei, and Soroca – was created to support people in their own homes. These teams are made up of a number of specialists, who offer medical, social, psychological, rehab and recuperative assistance. Up to the present time, the teams have carried out over 4,000 specialized interventions, ensuring that individuals have access to community services.
In total, nine Mobile Teams have been created with the support of the Community for All – Moldova Program.
The Community Home, Supported Living, and Mobile Team services operate based on the framework Regulation and Quality Standards developed by the Ministry of Labor, Social Protection and Family with the support of KHSIMA and approved by the Government last year.
In Anenii Noi, in partnership with the local public authorities, the Resource Center for Inclusive Education was created. This service is designed for school inclusion and facilitating access to education for children with special educational needs from the nearby region. A multidisciplinary team works within the framework of the Center: a psychologist, speech therapist, and a medical assistant who develop individualized educational plans for every child. Thanks to the support offered by the specialists, the children can better master the material and can be better integrated into the school and into the community.
The Community for All – Moldova Program is implemented by Keystone Human Services International Moldova Association in partnership with the Ministry of Labor, Social Protection and Family, with the financial support of the Open Society Foundation/Mental Health Initiative and Soros Foundation – Moldova and aims to contribute to the reform of the system of social care and protection of people with disabilities in terms of their social inclusion.
Throughout 2012, the Program plans to open four more Community Homes, one more Supported Living and two more Respite services. Also, Professional Parenting Assistance and Specialized Family Assistance services will be launched in 10 counties.