New premises for children’s services in alternative care

The directorate responsible for the alternative care of children and young people will be operating all its services from a new building in Santa Venera. This building will be ready next year and will provide all the services that fall under this directorate which employs 200 people.

During a site visit, Minister Michael Falzon said this project will continue to bring social services closer to the community.

The directorate for alternative child care within the Foundation for Social Welfare Services, FSWS, will be operating from a new building in Santa Venera which is part of a 2 million euro investment project.

This building will see all child protection services provided under one roof, including fostering and adoptions, supervised access service, medical care by the director’s pediatric consultant and specialist nurses, youth services in alternative care, and after-care for young people to start independent living, as well as socio-legal services.

The building has been specially designed to consume energy efficiently, so much so that it has double glazing in accordance with the highest health and safety standards. It is also accessible to everyone and provides use of a lift from the car park.

The Minister for the Family and Social Solidarity Michael Falzon said that work will be carried out as stipulated by the law on the protection of minors and alternative care. He said that with the completion of the new building, an electoral promise that was included in the 2013 electoral manifesto to set up a fostering center will be fulfilled.

“The purpose of the building is to bring together all the services on child protection. This is important because the environment will be facilitating this work and later so I am convinced that the service will also improve. ”

Minister Falzon also announced that he will soon start operating a Children’s House so that children who are asked to testify in court cases have a healthy environment.

“Children’s house is a place from where minors can testify in a different environment to that of the Court, a different and welcoming environment that has a dedicated premises and that is also in the interests of child protection. ”

FSWS Chief Executive Alfred Grixti said that this building will start operating from June next year.