Resilience Without Borders


Goals of the project:

1.  To provide a systematic support for the professionals working with vulnerable groups of people by the promotion and development of the resilience approach in Bulgaria and in the countries from Northeastern Europe.

 2. To ensure stable practical application of the Resilience in Bulgaria.



  • To develop of a structure needed for the accumulation and exchange of knowledge about the Resilience approach – a Resource Center (RC).
  • To increase the professional competence of various multidisciplinary teams working with the Resilience approach.
  • To develop and pilot specialized programs based on the Resilience approach in schools, specialized institutions and centers for social services.
  • To analyze and track the practical applications of the Resilience approach.


Relevance of the project:

The changes that have been taking place in the last few years in the social sphere related to the restructuring of institutions and the development of alternative services based in the community have lead to a considerable increase in the number of social service providers. The reforms are aiming at individualization of the work with clients and concentration on the needs of the client, deinstitutialization of the care for people at risk, and development of the care based at the ordinary social environment, work in multidisciplinary teams and network. At this point, the methodical support of specialists working in the helping professions is still insufficient and is not systematic, which presents a risk for the direct work with the clients. The experience of SAPI in the realization of training projects reveals that the support for professionals from the social sphere influences not only the quality of services provided, but also the success of the help provided to clients that are using these services.

In the framework of the project "Innovative Practices in Central and Northern Bulgaria" SAPI organized trainings on the Resilience approach for trainers that afterwards trained pedagogues and social workers at ten cities in the country. The activities of the project were realized with the support and the participation of members from the State Agency for Child Protection, the New Bulgarian University and the Sofia University, and with the support of providers acting at a national and regional level. The trainings that took place demonstrated that the professionals from the social and education spheres are interested at the Resilience approach as an approach that can guarantee a change of the work in the social and education spheres. The results from the activities of the project show that there is a need for steady dissemination of the Resilience approach in relation to: the realization of introductory and support trainings on Resilience; the development of a structure that will coordinate the training work on Resilience; the practical application, research activity and direction towards the priority realm of application of the Resilience – violence against children.

At this point, the work with victims of violence in Bulgaria is centered at an emergency intervention and there is a lack of activities aiming at the prevention of violence and a lack of services for victim support in dealing with the long-term effect of the experienced trauma. The Resilience allows for the inclusion of work not only related to crisis intervention, but also to long-term support for the clients. The essence of the approach ensures the coordination between various professionals and specialists and in most cases it turns out to be a prerequisite for successful assistance. 

The experience of SAPI in the dissemination of the Resilience approach so far reveals that certain professional groups (doctors, policemen, judges, journalists), as well as parents, are not included in trainings or programs although they have strong influence on the overall up-bringing of children to become valuable adults and to demonstrate their full potential. This situation calls for the planning of activities related to the attraction of these individuals just mentioned and their participation in activities promoting and piloting practices based on the Resilience in Bulgaria.


Funding Body - OAK Foundation