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Framing Resource

Talking about child-family separation in Bulgaria

May 10, 2023

Each and every child needs the same things to thrive: a safe and stimulating home and stable, caring relationships. We know that, unless there is violence or mistreatment, all children benefit from the care and support that families provide.

Advocates working to end family separation face a series of challenges. For people without firsthand experience of it, separation is not seen as a significant issue in Bulgaria. And in particular, people often think that:

  • family separation happens when parents make poor choices or have poor morals
  • family separation is simply a product of eroded values and the instability of modern life, and
  • the state has a role in supporting families –but lacks capacity to do so.

How family separation happens – and so what can prevent it – is neither widely known nor understood.

The framing strategy and recommendations that follow are designed to navigate this challenge. They sit alongside work by Tanya’s Dream Fund to keep families together and at the centre of the child protection system. They draw from a body of exploratory framing research conducted in Bulgaria from August to December 2022, led by the FrameWorks Institute and FrameWorks UK, and realised on the ground by Junction Bulgaria.