We all walk our path and pass people and destinies that we cannot understand if we do not immerse ourselves in them. We do not ask ourselves the question: What happens to children raised in institutions? Where are they today? What is their fate and what happens to their children? After leaving the institutions, these people become invisible, uninteresting and lose the support of society. The story I want to present starts from an alley in a large city area.
The smiling mother takes her three children, whom she picked up from kindergarten and school. The children are happy because they have a home, a family and they know that they can count on Hope and Homes for Children – Bulgaria. But this has not always been the case.
Our acquaintance with the young mother began after she and the children’s father managed to get two of their children back after they were forcibly taken to an institution.
Asya and her brother grew up in institutions, their mother leaves them to be raised there because she thinks this is best for two of her four children. Their childhood is associated with moving from institution to institution, daily problems with peers, lack of many things and despair. She even stops dreaming because her horizons are quite limited. And when she is on the edge of despair, after the brutal treatment of her peers and mental harassment, people from NGO come to the institution. These people are different, interesting and bring hope to the child’s heart. They support her to study, show her how to prepare food, take care of clothes, shoes and scarce finances. After graduating from school, she meets the love she dreamed of and the desire to have a child and a family makes her happy. She gives birth to a beautiful girl – Zori and thinks that she has achieved her dreams. The man, her great love, starts beating her, harassing her for no reason, the lack of funds starts and one night after the next beating and threat to the child she escapes with Zori. And she meets Ivan. Zori grows happy under the roof of Ivan, who shelters them. He is caring, kind and works to provide them with everything they need. The man, however, never had identity documents. For our country he does not exist as a person. This is not an obstacle to love and to have a family, but he cannot acknowledge his children. The birth of two girls fills the family with happiness. During this period, Ivan and Asya’s sisters noticed changes in her behavior, at times she was not the same person – she developed schizophrenia, which upsets everyone. During one of the seizures, one of her sisters became enraged and called the social services to pick up the two small children, because Asya would not be able to take care of them. Ivan has no rights over the children and only the eldest child remains with him. Asya is admitted to hospital.
A ghost from the mother’s past returns – her children are in an institution. Who will love them there? Will they survive through her nightmares?
Will she be able to get them back? And more, and more questions.
Ivan and Asya visit the institution every day, see their children and want to get them back, but they do not have suitable accommodation and conditions for raising them. They find housing, convince the CPD that they will be able to create a safe environment for the children and manage to take them home.
Our team, with the assistance of the CPD, helps them to create suitable conditions for children. We help the children to start going to kindergarten and the mother to take the necessary medicines regularly. This family’s dreams are coming true because in addition to material support, our team teaches them how to plan expenses, how to find a job and how important it is to love children and think about their future.
Our goal of preventing these children from re-entering an institution has been achieved, the family is happy and we will step aside soon.