Report Budeovice (2004)

Jihočeskă univerzita v Českŷch Budějovicích
Zdravotnĕ sociální fakulta

University of South Bohemia
České Budĕjovice, Czech Republic
Faculty of Health and Social studies, Institute of Social Work

International University Week 2004
26.04.2004 – 30-04.2004

Social work for families with children

The International University Week 2004 with the topic “Social work for families with children” took place in the Czech Republic, more precisely in Ceske Budejovice. We, Petra and Maria, were two of the eight guests at the University of South Bohemia. This occasion attended with us two students from Belgium, three from Emden (Germany) and one from Norway.
The participants
The South Bohemian Region in Czech Republic is well known for its delightful landscape, impressive noble seats and a number of small castles. Ceske Budejovice – the South The market square Bohemian metropolis – was founded in 1265 near an original settlement called Budivojovice and was planned very generously with a big quadrate square and wide, regularly arranged streets which can be visited even today. In 1991 the University of South Bohemia was established and in 2003 it counted more than 7000 students, almost 800 staff members and about 50 buildings either in the city or on the campus. The Faculty of Health and Social Studies as a part of this University had 1200 students in 2003 and has seven Bachelor subjects, three Master and one Doctoral study programs. This faculty contains several individual departments, for example the Department of Pre-clinical and Clinical Subjects, the Department of Psychiatry and Psychology and the Department of Social Subjects.
The famous Black Tower A small street in the city
All of us guests got the possibility to visit this wonderful region, this magnificent and outstanding town with its University and its welcoming and kind students. We all had wonderful hosts who took pleasant care of us the whole week and who organized our trips all over the town, no matter if it was included in the program or for our own pleasure.On the first day, on Monday, everybody arrived on the train station and was picked up by his or her host. We stayed with Jitka and her parents in a small village near the town called Adamov. After a first short walk through the heart of Ceske Budejovice we met with some of the other guests and hosts to have a drink in a coffeehouse which is managed by handicapped people.
In the evening the official welcome meeting took place with the dean of Health and Social Faculty Prof. MUDr. Milos Veleminsky, CSc., with who we talked about our expectations for the week and experiences during our studies. We also had dinner there and got interviewed by the university magazin.

On tuesday morning another welcoming meeting with the regional authority MUDr Pavelka from the South Bohemia Region took place in which we heard a lecture about “Social and legal protection of child” held by Mgr. Studenovsky. He explained us the principles of adoption and foster care in the Czech Republic, premises, procedure and consequences.
Thereafter we visited the K-Centre, a contact- and crises centre for drug addicts, which offers different kinds of services, for example counseling (information about drug abuse in relation to diseases, safe use of drugs, safer sex etc.), an exchange program for used needles, the contact room and different kinds of therapy. They also provide the opportunity for drug addicts to take a shower, wash their clothes and have something to eat and drink for a small amount of money.

In the afternoon we went on an excursion to the castle Hluboka. We enjoyed the guided tour through the castle and took a walk through the park and relished the sunshine.In the evening we usually had one or two glasses of the very good Czech beers in one of the wonderful small and cosy pubs.

After these day we started early in the morning on Wednesday with visiting an institution for counseling for families and interpersonal relationships and for crises intervention. Dr. Nesnidal told us about the Hotline for Trust as one part and about the Center for the families and the interpersonal relationships as the other part of their work. He explained the main problems which they deal with and how they work with their clients during different crisis.
Shortly after this institution we went to see a Crisis Center which is focused on the work with children who are in danger, who experienced violence, whose parents got divorced and now need help to deal with it or who have educational problems etc. They not only offer a daily program with therapy and counseling, they also give the kids the opportunity to stay there for several nights. But they try to work with the whole family, too.
After lunch Mark A. Small, J.D., PhD. from the Institute of Family and Neighborhood Life at Clemson University, South Carolina, USA gave us a remarkable lecture about “Child Maltreatment in the United States”.
During the late afternoon we went on a tour to different parts of the city and to the brewery and restaurant Budvar, the well-known Czech Beer. :-)

Thursday started in APRIDA, a center for handicapped children. Here the kids are able to attend a special school for their special needs as well as leisure activities and diagnostics, therapy, rehabilitation, respital care etc. Afterwards we heard a lecture about “Some social aspects of today’s post-communist families on a Slovak model and our possibility of solving problems” from doc. Ing. Libusa Radkova, PhD., from Trnava University in Western Slovakia. During the afternoon we visited the Salesian youth center – house for children and adolescents, a catholic Christian meeting place. Its specialty is the day for gipsy children and adolescents every week. In the evening we celebrated a small fare well party in a little tavern on a village in the proximity of Ceske Budejovice.
Fare well party
Friday we left early in the morning… But we keep this international week in a very good mind. It was a great experience to see the “social live” in this country.
Therefore we would like to say THANK YOU to everybody who organised this week for us, who hosted us as guets who did the best to let us feel more than comfortable.


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