Social worker Galina Mollova is participating in Erasmus+ exchange


Between 06 and 10 March 2018, a European Exchange on “Family Group Conferences” was held in Leeds, UK.  Family Rights Group hosted the meetings. The exchange takes place under the Erasmus+ program.

The meeting was attended by participants from four countries – Bulgaria, Germany, France and the UK, at the invitation of the Tulip Foundation – a sending organization from Bulgaria. Galina Mollova, a social worker at the Center for Community Support, Kazanlak, took part in the exchange.

She said that each country shared its progress in organizing and conducting Family Group Conferences, their benefits, and their success. At present, this method is the most common in Germany and the UK, and now there is a growing popularity in France, and a network of coordinators has been established to support these conferences.

 

On the last day of the exchange various workshops were organized in which the participants had the opportunity to join. They were focused on how Familial Group Conferences are being practiced, how they can be applied among young people and adolescents. There was a meeting with families who had passed through a family group conference who shared the process and the benefits of doing so.

In the future, the participating countries will be visiting each other. The next exchange will take place in Bulgaria in September.

A family group conference is a meeting of the family and the people closest to it. Usually they are members of the extended family and friends, but they can also be close relatives – neighbors, friends of children, colleagues or more distant relatives. The meeting is organized to support families who have problems. Coordinator is the person who organizes the group meeting. He invites everyone you want to participate in and ensures their presence. The cordinators are only present at the beginning of the meeting to inform the family of the problems and the support that can be given. He then leaves the room and the family begins to discuss the problem and create a rescue plan to provide security. The family takes responsibility to implement the plan. They are not to be found at fault, but to help find solutions to the problems. The beginning of the practice of the Family Group Conferences in Bulgaria was initiated by the Tulip Foundation.

Thanks to the Tulip Foundation, since 2016 the Center for Community Support in Kazanlak also organizes and conducts Family Group Conferences.