Strengthening the capacities of employees in the institution for implementation of deinstitutionalization process

Within the project “A way from the institution to the independent life”- Strengthening the capacities of key actors of institution’s transformation, deinstitutionalisation and social inclusion of persons with intellectual disability in local community, financed by European Union within the project “Open arm”, two seminars for employees in Kulina institution were held. The seminars “Strengthening the capacities of employees in the institution for implementation of deinstitutionalisation process” were held four days in succession, on September the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th in the duration of 2 days for each one.

The seminar included 30 participants in total (15 per seminar) who are employed in Kulina institution and are of different profiles (carers, nurses, therapist, and instructors for work in special conditions). Since one of important goals of this education is to influence attitude change among employees towards persons with intellectual disability and transition from medical to social model, the special attention was focused on acquiring knowledge and skills to prepare beneficiaries for independent life.

The methodology of the seminar was set up so that members of expert team went through training, also organized within the project (“Training for trainers” under accredited programme “Life Skill’s School”) and after that the chance was given to those most successful to transfer their knowledge and competences to other colleagues. This methodology has showed, during these two seminars, to be very important for encouraging people employed in the institution, both expert services and persons who have most direct contact with beneficiaries. It has also influenced encouraging team building, breaking prejudice related to institution’s transformation and deinstitutionalisation of the beneficiaries. Besides, Kulina institution has got educated trainers who would implement educations in the future within the institution they work in.

The analysis of Final questionnaires has given information that, after the education, it is clearer for all participants what process of transformation includes. This was one of participants’ most important expectations.  They had also the opportunity to try themselves in the roll of the person who fulfills documentation about beneficiary (which was new for the majority) and how to enhance beneficiary’s functionality through concrete work. The conclusion after education’s competition is that this is one successfully started process where it is very important to involve all actors in the process of transformation (starting from carers and medical staff to experts). They should be aware that mutual support is very important, as well as the lack of information creates uncertainty and resistance to the change.

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