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CARe Ambassador in Croatia Rijeka

Martina Baiocco

Social worker, University Specialist of Health Promotion and prevention of addiction

Hearing Voices Group facilitator

Director of Home for Adults Turnić in Rijeka, Croatia

I worked as a social worker in the Center for Social Wellfare in Rijeka, mainly with people with mental and intellectual challenges, for almost 10 years. After that, I had the experience of working in the Ministry, monitoring the work of professionals in the social welfare system.

From 2012, I am the head of The Home for Adults Turnić in Rijeka, a provider of social services for people with mental health challenges.

From 2017, I am the responsible person for ESF project “Prilika” throughout which the institution is developing new community service and  strengthening the capacities of the professionals.

During the 6 years period, the institution has been partly Di-ed and has opened 8 community houses. Besides that, the daily care service has been established successfully. The newest established service is the psychosocial support service for individuals and groups.

The Home has also developed the peer support groups, especially Hearing Voices Groups.

Under the guidance of Home Turnić, the NGO “Support” has been established in Rijeka, with the main goal to support the family members of people with mental health issues.

Other important activity is the organisation of Mentalfest- The Festival of Mental Health together with all local stakeholders involved in mental health as partners. The Mentalfest has become tradition and it is an event that lasts for the whole week with very rich program.

The Project is going to enable us also a lot of creative activities: printing of “The Cookbook for the independent Living” and a 60 minutes documentary film about our transformation and new lives of our clients.


2017 has been a year with many success stories for us. Our radio show that goes on for a year now has won the biggest national journalists prise for the best radio-show of the year from the Croatian Journalists Society.


Together with all important local stakeholders, we organized the second Mentalfest – The Festival of Mental Health. During the week from 9th to 14th October, we organized a lot of different activities in Rijeka. We also organized 2 days users conference with the participation of 'experts by experience' from Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Slovenia, Italy, and Croatia, with all costs covered by our donors.


We also continue our collaboration with the Psychiatric Hospital Lopača whose psychiatrists take care of our clients. In a particular way, Dr. Dragan Lovrović is our Community Psychiatrists and goes to our community houses.


In everything we do, we try to make our people become citizens and return their dignity taken from them during the years of life in the institution. Connecting with schools, University, kindergarten, NGO’s and other local stakeholders help us become accepted.


Updates by Martina Baiocco


Mentalfest and The Home for Adults Turnić, Rijeka


On October 5th, Dom Turnić signed the contract for the European Social Fund project called „The Chance“. Through that project, in the period of three years, we are going to develop new community services: opening 9 new community flats, organize individual and group psychosocial support in the institution and in families, employ new professionals and enable them an education.


CARe Ambassador in Croatia Rijeka

Alenka Vondra Butigan

Studied Occupational Therapy at 

Zdravstveno veleučilište Zagreb

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