Sunday, October 1, 2023

A baby without a foster family, twins who have never left the hospital,…: Youth Aid professionals cry out in anguish

Several dozen people gathered on Tuesday in front of the MontLégia clinic (CHC) in Liège, at the call of the Liège Collective, to draw attention to the difficulties faced by the various youth support structures. These workers expressed their feeling of helplessness toward the many children in dangerous situations who do not receive adequate help.

Several dozen people who work in youth support structures, psychomedical-social centers (PMS), mental health, ONE and even SOS Enfants du MontLégia were present.

Some spoke out to highlight specific cases, such as that of an eight-month-old girl hospitalized when she was three months old after being shaken by her father. The boy remains in the hospital “because we cannot find a foster family.”

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The seven-month-old twins have not left the hospital since their birth, also due to lack of foster care, the speeches illustrated.

There are different services represented here that report to different ministers. Each one takes care of their own abilities without there being a global vision towards these children in difficulties.“, denounced Nadine Lipstadt, director of the residential service for young people “La Frênaie”, and Marianne Balaes, director of the family foster care support service “En famille”.There is no cohesion, which creates a rupture in the life course of hundreds of children. Therefore, we want to place the child in a dangerous situation at the center of political concerns.

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At the initiative of the event, the Liège Collective was created in April 2023, after a meeting that brought together staff from the youth aid sector and public and private services. One thousand children in danger in the Liège district – according to the waiting lists of the SAJ and the SPJ of Liège – do not receive adequate help. Given this observation, workers in the sector have decided to act to draw the attention of the political world to the need to react in a sustainable way.

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