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pum (8)On March 6, 2014, the city’s history museum hosted the annual conference of the partner organizations who manage Ruse’s complex for social services. The key word in all the speeches and presentations proved to be the word “partnership”.

The first speaker was the Deputy Regional Governor Mrs. Aylyan Karamehmedova , who noted the key role of ” Equilibrium ” in the process of deinstitutionalization from closing the first baby institution in Bulgaria in Teteven to playing a key role in implementing the local DI strategy.

Mrs. Mariela Licheva – head of the directorate of social assistance also made reference to the strong working relationships among partner organizations and between professionals and communities that led towards the best alternative care for children in institutions and reforms in social services at both national and local level.

The heads of the various departments in the complex charted the 2013 milestones in the delivery of integrated services: Svetla Mezhri –centre for social support , Stefka Peteva – centre foe street children , Nadia Petrova – small group homes and, finally, the operations director of the complex – Milena Vlahova. Together they painted a detailed picture of the level of improvisation and innovation required to adapt an existing repertoire of services to the demands of deinstitutionalization.

The substantial number of cases managed by the complex during 2013 involved a complex range of challenges that demanded a focus on the nest outcomes for children including many with disabilities.

A special surprise was donated by the artist Ognjan Balkandzhiev – oil paintings dedicated to the work of the three departments that will be included in a forthcoming charity auction event.

Yanka Deleva, psychologist, presented the work on the life story books of the deinstitutionalised children. Petya Stoyanova, a youth worker from the centre for street children helped three young clients to present their visual story-books that tell the tale of their year at the complex and help present their highlights and achievements to the audience.

Galia Bisset made the final presentation picking up on Elena Petkova’s theme of an expanding network of partnerships with international contacts and the multiplication of the model of the Complex in other countries .

Flexibility and creativity in response to the changing needs of vulnerable children and families are the main priorities that EQ will continue to follow in the current year reflecting our chairman’s message of prioritizing outcomes in the best interests of children over adherence to ‘’traditional” processes and methods.