Children + Parents
The City of Szczecin is implementing many tasks to ensure that the youngest children have the best possible care when they are not under care of their parents or legal guardians.
Making sure that the youngest children are provided with the best care possible is one of the tasks of local governments. The City of Szczecin is carrying out multiple tasks with this goal in mind. Nursery care requires attention and the right conditions in order for the little ones to feel comfortable and safe when their parents or carers are not around. Accordingly, continuous efforts are being made to increase the number of places in day care establishments for children up to three years of age.
cooperation with Szczecińskie Towarzystwo Budownictwa Społecznego Spółka z o.o. (a council housing association) involving the construction of a new nursery for about 60 children on the “Wrzosowe Wzgórze” estate in Szosa Polska Street (co-funded as part of the “Zając Borówka” Regional Operational Programme), a project owned by the Municipal Nursery Complex;
participation in external projects, including the implementation of an agreement on adding further 96 places as part of an EU ROP project called “New places in three municipal nurseries in Szczecin – enabling parents to balance their family and professional roles”;
implementation of a project under the “MALUCH+” 2019 programme (designed to expand care for children under three) (module 1b) to add 120 places in municipal nurseries.
It should be mentioned here that the Szczecin municipality took advantage of the provisions of the amended Act on care for children under three to focus its efforts on increasing the number of places in active day care establishments using the building resource available to municipal nurseries through remodelling and/or adaptive reuse. This made it possible to reduce the costs associated with building new establishments and with lease fees.
In view of the considerable number of projects in progress, including ones which involve the addition of new day care places for children under three, the Szczecin Municipality is planning to commence work on the design of a public nursery on the Książąt Pomorskich estate in Kułakowskiego / Pszczelna Street in Szczecin in 2020.
The Szczecin Day Care Voucher has been one of the flagships of the Szczecin Przyjazny Rodzinie (Szczecin – a Family-Friendly City) programme since its introduction in 2016.
It is a monetary monthly benefit of PLN 500 granted to parents of children aged one to three to help them pay for day care, whether by hiring childminders or enrolling their children with non-public nurseries or children’s clubs.
What is important is that these benefits are available not only to multi-children families, but also to parents of one child.
One of the core tasks of the City is to provide Szczecin's youngest residents with the right day care. The City has been consistently increasing the number of places in public kindergartens and kindergarten departments at primary schools to make sure that all the little ones can get the pre-school care they need.
Also, a growing amount of expenditures has been put into upgrading existing educational establishments. Szczecin is making sure that its kindergartens are up to the latest standards to provide the little ones with the conditions to thrive.
The City is upgrading and adapting its available building resource to suit the needs of pre-school establishments. However, new buildings are under construction as well, meeting all the latest requirements to secure children's needs and make sure they are completely safe. Szczecin’s kindergartens have large and spacious playrooms, safe playgrounds and up-to-date kitchen facilities to prepare healthy meals. We are confident that these conditions, combined with professional care, provide the right kind of environment for the youngest residents of Szczecin to thrive.
The Szczecin Family Card represents another component of the “Szczecin – a Family-Friendly City” programme.
“Szczecin – a Family-Friendly City” has been in place since 2012. As part of the programme, the City issues Szczecin Family Cards (SFC) to families which have at least two dependent children and live within the area of Szczecin, Police, Dobra (Szczecińska) or Kołbaskowo Municipalities.
SFC holders can benefit from attractive discounts offered by Programme Partners, including both municipal institutions (such as theatres and sports & recreation centres) and private businesses.
For detailed information on discounts and allowances, see the programme’s website on www.przyjaznyrodzinie.szczecin.pl.
The “Lighter Backpack” programme is a measure to promote the healthy development of Szczecin's pupils.
A certain amount of funds has been earmarked in the City’s budget in 2019 to purchase an additional set of handbooks for each primary-school pupil. With two sets of handbooks available to them, one at school and one at home, the youngest residents of Szczecin no longer have to carry heavy backpacks to school. This means less strain on their developing bodies, preventing postural defects and promoting overall health.
Responsibility for the purchase of handbook sets lies with individual establishments.
In 2019 Szczecin launched a city programme to fund the treatment of infertility using the in vitro fertilisation method. The programme will run from 2019 to 2021. Its primary aim is to help couples for whom in vitro fertilisation is the only way to have offspring. The programme provides the opportunity to reduce the number of childless couples in Szczecin, improve infertility treatment standards and counter adverse demographic trends by employing the most effective and scientifically proven methods.
A total of about 100 couples may benefit from the programme. For eligibility, they need to be Szczecin's residents since at least 01 January 2017, and they have to produce medical documentation to prove the cause of infertility, or to demonstrate that their treatment of infertility, in line with standard recommendations and medical practices, was ineffective in the period of 12 months preceding their application to the programme. In particular, the programme will be addressed to couples who have used health benefits as part of the co-funding provided for the expanded programme called “Comprehensive reproductive-health assessment in Poland in 2016–2020”, carried out by the SPSK Nr 1 PUM hospital.
Following a competitive procedure, the VitroLive clinic from Szczecin and the INVICTA clinic from Gdańsk were chosen to implement the health policy programme called “In vitro fertilisation funding programme 2019–2021”. In choosing these two bidders, the City was guided by the well-being of Szczecin's couples which will take part in the programme.
Szczecin's couples may enter the programme in four Polish cities – Szczecin (VitroLive), Gdańsk, Warsaw and Wrocław (INVICTA). Treating infertility is a very delicate matter, requiring as much psychological comfort as possible, hence the option of choosing the location of treatment. This way, couples can avoid possible stigmatisation in their local communities, and keep their anonymity and intimacy. Couples are completely free to decide where they want to have the procedure as part of the programme.
The programme is estimated to cost a total of PLN 850,000 gross in the years 2019–2021.