Trainers’ report from Ukraine

ICDP activities are conducted on an ongoing basis in Ukraine nationwide and there are facilitators in several cities, Kharkov, Kieve, Odessa, Vinnitsa, Zaporozhye, Kramatorsk, Severodonetsk and Chernigov – and each city has a coordinator who informs the ICDP Ukraine organization about specific details regarding local ICDP activities.

Due to the corona virus pandemic in 2020, Sergey Krasin and Anna Trukhan, both ICDP trainers, were unable to travel around the country to conduct ICDP training and supervision in person, as they would normally do. Instead, they carried out the ICDP work through internet platforms. They managed to meet in person only some of the ICDP participants in Kharkov, the city in which they live.

In the spring, Sergey and Anna conducted a two-day online network conference as a special event for ICDP facilitators. During this event they conducted 3 master class workshops. Participants found sharing of experiences particularly useful.

During 2020, some facilitators had problems adapting to online work, which they found tiring and for which they lacked tools, so they asked for assistance. In response Sergey and Anna went on supporting the work of facilitators through virtual means throughout 2020. One of the questions that arose was finding a solution to how to do role plays, since these were not possible to conduct in person. Facilitators are now using the Zoom personal room for three people to carry out some practical tasks.  For the purpose of virtual training some new materials and tools were created by trainers and these were shared with the network of facilitators.

In the Lugansk region parents live in very stressful conditions, especially those living along the border who tend to suffer from permanent emotional anxiety. In order to help these families two facilitators (who happen to be husband and wife) joined a Polish social organization that runs its interventions in the Lugansk area through a mobile team. By taking part in the mobile unit the couple managed to deliver ICDP to families that otherwise would have been impossible to reach.

In addition to parents, preschool and school teachers were also trained in different parts of the country.

In 2021, the government restrictions were changed and the new regulation allows meetings of up to twenty people, which opened up the scope of ICDP training.

Fifteen new facilitators were certified on 1st of March 2021. The newly trained facilitators work with vulnerable parents who were raised in orphanages. Most of these parents have several children, but they tend to find parenting very difficult. ICDP provides them with the kind of support they require and has strengthened their confidence enhancing their parenting skills.

Sergey and Anna adapted the format and delivery of the ICDP programme in line with the new educational policy in Ukraine. They are continuing to work on their PhD dissertation trying to prove that teachers could greatly benefit from becoming facilitators – this is conceptualized as a new approach to teaching, which they hope will be approved by the Ukrainian government at some point.

ICDP Ukraine operates under a local membership organization that was formed before Sergey and Anna (who are both psychologists) were trained in ICDP.  Their organization has 93 members who are based in 26 cities of Ukraine, and of which 43 members now hold ICDP diplomas. Membership includes psychologists, teachers, doctors, and other professionals from schools, preschools, universities and NGOs. Member fees help run ICDP Ukraine.  Members provide support through information sharing and networking. Through the network members exchange experiences on topics from different areas of work and help organize ICDP groups through their local contacts. On the other hand, Sergey and Anna’s organization is a member of a bigger network of psychologists, that consists of 15 organizations – and that is another area of networking for ICDP Ukraine.

The above was based on the verbal report via Zoom by Sergey Krasin and Anna Trukhan, ICDP Ukraine leaders, to Nicoletta Armstrong, ICDP chair.