Saturday, March 21, 2009

HealthRight and Russian Partners Hold Conference on Programs Serving Youth and Families

The conference was organized by HealthRight
and the Russian NGO Doctors to Children.

On March 19-20, HealthRight International and over 360 of its Russian partners and volunteers gathered at the Karelia Hotel in St. Petersburg for the second annual international conference Family, Child, Society: Problems and Solutions, organized by HealthRight and the Russian NGO Doctors to Children.

The conference focused on the challenges facing children and families in contemporary Russia, highlighting HealthRight’s innovative models to build access to comprehensive health care and social services to families and children in difficult life situations, including street and at-risk children and youth, institutionalized children, victims of violence, and those affected by HIV/AIDS.

“This conference is a unique opportunity for child welfare professionals, policy-makers, both governmental and from non-government organizations from Russia and throughout the region to meet along with private and public-sector donors to discuss issues related to the health and well being of children and families, and to examine the models developed by HealthRight and Doctors to Children in Russia,” said Roman Yorick, HealthRight’s Regional Director for Russia and the former Soviet Union.

Presentations were given by HealthRight staff as well as HealthRight’s key supporters and partners for its work in Russia, including USAID, World Childhood Foundation, and the government of St. Petersburg.

The conference included presentations, workshops, and roundtables on a variety of topics, including:

  • HIV prevention and access to care for street youth
  • Models for a continuum of care for street youth
  • Providing assistance to abused children
  • Short-term placement of special needs children to professional respite families
  • Models of comprehensive support for foster families
  • Models of comprehensive assistance to HIV-affected families with young children

In addition to the conference proceedings, over 120 conference participants took part in site visits to HealthRight and DTC projects throughout St. Petersburg.

The conference also included the presentation of The Government and Business Social Responsibility Award given by HealthRight, Doctors to Children, and St. Petersburg Committee on Social Policy.  This year’s awardees included the Russian supermarket chain Lenta, and football player Andrey Arshavin.

Learn more about HealthRight’s work in Russia.

Learn more about Doctors to Children.