Add a comment
On December 6th Kalinovka had a joined visit by the Foundation employees, Deputy Head of Children's Home in Velikiy Lug, Head of children's section of Kirovsk Foster Home and Head of Department of Labour and Social Security of the Zaporozhye region I.V.Meshan. The topic of a discussion was a possibility of moving back to Zaporozhye the severely ill immobile kids who require assistance that is hard to provide elsewhere in the region. By spring we plan to find the way not to send children to die any longer, since it’s easier to get access to medical help in the regional capital as opposed to a remote village.
A definitive proof of difference in quality of care is a death of Nastya from Kalinovka, who died at the intensive care unit the very next day after our meeting. The girl was obviously very ill but perhaps she would live longer in Zaporozhye... Apart from Nastya two more children died in Kalinovka in 2012: Nadya who had a brain tumor following an operation and Zhenya who faced severe epileptic seizures. For the last few years the death rate in Kalinovka has undoubtedly reduced, but it shouldn't prevent all of us from helping children with special needs live a long and happy life in their own way, and not just spend their years in exile.
On December 15th Kalinovka was yet again visited by the volunteers from Energodar. They brought a massive Christmas tree, it was so large that part of it had to be removed - the ceiling happened to be too low. Also volunteers brought fruit and sweets, paints, glue, pencils, plasticine, multi-coloured paper, rubbish bags, soft toys and pens. This time volunteers from Energodar were accompanied by a small group of students of Social Work from Berdyansk, maybe they will be willing to do an internship at the Children's Home in the future.
In December students from Dneprorudnoye village collected six boxes of stationary for the Kalinovka kids. The pupils from "Talent" school sent plasticine, books, pens and pencils to Kalinovka.
Before the New Year's Day Kalinovka, like other child's homes of the region, was visited by many guests bearing gifts. In particular, on behalf of children from the Children's Home and "Happy Child" charity foundation we would like to express sincere gratitude to Yylia Dotsenko from Kiev, who, armed by the list of items required by Kalinovka, managed to purchase ten boxes with stationary and toys - funded by The Coca-Cola Company.
Yulia also brought a bag of children’s socks to Kalinovka. Also, thanks to Yulia’s collaboration with Nestle, the Children’s Home received 96 cans of “Peptamen” protein food which is now regularly given to three children and we expect the stocks will last for at least two months.
We’re grateful to Yulia for purchasing vitamins for Kalinovka and her Christmas visit to the Children’s Home on December 24th! On that day Yulia arrived from Kiev and we with The Coca-Cola Company employees Roman and Ivan went to greet children in Kalinovka. Unexpectedly, one of Coca-Cola employees had to dress up as Santa and caused a lot of excitement when children were unable to identify their usual “Santa” who had previously been impersonated by the Deputy Head of the Home for many years. Special thanks goes to “Coca-Cola” for that and also for the stock of water and juice which made children’s festive season happy.
Thanks to Olga from London (interpreter of the documentary about Kalinovka) we were contacted by a local journalist Natalya who is already interpreting “Ukrane’s Forgotten Children” documentary. We hope that in 2013 Ukrainian viewers will also have a chance to watch this film, and will start donating and helping children and adults with special needs. Or at least they will become more aware and will realise that there are many people around who are different, but are actually the same, with their own joys and sorrows.
In December an American website about orphans with special needs published four profiles of Kalinovka children, one of these also appeared on our own website - a profile of Nikolai who looks much younger than he really is.
In December the second Happy Home was still being constructed in Kalinovka, most probably the work will be stopped until spring due to weather conditions.
Last month we signed a Technical Supervision Agreement and obtained a “go ahead” to begin the construction of the Happy Home-2. Also in December we received a present for Catholic Christmas, a donation of $8,000 from Diana Britten for the construction of the second Happy Home in Kalinovka. We are hopeful that this donation will enable us to build a complete roof as early as in spring. Right now we are also looking for a roofer. The builder who built the first “Happy Home” roof has given us a quote already.
December brought us a donation of 2,974 hryvnyas (approximately 364 US dollars) from Oliver and Lilia (Switzerland). We are very grateful to them for their help!
And, finally, also in December: thanks to Victoria, Deputy Head of the Foster Home in Velikiy Lug, Kalinovka received several educational books about working with disabled children and adults. We hope that these methodical recommendations will make the job of educators in Kalinovka easier and will help them equip the kids who can be taught with the basic life skills.
Educators Work Report:
Raisa G. told us that in her group Oleg P. started to talk, he whispers some of the words but his speech is comprehensible. The problem Raisa has in her group is that kids constantly break the toys they are given.
Valentina K. spent December learning Christmas poems and songs which children were reciting on St. Nicholas Day (19th Dec) and also when various Santas and Snow Maidens visited throughout the month. Now kids started learning Orthodox Christmas carols. Valentina K. reads the ABC book and Masha and the Bear book with children. In the same group Sofia S. teaches them how to use the computer – in particular, Sasha Z. is trying to play simple games whereas Artyom N. and Seryozha P. are still learning to type using the PC. Sofia is constantly teaching children how to turn the computer on and off properly, so it can be used again.
In a group of Olga M. Sasha T. hands over the toys on request and stretches his hand out for a handshake. Igor S. is learning to talk with the help of his educator.
Natasha P. had drawing lessons in her group and also prepared for Christmas with her children. For example, Larisa K. managed to learn as many as three poems and one song, and Katya A. learned one song. With the help of their educator, Misha M. and Yulia L. are continuing to learn to walk unaided. Yulia L. learned body parts with her educator – now she can demonstrate her knowledge by pointing at herself and naming them.
The current needs of the Child’s Home (1.02.2012)
1. building materials for the second Happy Home
2. figures for moulding in plaster
3. wire 4mm in diameter
4. acrylic paints
6. check canvas for beading
7. CDs with cartoons, fairy-tales, Soviet era children’s movies
8. handouts – prints
9. sticky tape
10. large or medium puzzles
11. flowers net
12. flower pots stand
13. woollen socks
14. musical toys
15. rubber and plastic toys
We would like to thank everyone who has helped Children’s Home in Kalinovka. Please continue to support children with special needs – they need your help more than anyone else in the world!