Budapest, March 27 (MTI) – Hungary is facing a national shortage of 1,000 to 2,000 foster carers, a representative of the SOS Children’s Villages charity in Hungary told public news channel M1 on Sunday.
Viola Szlankó said the charity has launched a campaign to recruit new foster carers to join the country’s existing 5,500 foster parents. The campaign is targeting homemakers along with middle-class workers.
Demand for additional foster carers is especially high in the south-eastern and north-western parts of the country, she said.
Szlankó noted that under a child protection law passed in 2014, all children in institutional care under the age of 12 must be placed with foster families by 2017.
Foster care is meant to be temporary, as the state’s long-term aim for children in institutional care is to create the conditions for them to return to their birth families or to find adoptive parents for them, she said.
In Hungary, a foster home is allowed to take in a maximum of 5 children. State benefits for foster carers depend on the number of children in the home and whether they require special care, Szlankó said.