from Liz Hulley

Is it possible that I actually agree with Medvedev on something? (not that I watch his every move)

Every once in a while, I’m alerted to something in the media that gives me hope that Russian orphans are going to receive some justice.

A ministry serving orphans in Moscow published a translation of Medvedev’s recent comments to this effect.

“Unfortunately, in our country there are still 130,000 children remaining without family care. They have neither parents, not guardians, they are deprived of what’s primary – the warmth of the family. And there is still very much left to do to make sure that the very concept of “throw-away” children is removed from our life. There should be guardianship/foster organizations focused on placing children with families and supporting those families. In general there must not be children in our country that are “nobody’s”.

“The so-called ‘correctional’ children’s homes are faced with such a serious problem. They, unfortunately, work in such a way as to lead to the increasing isolation of children, rather than their socialization. Therefore not only public services, but also civil society must pay attention to what is happening here. At each baby house, in orphanages and in correctional establishments it is necessary to create boards of trustees whose work should be completely open and transparent.

“Finally, we need programmes of social adaptation and support for those who have come out of orphanages. It is not enough to train and feed children – they need to be brought out into a new, adult life prepared and self-assured. Here the role not only of teachers, but also of local authorities is great. They could pay, for example, the cost for those who have come out of orphanages to take courses which would prepare them to enter the system of higher and further education and vocational training.”

It sure sounds good. I appreciate the fact that Medvedev calls attention to the need for families (if briefly), and also the need for help with the transition to adult life. Yes, the orphans do need all this. Now, who is going to give this to them? They need a miracle.