The message reads, in part:
“The state’s social protection system has a long history that has earned deep respect. Peter the Great’s decree of June 8, 1701 laid the foundations for this system. Under the decree, Russia was to establish facilities to take care of sick and elderly poor people.
Today, the social system has many responsible tasks. Homes for veterans and boarding houses, social service organisations and centres for assisting families and children employ various professionals: specialists on social services and rehabilitation, teachers, psychologists, medical workers and lawyers. All of them have one thing in common – mercy, personal involvement and sincere concern for those who simply cannot do without assistance. For many of your wards, you have become truly close people rather than just irreplaceable assistants.
It is gratifying that in the past few years, NGOs and volunteers have been befittingly carrying out the noble mission of social patronage along with government institutions.
I am grateful to everyone who works in the social protection and social services system, for their selfless labour, patience and generosity.”