Pärnu city child protectors Irene Peterson and Marko Truu have accomplished quite a feat: for years, they have toiled to secure all neglected kids a new family instead of going for the children's home option. Some seem to have to blaze the trail - for others to follow.
The reasons biological parents aren’t the best to raise their kids are various and manifold. A decision to separate a child from parents is never easy and obviously comes as the very last resort.
But, should sickness, circumstance or addiction leave no option, specialists will have to go by the interests of the kids interests. Alas, said interests may mean protecting them from own biological parents.
The Estonian rule in such cases is substitute homes. Thankfully, lion’s share of these have been rebuilt into cosy houses and at least renovated.
And yet, there’s nothing to replace a family.
It’s not just the issue of personnel turnover at any institutions, and the children’s need to have stable relationships. It’s more than that.
A kid needs to belong. A family with its traditions is what provides the roots, and the feeling of belonging to be passed on to own children.
So that’s the aspect that families interested in helping ought to deeply consider. It’s not just the place of safety. It’s the willingness to grow together into oneness, despite the problems ahead.
Having families possessing such readiness, and the people toiling to search them out, is welcome hope indeed.