A girl shows her painting at children's village Ben Tre…
I found this story to compliment this lovely drawing. It is about another child, elsewhere in Vietnam, in Hai Phong. He is now an art student. Here he remembers his childhood days at SOS Children's Village. This is his story:
A girl shows her painting at children's village Ben Tre in Vietnam.
I found this story to compliment this lovely drawing. It is about another child, elsewhere in Vietnam, in Hai Phong. He is now an art student. Here he remembers his childhood days at SOS Children's Village. This is his story in his own words.
"Ten years have gone by, but I still remember that morning when my uncle told me that someone from SOS Children's Village Hai Phong would come to take me away. I was an orphan and was living with a sick uncle who had financial problems.
The local authorities had asked for me to be cared for at the SOS Children's Village Hai Phong. Although my uncle was unable to take care of me, I couldn't imagine leaving him. He had brought me up until then.
Some days later my uncle took me to SOS Children's Village Hai Phong.
The house where I was to live was at the far end of the village. I was greeted at the door by a woman with a smile on her face. She welcomed me into the house. All my SOS brothers and sisters followed us.
I had a wonderful childhood from that moment. For the first time I experienced the joy of going to school without worrying about not having textbooks or exercise books.
I was able to go to drawing classes and had plenty of drawing books and pencils.
At that time, the SOS School did not exist (the SOS Primary and Secondary School opened in Hai Phong in September 2000); so my SOS brothers and sisters went to a primary school quite far from the SOS Children's Village.
My SOS mother took them to school every day. Her caring nature had a deep impact on me and inspired me to paint her portrait. I gave that picture the title "Mother fetching children from school in the rain".
The painting was sent as an entry in the art competition held to mark the 50th anniversary of SOS Children's Villages. My picture won first prize.
This very much encouraged me and I painted many more pictures. I received awards for some of them in national and municipal competitions.
At present, I am in my third year as an art student. Ten years have passed, but I still remember the first day when my mother took my hand and went into the house with me."
The inside of a house that recieves SOS family support in Sofia Bulgaria.
This is a story about two women who provide family support in Bulgaria. It gives a good insight into their work and what life is like in Bulgaria:
Mariana and Zvezdelina, the two SOS co-workers who provide family support in Gabrovo, are experienced social workers. Their work begins when families are identified as at risk of being separated from their children.
"In reality, parents often find themselves lost in the complicated social system," explains Zvezdelina. Many are unaware of the benefits they are entitled to. So, Mariana and Zvezdelina often accompany parents visiting different institutions to claim their rights.
In a small community outside the capital Sofia, a family of six struggles for bare survival in front of the eyes of the social services.
Svetla lives in an unfinished two storey house where only one room is inhabitable. Both she and her husband are unemployed. Svetla's eldest daughter wasn't enrolled to secondary school and her two middle children didn't attend nursery school. The youngest, a baby, slept on a lumpy couch as cradles were too expensive.
When Svetla's case became known to "It took minutes to realize that their needs are great". This is where the partners of the programmes come in. Schooling for the children, counselling and medical care were given free of charge.
The support to each family in the programme is regulated with a contract which clarifies the roles and responsibilities of both parties. Family development plans are compiled and goals are agreed jointly. In average it is forecast that each family would be supported for three years.
But, an important element which can not be found in the reports and evaluations are the small moments of human closeness and unselfish generosity that give hope, enthusiasm.
For privacy reasons, the names of the people in the family we helped have been changed.