MOSCOW, November 10 (Itar-Tass) —— More than 60,000 Russians are deprived of their parental rights annually, an official from the Russian Ministry of Education and Science said on Thursday.
“So far we are unable to reverse this trend, despite all serious measures taken in this area,” Alina Levitskaya, the director of the ministry’s department of children’s upbringing and socialization, told Russia’s first Foster Families Forum.
As of now, the federal database of parentless children has more than 127,000 names, she cited statistics. Some 70 percent of the figure are children older than ten years of age, as many as 17 percent are children aged from five to ten, a total of five percent are children aged from three to five, and eight percent – children under three.
“Russians are reluctant to adopt teenagers, on the other hand, teenagers themselves are not eager to live in foster families,” she noted.
She also pointed to the fact that in recent years the number of cases when foster parents return children to children’s home has been growing. In her words, more than 8,000 children are returned to boarding establishments annually. “Thus, as many as 8,212 child adoption permits were annulled in 2010, a total of 5,600 of them were revoked at foster parents’ request,” she added.
“The country needs a comprehensive and a well-elaborated adaptation system both for children and for foster parents to avoid situations when children are taken back to children’s homes,” she stressed.
The first Foster Families Forum that opened here on Thursday has brought together more than 200 participants, i.e. foster parents and officials from guardianship agencies, from 50 territories of Russia. Participants in the forum will discuss the most vital issues, such as protection of adopted children’s personal and property rights, support for foster families and the efficiency of the program to train foster parents.