Example 7: Establishing Community-Based Supported Housing and Support Services in Moldova 

Project Type: Advocacy

The Organization

Keystone Human Services International Moldova Association (KHSIMA)
Chisinau, Moldova
E-mail:   khsima@keystonehumanservices.org
Web:  http://www.keystonemoldova.md

Keystone Human Services International (KHSI) is a family of non-profit, non-governmental organizations, including working to create environments where all people can grow, exercise self determination and be participating, contributing and valued members of their communities. Through subsidiaries in Eastern Europe, including the Moldova Association (KHSMA), KHSI advances the independence of people in vulnerable situations due to disability, institutionalization, poverty, abandonment and exploitation.

Keystone Human Services International Moldova Association (KHSIMA), a non-governmental organization that promotes the human rights and social inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities,

The Problem

In Moldova, as in many Central and Eastern European countries, many persons with intellectual disabilities are placed in long-stay institutions with little or no contact with their families or communities. A major reason for this is the lack of alternative services and support at the community level.

Actions Taken 

KHSIMA has worked effectively with the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare to establish community-based supported housing and other support services as alternatives to institutionalization. KHSIMA’s work includes:

  • Developing pilot community-based alternatives to institutions, focusing on supported housing, shared living, family reunification, and foster care.
  • Providing technical assistance for the development of legislation and financial mechanisms for community-based services.
  • Documenting the deinstitutionalization process as tool for learning and replication and developing an evidence-base for deinstitutionalization in Moldova.

Results & Lessons Learned 

  • KHSIMA’s work has shown that it is possible for non-governmental organisations to develop good quality community based services and to have a significant influence on policy and service development.
  • KHSIMA’s pilot community-based alternatives have been recognized by the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare for their quality, and have helped to make deinstitutionalization and the development of community based services a Ministry priority, with KHSIMA a key Ministry partner.
  • Policy and legislation for community-based services informed by implementing deinstitutionalization was adopted.