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The Solution

Children should not grow up in institutions, with their depersonalised spaces and complete isolation from society. Lumos works on every level, with every actor, to transform an outdated and harmful system into one which supports and protects children and enables them to have a positive future.

Effective deinstitutionalisation requires many processes to happen simultaneously in a coordinated manner: from training personnel to planning new budgets, from assessing children to preparing families. Every aspect must be planned and implemented carefully to prevent harm and ensure good outcomes.

Together with other experts, Lumos has developed 10 principles that underpin deinstitutionalisation. If applied, they ensure that all decisions are made in the best interests of children and that children are protected throughout the process. These principles can be adapted to any country context.

Lumos works at every level, from the individual child to international decision makers, to remove obstacles to deinstitutionalisation. In this way, the needs and rights of children are central to the actions of international policy makers and funders, national governments and local communities.

Changing attitudes

Connecting services together

Convincing stakeholders

Developing alternative forms of care

Developing targeted social services

Financing the change

International advocacy

Reuniting children with their families

Self-advocacy

Strengthening Universal Services

Training and capacity building

Children should not grow up in institutions, with their depersonalised spaces and complete isolation from society. Lumos works on every level, with every actor, to transform an outdated and harmful system into one which supports and protects children and enables them to have a positive future.

Lumos' work is based on evidence and universal principles. Our approach is tried and tested. We leverage the resources of others, identify and fill gaps and connect the efforts of partners. Our results are high impact, sustainable change. Individual children are central to all our decisions.

We engage with all those needed to change the system, from international decision makers to children and families. We show how our solutions work at every level and advocate on behalf of children. More importantly we support children to speak up and influence change in their lives and communities.

Policy makers and managers responsible for children's care need support to develop the vision for replacing institutions with community based services. Then they need assistance to translate their vision into reality. Lumos' local and international experts support them every step of the way.

To ensure changes to the system are sustainable, service managers need support in transferring finances from institutions to community services. Societal and professional attitudes must change to prioritise the most vulnerable. Professionals need skills development to meet the needs of all children.

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"In four years, Lumos supported nearly 12,000 children to move from harmful institutions into safe, caring family environments"- Lumos Annual Review 2013
All future teachers will understand special educational needs. Inclusive education will become the norm, rather than the exception.
We only saw each other on Saturdays and Sundays but this is not enough for any child. Everything changed after we took our child from the institution.
"Everything changed for the better when I returned home. Here I feel looked after, loved and needed."- Dan,reunited with his family by Lumos