FOR EVERY CHILD’S BEST START: Visit to the newly developed development counseling center in the Health Center Zvezdara


Development Center of the Health Center Zvezdara, equipped with new furniture for children and children with children’s furniture in the period 2017 – 2018, was visited today by the Director of UNICEF in Serbia, Regina De Dominićis, Assistant Minister the health of Dr. Vesna Knjeginjić and the creator of VODAVODA brand Vojin Đorđević.

Development Counseling Center of the Health Center Zvezdara.
Belgrade 13.11.2018 © UNICEF Serbia / 2018 / Shubuckl

The counseling center is equipped with the program “Improvement of primary health care to support the development of children in the earliest childhood in Belgrade”, so that experts will be able to improve their knowledge and skills in identifying problems in the development of young children, planning and providing the necessary support to children with disabilities and disabilities and their parents.

“In the earliest childhood, from birth to third year, the foundations for life success, health and well-being are laid. This is the period when the child’s brain is most suitable for new learning, but also the most compelling to fully or partially compensate for developmental delays sampled by various negative influences before, during and after the child’s birth. The period of early childhood is the most important development phase in each person’s life, and for children with disabilities and disabilities this period is irreplaceable. That is why investment in early childhood development, and especially early identification services and early intervention, is one of the priorities of UNICEF’s work with the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Serbia. We thank our corporate partner VODAVODA for dedicated investment in the early development of children and the significant contributions they give in this area, “said Regina De Dominićis, UNICEF Director.

The program “Improving primary health care to support the development of children in the earliest childhood in Belgrade”, which took place during 2017-2018. conducted in partnership with the Association of Pediatricians of Serbia and 15 Belgrade Health Centers, was developed within the framework of the cooperation program between the Ministry of Health and UNICEF. It is aimed at improving the capacity of the health system to support the development of children in the earliest years of life. The program is in line with the Decree on the National Program for the Advancement of Early Childhood Development adopted by the Government of the Republic of Serbia in 2016, and the activities of the program are part of the Memorandum of Cooperation between the City of Belgrade and UNICEF in Serbia.

“According to the latest review of the Institute of Public Health, there are 35 development counseling centers in Serbia that have different capacities. That’s why we are working intensively on improving and modernizing their work. We want to ensure that every child with developmental disabilities and their parents have access to these very important services since the early days of the child’s life. We believe that soon every district in Serbia will have at least one quality development consultancy, “said Dr Knjegnjić.

The guests were also addressed by the Director of the Health Center Zvezdara, Dr Dragana Trifunović Balanović.
“The development center of the health center Zvezdara provides services to families and children since 1980. We have always endeavored to apply the latest knowledge in the provision of early recognition and early intervention services to ensure that through work with a professional team, children receive the best support, and parents are the highest quality advice on how to encourage the development of their children through daily life activities, “she said Dr Dragana Trifunović Balanović.

Thanks to the partnership partnership between UNICEF in Serbia and VODAVODA, the development centers in the health centers Zvezdara and Lazarevac have been renovated and equipped with new furniture and didactic tools. This partnership has provided additional training for 104 pediatricians and healthcare associates from development consultations in Belgrade.

Healthcare workers have a unique opportunity to educate parents how to encourage the development of their children, to spot early developmental disorders, and to mobilize other professionals for joint assistance to their families on time. With the support of VODAVODA, another 15,000 children from the municipalities of Zvezdara and Lazarevac will be able to use the improved service of development consulting services.

“Water is one of the basic resources for life. At VODAVODA, we have a product that is recognized for quality and we want to contribute to the well-being of children who need to get the services they need in the first days of their life, which will provide them with a healthy and productive life. In addition to UNICEF, we support national efforts to ensure that every child in our country realizes its potential and leads a happy and productive life. Our mission is to work on raising the awareness of each individual about the importance of investing in children from the earliest age, because that is what makes us the best basis for a healthy and successful nation in the future, “says VODAVODA’s creator Vojin Djordjevic.

During 2017-2018. Thanks to the program “Improvement of primary health care to support the development of children in the earliest childhood in Belgrade”, more than 3,600 children and 7,000 parents in Belgrade received improved pediatrician services in the field of early development. Every fifth child is sent to development counseling due to perceived developmental risks, difficulties and disturbances, and more than a third, in a short period of monitoring, showed progress in development.

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