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15-year old girl at the head of For Our Children Foundation.. for a day

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The 15-year old girl from Plovdiv – Elena Staneva, who is among the 13 winners of the contest “Ambassador for one day”, yesterday and today took the place of the Executive Director of “For Our Children” Foundation – Ivanka Shalapatova. Even though it was just for a day, Elena saw the world through the eyes of Ms. Shalapatova – she had the chance to feel her spirit and see her motivation that has inspired her to lead a non-governmental organization, working in the social sphere, for 20 years. Elena also saw the meaning of her professional life – the smiles of children, the happy families and the changed human faiths.   The experiences we prepared for Elena started yesterday. Her host was our team from the Community Support Center “For children and parents” in her hometown. Our colleagues surprised Elena with a workshop for martenitsi and spring cards, which they created together for the families and children we work with in Plovdiv.   Today we welcomed Elena in Sofia, where we introduced her to our team and told her about the work of the Community Support Center “St. Sofia” and the “Foster Care Center”. Our social workers, psychologist and family therapist told her about their profession and their super powers – how they help children at risk and their families to overcome the difficulties.   In order to get closer to our social work, we took Elena to meet with one of the families, that the team of the Community Support Center “St. Sofia” supported so that the family can stay together – that of Dobromir, who didn’t leave his home for nearly two years because of trauma during his childhood. The girl talked with the mother and the son, they told her about the help they received from our team in their toughest moments and about the joy, which they felt when Dobi finally decided to go leave the house, after so much time.   After the meeting the Ganevi family, Elena also visited our Family Type Placement Center “Family house”. There, together with H.E. Sri Astari Rasjid – The Indonesian Ambassador to Bulgaria, our Executive Director – Ivanka Shalapatova, our team and the babies that we are taking care of now, she met Baba Marta. With a lot of smiles and good mood we gave martenitsi to the children for health and wished them to, very soon, have their own families to spend these sunny holidays with.   Charged with lots of emotions from the meeting with the babies, the three ladies spent the afternoon with other women from “For Our Children” Foundation, who shared a piece of their work and experience, told them about their personal and professional dreams, and encouraged Elena to pursue hers without stopping, despite all the challenges that may come her way.   The day for the young girl doesn’t end here. Tonight, Elena and her family, will be guests at the Indonesian embassy, where they will enjoy the exotic culture and cuisine of this country in the company of H.E. Sri Astari Rasjid, her team and Ms….

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For Our Children Foundation launches a campaign for the 8th of March in support of children, devoid of maternal love

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In the month of the woman, the mother and the spring, “For Our Children” Foundation launches a charity campaign for the 8th of March in support of children, devoid of maternal love. Every day in Bulgaria at least two children are separated from their biological parents. 90% of these are babies under 1 year of age. The purpose of the campaign is to provide baby formula, diapers and purees for those children, who have no one to turn to with “mom”, who have no one to thank to for the warm care.   We turn to you – people who believe that every child has the right to grow up in a happy and beloved family. Everyone can help for this dream to come true. The good is in your hands. Even with a donation from a pack of diapers, the fate of a child changes!   The flowers are lovely, they are almost as beautiful as the amazing women you love and greet for their holiday. Flowers give beauty and freshness, but not for a long time. The good that mothers and women teach us in life, leaves a trace and ignites good-doing.   Instead of a beautiful bouquet of flowers or a luxurious box of chocolates for your beloved wife and mother, donate a pack of diapers, baby formula, baby purees, or the amount you would have given for a gift, in support of those children who don’t have families. The donated funds will be used to purchase the same supplies needed in the care of a newborn during the first months of his or her life.   You can support the most vulnerable children by bringing diapers (all sizes), baby formula 1 and 2, and/or baby purees (fruit, vegetable, with meat) in one of the centers of For Our Children Foundation, or donate your amount online through our site detebg.org or by bank transfer – IBAN: BG 32 RZBB 9155 1060 5337 67.   You can find us at: – Community Support Center “St. Sofia” – Sofia, 21, Gyueshevo Str. – Family Type Placement Center “Family House” – Sofia, 2, Ohridsko ezero Str. – Community Support Center “For Children and Parents” – Plovdiv, 21, Maritsa Blvd.   The campaign will continue until March 15. The collected donations and funds will be announced on the Foundation’s website and Facebook page on March 19.   P.S. If you support our initiative, you can download and customize a card from down below to bring it to your beloved wife or…

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110 children at an early age were not abandoned, thanks to the Community Support Center “For Children and Parents”

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Secure family environment for every child   125 children and families at risk of separation received support from the team of For Our Children Foundation in Plovdiv in 2018. 15 were the cases the Community Support Center “For Children and Parents” worked on in the past year under the program “Preventing separation of newborn children from their families”. We saved 7 babies from a life in an institution, who are now enjoying family comfort and warmth in a foster family.   Our team also works hard under the program “Prevention of separation – family support for safe care”, which targets families are at risk of abandoning their child. We visit many families, go to the so-called “risky” neighborhoods in order to identify potential problems on time, we speak with current and future parents, we give advice and help where it is necessary. This way we manage to reach more children and families, who need help, and support them, so they can stay together. We worked with 110 children and their families under this program. These are families, who face different challenges in their daily lives – families living in poverty, parents of children with disabilities, large families and others. None of them abandoned their child.   Through our family support program, our team in Plovdiv also worked with 2 children, who live with their relatives; 8 children, victims of violence; 14 children dropping out or at risk of dropping out of school; 4 children with tough behavior.   We also supported 7 children and their families in the process of reintegration.   Better life for a child in need   Last June we launched the joint project “Better life for a child in need” with the “International Women’s Club-Sofia” Foundation. In just half a year, 6 children who have developmental difficulties progressed significantly in their physical, mental and emotional development. Apart from the opportunity to visit innovative therapies, the children also received the support of specialists – speech therapist, hydro- and hypo-therapist and “Early Childhood Intervention” specialist.   We also worked with another 12 children with special needs and their parents under the program “Early Childhood Intervention”. Or specialists prepared individual exercise programs for the children, that would help them acquire important new skills and develop their potential, and would enable their parents to stimulate the activity of their children even at home.   Support for every parent   The organized courses for parenting skills by The Community Support Center “For Children and Parents” continued to enjoy high level of interest and attendance. Over the past year we conducted 26 parenting skills courses, which attracted 144 future and current mothers and fathers. We also trained 11 prospective adoptive families.   Thanks to our “Care at early age” project 123 parents and 29 children received support at the “University Multi-profile Hospital for Active Treatment – Plovdiv”, where a specially formed multidisciplinary team, consisting of a psychologist, “Early Childhood Intervention” specialist, “Early Child Development” specialist and rehabilitator provided consultations and trainings under an internationally validated methodology.   For the team of the Community Support Center “For Children and Parents” the childhood in a secure family environment is a cause, and their work is dedicated to the children, to the good, to the future and to hope. Our purpose is to guarantee safe and secure environment for the children – purpose to which we dedicated the last 27…

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We saw off the work-week with a workshop for martenitsi

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Today in For Our Children Foundation, we were preparing for one of the most beloved Bulgarian holidays – Baba Marta. In order to show us their skills in making martenitsi, we had as our guests some of the foster families, which we support. Together, we used our imagination in the process of making these unique red and white creations of yarn. With these bracelets, we are going to bring happiness to the children and the families we work with.   The workshop is just a small part of the activities, which we plan to organize with the funds, provided by the “Choose to help” charity initiative of our partners from Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria. This is the fifth consecutive year in which we get support from the financial institution and this year the project with which we took part in the initiative, was dedicated to foster care. In 2019 we are planning to give an opportunity to the foster parents we work with to take part in courses to upgrade their skills. This way they will be even more successful in the care for children and more motivated to dedicate their professional path to this tough mission. As a part of the project “Foster Care – Security, Development and Happiness for Vulnerable Children” we foresee different socializing activities and events for the foster children. These activities are going to spark their curiosity and expand their horizons.   Our partnership with Raiffeisenbank dates back to 2009 and ever since then they have supported many different projects of ours, totaling to about 70 000 BGN, through the “Choose to help” charity initiative. Thanks to our sustainable partnership with the bank, the responsiveness and the good hearts of its employees, we manage to reach many more families and children, who face challenged every day.   Since the creation of For Our Children Foundation 27 years ago, its team has supported more than 12 800 children and their families, with over 1 600 just in the past…

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1 600 children and families trusted on For Our Children Foundation through the last year

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In 2018 For Our Children Foundation continued to work for every child in Bulgaria to live in a safe family environment. The organization’s team believes that only the family can give a stable basis to the child and only in the family can the child get an equal chance and enjoy a complete life.   Nearly 1 600 children and families trusted For Our Children Foundation only in the past year. Our experts worked with over 1 400 children and families in our Community support centers in Sofia, Plovdiv, our Foster Care Center and Family Type Placement Center “Family House“. 1 314 children in biological, adoptive and extended families used our services and expertise, 53 children found love and care in 36 foster families, which we support, and 11 babies welcomed their first months in the comfort and warmth of the “Family House”.   Prevention of separation and reintegration   In 2018 our team worked more 340 cases of prevention of child abandonment. Thanks to the dedication and professionalism of our social workers, we saved 298 children at an early age from separation with their family. We helped newborns and their families, large families, families living in poverty, parents with disabilities or dependencies, families with children who have disabilities or health problems, and also premature babies and their families.   Through our programs for family support, we also worked with 8 children living with relatives; 15 adopted children and their families; 11 children, victims of violence; 15 children at risk of dropping out of school and 12 children with difficult behavior.   We supported 60 children and families in process of reintegration.   Socialization activities and trainings   144 children were involved in various socialization activities – theatrical productions, puppet theater, baby opera, excursions and outings, picnics in the nature and others. While they were having fun and playing, the children learned how to communicate, how to share and they built a stronger emotional relationship with the people who took care of them.   Over the past year, our free parenting skills courses continued to enjoy great interest and attendance. Our experts trained 105 prospective adopters who are now ready to give a second chance for a loving home to many children. For the foundation’s team a very important part of working with parents is the early identification of problems and challenges, related to the care of children, and support for coping with them on time. This includes support for parents even before the birth of their child. In 2018, we held 40 parenting skills classes, attended by 227 future and current mothers and dads.   One of the distinctive reasons why we are a preferred service provider, is the high level of quality and expertise of our team. Our belief is that specialists must regularly update and build on their knowledge, in order to be better at supporting children and families. In 2018 we supported 91 specialists with a variety of trainings, with which they increased their competencies.   Results   The support to biological and adoptive families which the foundation provides according to an internationally established methodology, has a positive impact on children – that’s what the researches of our services point out. As a result of our work, 115 of the estimated 176 children showed positive change, their parents take the necessary care of them and meet their needs adequately. The parents of 61 of the children still need us. We worked hard to build an emotional relationship between the parents and their children. 139 children at risk of abandonment remained in their own families.   For 27 years we have supported over 12,800 children and families at risk. Because every child must have a…

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Kids created more than 400 unique martenitsi For Our Children

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Two weeks before March 1st, also known as “Baba Marta”, our office was filled with fresh mood by the bracelets, created with lots of love and energy, called martenitsi. More than 400 unique martenitsi were made by third-grade students from 105 “Atanas Dalchev” High School in Sofia, with the invaluable support of their parents and inspired by the unstoppable enthusiasm of their class teacher – Eli Georgieva.   Martenitsi, entirely in the spirit of the Bulgarian tradition, refracted through the individual vision of the kids and their mothers, will be offered to bazaars or they will be redeemed for charity from corporative donors of the foundation, in order to make their customers happy.   We are thankful to the students and their teacher, and to all of the parents, for their trust, friendship and their gesture of empathy to the destinies of the children and families, which we support. “When next to every good being, stands at least one more”, the chain of good, faith and hope…

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A foster mom: I became wiser after raising 5 children

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Galina Angelova is a teacher by education, happily married, mother of two teenage daughters and works at a big trading company. Her life is obviously successful. This is why everyone was amazed when she left her well-paid job to stay at home and take care of a baby. Furthermore, a child that is not hers but “foreign” – she become a foster…

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For Our Children Foundation with a research on the support services for children with developmental issues in Plovdiv

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“For our children Foundation” and the Institute for – Bulgarian Academy of Science, as part of the project “Let it shine”, with the financial support of the “Trust for social achievement” Foundation, organized a poll amongst parents regarding the support to children with difficulties in growth and disabilities, aged up to 3, in…

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“This Christmas you make the miracles” raised 50 000 lv. in support of happy childhood in families

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Yesterday on a thanksgiving meeting with the participants in the “This Christmas you make the miracles” 2018, “For Our Children” Foundation announced the results from the charity campaign.   The initiative’s sixth edition inspired employees of 53 small and large socially responsible companies, schools, preschools, educational centers, a media group, dance schools, a health lifestyle club, a circle of friends and even a retirement club to give a chance for happy childhood to hundreds of children. Together we imperceptibly managed to raise the record-breaking amount of 50 000 leva which the Foundation will utilize to support children and families at risk, will address the specific requirements of  children with developmental issues and will help them realize their full potential.   “We couldn’t manage what we do without your support. 60% of the financial provision come from donations. You give us the stability and certainty that help us follow our mission for 26 years already. Thanks to you we supported 1300 children and families last year”, pointed out in front of the guests Galq Gecova, director of the department “Corporate and individual partnerships and Communications” at “For Our Children” Foundation.   During the last few weeks the teams in the office organized with great excitement and a strong Christmas spirit a variety of initiatives supporting the foundation’s causes – some of them danced, others spent the day wearing pajamas, or competing in a race with chairs on wheels and in arm wrestling with ski gloves. The most favorite amongst the initiatives were the Christmas lunch and Christmas bazaar.   “Dear friends, I would like to tell you that the kids we supported might never meet us, might never tell us how we changed their lives, but thanks to us they will always believe in the good in people. Thank you for reaching out and helping us so that we can make sure more kids grow up in a secure family environment”, shared her thoughts Snezhanka Marinkova, one of the people, “guilty” of accomplishing the campaign this year – senior expert “Organizing campaigns and communications” at the Foundation. Touched by her words all the participants shared the initiative has brought them together as a team and as people united in a significant and excited cause. Some of the teams expressed their opinion regarding the event describing it as the brightest and the most fun one for the past year and they can’t wait to take part in other campaigns, organized by the Foundation. They really got to know the people whom they work with and discovered newfound creative abilities in themselves. An occasion for jokes and unforgettable common memories the campaign is still a topic of conversation in the teams.   For yet another year the “This Christmas you make the miracles” campaign united colleagues and friends, woke up their Christmas mode, bound them with a cause and proved that doing good is not only easy but can also be a lot of fun. And most importantly, it made it possible for dozens of children to feel the magic of spending their holidays in a family…

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For our children” Foundation donated equipment to “St. Petka” Complex for social-health services in Plovdiv

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31 children and adolescents with severe and multiple disabilities, patients of the social-health comlex “St.Petka” in Plovdiv now enjoy the new and innovative equipment – hydromassage bathtub, bath column and massage bed. It was bought by “For Our Children” Foundation with the financial support from the “I play and dream” project and it’s entirely free for the patients of the…

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For Our Children foundation organized a “How to cope with stress” training for fifth graders from Rogosh village

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Our team from the Community Support Center “For Children and Parents” organized a training for coping with stress for fifth graders from primary school “Vasil Levski” in Rogosh. The aim was the kids to learn to recognize everyday stress and along with us to find a way to build skills to overcome it   The training was organized in the form of a game activity and all students participated in a series of challenges. The most important task for them was to form into groups and create collages, picturing anxiety and concern, and present them in front of their peers.   The students got acquainted with the types of stress and symptoms but the topic was mostly dedicated to the everyday stress and all those little things that keep us awake and accompany us during our daily lives. The head teachers took part in the session contributing to an active participation during the tasks. Kids pointed out a lot of different reasons for increasing the stress levels. They managed to define some of their suggestions as more serious and some as easier to cope with and not so stressful. The kids came to the conclusion that different thing that happen to us may have a different impact on each one of us. Amongst the described stress sources are things like exams at school, unresolved tasks, loneliness, accident, loss of a close relative, penalties and even house work.   Our team encouraged the kids to think about what could help them at times when they are tense and anxious. For most of the children riding a bike, listening to music, a friendly hug, walks in the park, books, movies and games, and also conversations with friends, are ways in which they deal with stress.   In the feedback participants shared the event was really interesting and will eagerly await our next activity, which we will dedicate to conversations about friendship.     We thank the management and staff of the school “Vasil Levski” for the trust and the active participation. We will be working with other students from grade 2 to 7 and with our combined effort we would like to encourage kid’s activity and participation in the work process and in sharing topics important for our daily…

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“GDPR Training Organized For Us By Our Friends From “Penkov-Markov & Partners”

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Today, the Foundation’s team were pleased to expand their knowledge of the General Data Protection Regulation, proper data storage and destruction, thanks to the specially organized training provided by the Penkov-Markov and Partners Law Firm. This knowledge is important to us because it will guarantee the data security of both our donors and the children and families we…

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For Our Children Foundation is one of the organizations participating in the initiative “Ambassador for a day”

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The initiative “Ambassador for a day” organized for the second year in a row to celebrate March 8th, the international woman’s day, has been presented on a press conference today by the British Ambassador H.E. Emma Hopkins, the Vice President of the Republic of Bulgaria Iliana Yotova and the CEO of the For Our Children…

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Children from Fusion Academy in support of their peers

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For many years one of the leading academies in the sphere of education and art, Fusion Academy and “For Our Children” foundation work together in the name of the right of every child to grow safe, loved, and happy. The team of Fusion Academy believes that there is no such thing as a talentless child but in order to spark that talent, we need to provide the child with opportunities to express themselves and to develop – an understanding, which we also share. They share that art is not fixed value. Art is an impact, a change for the better, love, family. To be an artist you have to be a human most of all. To carry kindness in you, to look for the beauty in the world, to recreate it, to give and gift it to the people. To be an artist, you have to be able to work in a group, to be tolerant, to feel your partner, to be synchronized with the ensemble. They create together and change people, who know their…

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Children create “For Our Children”

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Today is a special day – on the one hand, a day of solidarity, and according to Bulgarian customs and traditions, is Ignazhden. This is why we are very glad that оn a day like this we crossed the threshold of “Azbuki” private school and we were guests of the little good-doers of 3A and 3B class. We met with them, their teachers and parents, to say a great thank you to the series of initiatives they organized together with their teachers and parents in support of the foster children, which “For Our Children” foundation takes care of. They were motivated by their own pure desire to make sure that these children will have toys just like theirs. They sincerely wished them to have a real family and “all be…

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The National Council for Child Protection approved the new Strategy for the child

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At a meeting yesterday, the National Council for Child Protection approved the project of the new National strategy for the child 2019 – 2030. “For Our Children” foundation actively participated in the process of drafting the strategy and the Executive director Mrs. Ivanka Shalapatova presented the position of the foundation as well as of the National network for children at the…

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Santa Claus came to visit the nice children who “For Our Children” foundation support

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With a lot of excitement and smiles we welcomed the long-awaited Santa Claus and her helper Snow White to our celebrations at our Foster Care Center, Community Support Center “St. Sofia”, and Family Type Placement Center “Children’s House”. The white-bearded old man surprised the children with a big and heavy sack in which there was something for every nice child. Our Christmas celebrations turned into a real pleasure not only for the young, but for the old too, under the sounds of loved children’s Christmas songs to which children and all adults joyfully sang, danced, and entertained. The children also had many treats while they were unleashing their creative talent as painting drawings which our colleagues had prepared specially for…

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We surprised the children in Plovdiv with two Christmas celebrations

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The team of our Community Support Center “For Children and Parents” in the city of Plovdiv surprised the children, with whom it works, with a magical Christmas celebration. To make the holiday even more memorable, our helpers were animators from the “Hand” Theatre and, of course, Santa Claus and Snow White. For the children we prepared musical games and specially selected presents, they had a lot of fun and were excited by the meeting with the white-bearded old man whom some of them met for the first time. In addition, the children drew, danced, went through the snowstorm and collected beautiful snowflakes, sharing their most cherished…

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Sofia municipality rewarded “For Our Children” foundation and “Citibank – Bulgaria” for social partnership with business

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The first “Annual awards for good practices in the field of social services” took place last night on the initiative of Sofia municipality. “For Our Children Foundation” received 5 awards, among which a first place for “Social partnership with business” for its collaboration with “Citibank – Bulgaria…

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Petya Yanachkova with a prize “Warrior of the year” from the annual awards of Sofia municipality

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Fight, dedication, professionalism, experience, competency, impressive results.   These are only some of the reasons why the family consultant at the Community Support Center “St. Sofia” PetyaYanachkova was nominated and was awarded in the category “Warrior of the Year” at the first “Annual awards for good practices in the field of social services”, initiated by Sofia municipality.   Petya Yanachkova has been part of the team of the CSC “St. Sofia” for 6 years and is among its most recognized, searched, and respected members. Apart from high professional competency which she continuously develops and builds up, she also has personal skills and qualities, irreplaceable at her job. These are primarily though cases of parents in conflict and biological families, emotional disorders and children behavior, etc. The full dedication to the work and her ability to create a strong, trustful connection with the clients lead to a successful result even when it looks like there is no exit and solution to the case. To protect the child, to decrease and overcome the effect of the parent alienation, in every situation and case to search for and find the right approach for its physical and psychical sustentation and its best interest, are of main value and meaning in Petya Yanachkova’s work.   Petya is particularly valuable with her expertise in assessing the capacity and the motivation of the parents who have claimed a desire for their child to be reintegrated. Until this moment, there is not a single case of a reintegrated child leaving the family, which she worked with.   As a noted and strongly anticipated expert in the adoptive field, she conducts training sessions for candidates for adopters, participates in the process of adjusting the child and the family. The families which have already adopted a child, continue to stay in touch with Petya, share their excitement with her and look for advice and support. Moreover, she participates in work groups and gives standpoints regarding programs and enactments related to the adoption process.   As part of the team of the CSC “St. Sofia”, Petya is also valued and wanted in the legislative system as a specialist with a high expertise, takes part and drafts standpoints for lawsuits which are regularly written in the Court’s decisions and are taken into account in the decisions of the panel.   With her overall work and dedication in the cause of the child’s best interest, Petya Yanachkova fully deserves to receive the title “Warrior of the year”.   “I am thankful to our clients whom I own this award to, to “For Our Children” foundation which gave me the battle filed I am fighting at, to my family which made me fighting,” shared PetyaYanachkova when received the award from Rumyana Georgieva, chief executive of Agency for Social Assistance.   Apart from this award, “For Our Children” foundation was rewarded with “Social partnership with business” for its partnership with “Citibank Europe plc”, and Mariana Taseva, leader of Foster care center, received a diploma in the category “Most involving and inspiring social service”, Kiril Kirilov, leader of Community Support Center “St. Sofia” in the category “Manager of the year”, RumyanaZlateva in the category “Voluntary cause of the year”.   For the team of “For Our Children” foundation, these awards are an extraordinary recognition and all of us are happy that Sofia municipality recognizes the need of such kind of encouragement of the people in the serving sector who, unfortunately, are often…

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Our good practices in support to our colleagues in Macedonia

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Specialists from the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy of Macedonia, the local branch of UNICEF, leaders of institutions and others were on a work visit to our services in Sofia today. The purpose of this visit was the colleagues from our Southwest neighbor to become acquainted with a successful model of deinstitutionalization of childcare. The initiative was realized with the support of the international marketing and consulting company Junction.   During the meeting, our guests were able to find out more about how we successfully brought all children to a family or close to a family environment at the end of 2016, and closed the home for medical and social care “St. Sofia”, as well as our activities in the field of prevention of abandonment, our work with biological, adoptive and foster families, our services in early childhood intervention. We also told them about our plans to build Early Childhood Development Complexes that will allow us to increase the volume and quality of support for families at risk of separating from their child. In addition to the two complexes in the cities of Sofia and Plovdiv, we also told them about our plans to unveil a high-tech training center in the city of Plovdiv, where we will have trainings for specialists, children, and parents through modern technologies and interactive methods.   At the end of the visit, our colleagues shared that the knowledge they gained would be very useful in the process of closing the only baby institution in Bitola. They expressed their gratitude and hope that we will continue to cooperate in the name of our common goal of closing the entrance to the institutions and making sure that every child lives in a…

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The good exists – and it is in all of (our) volunteers

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Sometimes the most real, the most inspiring actions, the ones with the power to make miracles happen, are left untold.   This is why, on the International Volunteer Day, “For Our Children” foundation talks with gratitude about those people who donate their labor, time, knowledge for more children to feel the love and to have a real childhood. Meet one of them…   She is a volunteer. With a big heart. She is an epitome for a dedicated, motivated, and inspiring person. She devotes her heart to the children and their right to live happily and loved in a safe family environment. She is Rumyana Zlatkova and is part of the team of volunteers who support the Family-type placement center “Children’s House” of “For Our Children” foundation in the care for the babies and in the creation of a feeling for a real family.   Rumyana has been spending time with the babies 3 times of the week, for 2 hours for 3 years. She is extremely positive, always smiling, ready to hug and take care of each of the kids so that they feel loved, calm, and happy. The children can’t wait for her to come, greet her enthusiastically, and reach for a hug, look for the warmth and safety, which she brings and gives them.   Apart from reading tales with pleasure and artistry and gets their attention, Rumyana supports her colleagues from the team by going with them when they go out with the children – for a walk in the park, to a picnic, to a puppet theatre or circus, or when necessary, to the hospital.   The team of the foundation is proud, happy, and grateful that Rumyana has chosen to support us in our mission to make it possible every child to live in a family. She is an example of how goodness, sympathy, and love for children turn into a care for the ones that need them the most to live happily and loved. This is why at the beginning of the month she was nominated by the foundation in the category “Voluntary cause of the year” in the first of its kind “Annual rewards for good practices in the field of social services” of Sofia municipality.   We wish her luck! Because Rumyana is an example of a true hero, a symbol of the good, and her bravery and devotion should be rewarded!       Family-type placement center “Childhood” (Children’s House) started in 2012 with a capacity of the service – 6 children from 0 to the age of 7. To this moment, the service has granted temporary accommodation in a safe family environment to 41 children in total, separated from their families until there is provided a constant and a safe family – biological, relatives, adoptive or…

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New knowledge after the visit at the British Center “Pen Green”

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On November 28 – 29, 2018, representatives from “For Our Children” foundation, together with the chair of the State Agency for Child Protection, Dr. Eleonora Lilova, and experts from the Ministry of Education and Science, the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy, the Ministry of Healthcare, the State Agency for Child Protection, Sofia Municipality, were on a visit at the “Pen Green” Centre for children and their families in Corby, Northamptonshire. The center offers high-quality early education and care for children and their families in the local community and implements a model for integrating those services with the other systems which support early childhood development.   The access to services and their quality are among the main challenges in the areas which are important for the development at early age in Bulgaria, and the development of integrated services is a prerequisite for overcoming the challenges in fighting with poverty and social exclusion in our country. Because of this, the main purpose of this work visit was to build up the knowledge and the capacity of the members of the National strategy for early childhood development, giving them a look at the activity and the successful practices of the colleagues from the United Kingdom.   During the two-day program, the participants had the opportunity to get acquainted with the history of the Center, the approaches to development and integration of the services, the approaches to work with parents and their involvement at the work of the service as well as ways of working at “Pen Green”.   After their return to Bulgaria, they shared that with the knowledge they had acquired, they feel confident in the drafting of a strategic document with a key importance for the country.     The foundation has the opportunity to coordinate and organize the visit thanks to the financial support of the British Embassy in Bulgaria as well as the OAK foundation which finances the project “Care at early age”…

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20 socially responsible companies took part in “This Christmas You Do The Wonders 6”

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Only ten days after the launch of “For Our Children” foundation Christmas campaign, “This Christmas You Do The Wonders“, twenty socially responsible companies took part in it. Their employees are already introducing the festive spirit to the office by organizing entertaining challenges, bringing together everyone with the desire to give a happy Christmas in a family to at least one other child.   The children from the 179 Kindergarden “Sinchets” also decided to help their friends in need. As Christmas dwarfs, they will bring the festive atmosphere into greeting cards, with the charitable sale of which they will raise funds to support the children with which “For Our Children” foundation works.   If you are a socially responsible organization or a company of friends and want to help children at risk and their parents, join our Christmas campaign. Find out more about it on the website and explore the list of challenges that prove that doing good is easy and can be a lot of fun. On the website, you will find a package with the materials necessary for the organization of each of the initiatives.   Help more children experience the magic called family! Claim participation at 088 70 70 268 or charity@detebg.org because This Christmas you do the wonders!   We are thankful to the teams of Britannica; Investor.bg; Kreston Bulmar; ING Bank; Sirma; Club Healthy Living Sun; Research for good; Transpress; Dunapack Rodina; Benefit Systems; Football radar – Plovdiv; Citel; Law Firm Stankov, Todorov, Hinkov, Spasov; AMDOC; Profi Credit; Progress; BLD, who have already stated their involvement. They will participate with Christmas bazaars and lunches, sports entertainment in the office, such as Canadian race with winter gloves, toys, and cards crafting, and…

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About play as means of learning and entertainment discussed specialists from “For Our Children” foundation in Plovdiv

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Workshop on “The play – learning and entertainment” was held yesterday by experts from “For Our Children” foundation with specialists from the Complex for Social Health Services “St. Petka” in the city of Plovdiv. The social workers Vyara Panayotova and Desislava Ilieva from the Community Support Center “St. Sofia” and the senior expert on early childhood development Tsvetelina Ganeva from the Community Support Center “For Children and Parents “ at the foundation talked about the influence of play and its capabilities to develop the child. They drew attention to the differences between the learning play and the play for fun, and with a small workshop, they applied what they learned in practice.     Our experts challenged the specialists from the Complex – to return to their childhood and see toys through the eyes of children, thinking about play simply as a means of entertainment. From the scattered, colorful wooden shapes, animals and numbers, with creativity, they all figured out many more ways to have fun together with children through games and toys. Ways that henceforth the specialists will apply regularly when working with children and parents.     We, from “For Our Children” foundation, believe that after love and security, the play is the best stimulus for a child’s development. The play is the key way that children at early age /0-7 years/ get to know the world and learn. It is not a privilege. It should be part of every child’s childhood to show them the world, develop their abilities, and give them a strong connection with their closest…

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The magic of being a foster parent – an event of “For Our Children” foundation

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Every day children are being abandoned by biological parents, often placed under protection because of violence or lack of parental capacity. Many of these children are accommodated in institutions. Their life there is doomed. The carefree, real childhood for them is just a mirage. They dream about it, but it is so unknown … so far away.   Foster care is the “wizard” who makes their dreams to be happy, to have a family, to be loved and to love, come true.   On December 2 and 6, in the cozy, family environment of our “Children’s House”, the team of “For Our Children” foundation will meet people with different professions and life paths but with one common interest – to get acquainted with foster care as well as with its exemplification – the foster parent who, with a lot of courage and a dream to support the most vulnerable children in Bulgaria, has embarked on this tough adventure.   The idea of these informal meetings emerged in the mind of one of our most dedicated foster parents, Rene Emil, who, for the last two years, has been taking care of Ronnie, a child with difficulties in development.   She and the head of our Foster care center Mariana Taseva will be there to answer all questions, share their experiences, and talk about the children and their needs, their dreams.   If you have ever sought answers to the questions “What happens to children at risk?”, “How do they live?”, “What do they need?”, “What are their dreams?”, and “What can I do”? “Can I be a foster parent?”,  Reni sums up:   “These questions kept me curious for years before I became a foster parent. Now I know the answer to each of them. The family is a window to the future for each child. Without it, it is lost … in the nothingness, and it sinks down day after day until it dips its last dream. I wish I didn’t come to know about the existence of nothing, but it happened. I could not resign. So I made a decision to become a foster parent, to enchant some childhood, to make someone else’s dreams come true, to share my happiness.”   We hope that after this meeting, all people attending will return home with the clear conviction that foster care is the best and most family-friendly alternative for children left without parents. And of course, inspired by the stories we will tell them, they will decide to dedicate themselves to this responsible profession. Profession “Foster parent”.   “I would like to know if there are other people like me? I would like to find them! I would like to believe that there is a family for each child “, says Reneta.   We invite you to share one hour of your time this Sunday /2.12/, between 10:00 and 11:00, OR next Thursday /06.12/, between 17:00 and 18:00, with us and learn more about foster care!   Please confirm your presence at 088 480 4796 or by email at m.taseva@detebg.org: by noon on 30.11 / Friday / for the event on 2.12 by noon on 4.12 / Tuesday / for the event on…

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Exchange of good practices with the British center “Pen Green” organized “For Our Children” foundation

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On November 28th-29th 2018, “For our Children” foundation organized a visit to research good practices in the early childhood development services in Great Britain, which our representatives will take part in, together with the chair of the State Agency for Child Protection Dr. Eleonora Lilova and experts from the Ministry of Education and Science, the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy, the Ministry of Healthcare, the State Agency for Child Protection, Sofia municipality.   The visit will be held in the Pen Green Centre for Children and Their Families in Corby, Northamptonshire, which provides a high-quality early education and cares for children and their families in the local community and implements a model for integrating those services together with the other systems which support early childhood development. The center also secures services for information and support through home visits, group work, health interventions, education and training for elders as well as professional development, training, and disseminating of good practices through a base of researches, operations, and training. This practice is assessed as “Extraordinary” or “Excellent” in every inspectorate in the British Office of Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted).   The contemporary understanding of quality services in the field of early childhood development is related to providing integrated services which perceive an inter-sector, holistic approach to the support of children and families. Earlier this year “For Our Children” foundation published the research “Early childhood development in Bulgaria”, which showed that, as the development of integrated services, so the improvement of the quality of the existing sector services is a prerequisite for overcoming the challenges in the field of fighting with poverty and social exclusion in Bulgaria. The access to services and their quality are among the main challenges in the areas which are important for the development in early childhood. Because of this reason, the visit at “Pen Green” aims at building up the knowledge and the capacity on behalf of the Bulgarian interested sides regarding the integrated systems for early childhood, with the purpose of adapting this know-how to the Bulgarian context and piloting in Bulgaria.   The visit is part of the efforts of the foundation to support children at early age and their families and our advocacy for introducing a purposeful, integrated approach towards the state politics in this area. It will support the work of developing the National strategy for early childhood development which runs in the formed workgroup to the Ministry of Education and Science, whose deputy chair is the executive director of “For Our Children” foundation Ivanka Shalapatova.   The foundation has the opportunity to coordinate and organize the visit thanks to the financial support of the British Embassy in Bulgaria as well as the OAK foundation which finances the project “Care at early age”…

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“For Our Children” foundation joined the global movement #GivingTuesday

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There is no season, day or an hour for doing good deeds. They have to happen without us expecting anything in return. Despite this, the date November 27th carries a special charge – then the power of good is even more taking and our generosity – limitless. On this day we mark #GivingTuesday, most famous in the USA, where the term was first coined.   #GivingTuesday is a global initiative, and since 2018 foundation BCause is an official partner of the movement for Bulgaria. This year “For Our Children” foundation joins the world movement and calls to celebrate generosity and humanity by giving.     Join us! Become part of the big charity community of “For Our Children” foundation. Let’s together make it possible for more children to live in a safe and developing family environment!   This is how to do it: 1. Send an SMS to the short donation number 17 777 with text DMS DETSTVO. This single act turns everyone into a partner and a donor of the most important right of every child – to have a family. 2. Become an AMBASSADOR of generosity and solidarity! Share on your Facebook the post of “For Our Children” foundation with a text “I DONATED For Our Children! WHAT ABOUT YOU?”, and don’t forget the hashtags – #GivingTuesday and #GivingTuesdayBulgaria 3. Invite at least three of your friends to become part of the good deed and to convey it forward.   Let more people know about this global initiative and together fulfill hundreds of children’s dreams! Because we believe that the small donations have the power to make big dreams come true.     #GivingTuesday evolves as a reaction to “Black Friday” which becomes more and more popular here, in Bulgaria. The initiative is the alternative to the pointless acquisition of useless things, which, with mutual efforts, we replace with the gesture of donation, which has the power to change human…

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