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The March Report on Our Work in the Children’s Home in Kalinovka in 2014

April 17, 2014, 22:50 2447 Author: Maria Semashkina, translated by Anna Oliynyk www.deti.zp.ua Adoption of Sergey who has dreamt about a family of his own for almost 17 years and our regular staff training were the key events which took place in Kalinovka last month

Adoption of Sergey became the most significant development of the last month for the Foundation and for me personally. When I started my work at the Foundation two years ago, I heard about Sergey and his biggest dream of finding a family. Besides, I learned that the boy was the smartest in the orphanage. Then I saw dozens of drawings with notes “Mommy” and “I love”, a dozen of beadworks. I personally got half of them. I witnessed his hesitations and then an almost unbelievable wonder, when his family finally found him. Unfortunately, he will leave Ukraine. Fortunately, his dream came true.

Sergey with his new mother

Sergey with his new father

It was the first time in my life when the tears of happiness were running from my eyes because Sergey found his family. A couple days ago, he already landed in America and even called me using Skype from his new home. After all the years he spent in Kalinovka he was full of excitement telling me about lots of cars on the streets, about how fast his plane was flying and about people with dark skin you can meet when going out for a walk. He also told me the names of all his dogs. A year ago, the boy demonstrated good abilities in memorizing English words, so I hope that he will have no problems with learning the language. Besides, I want to believe that such adoptions will inspire Ukrainians not to lose their hope if a special child is born in their family and maybe one day even dare to take such children to their homes.

Sergey at his mother’s work place

On March 21-22, there was a staff training session held in Kalinovka dedicated to the correction of aggressive behavior among adult students. Besides, there was a master class in decoupage, where our residents together with staff members decorated regular expendable plates with colorful napkins with ornaments. The training session was held by representatives of the Associations of Psychological Therapists of Ukraine, Irina Lubyanitskaya and Yelena Karetnaya.

The results of the training session showed again that to organize full-scale work with people having special needs and psychological peculiarities in our country as a whole and in Kalinovka in particular we catastrophically lack people. And the staff we have sometimes lacks knowledge, efforts and patience to make their work with people under their care effective and productive. Besides, it is difficult to work with people for a person who has unsettled issues in his or her life, so this and future training sessions aim at maximally improving the quality of work and the inner state of our students and instructors. This is not to say about all the other problems in orphanage institutions, including the lack of workshops, sports equipment and motivation from both sides. Step by step, we will try to change the system. Anyway, on behalf of the foundation we would like to thank the instructors from Kyiv and we are looking forward to seeing them back in summer!

In March, we finished construction works in the second Happy Home and now there is already furniture standing there. Unfortunately, paper formalities still do not allow us to open its doors to children, but fortunately we have time to do some fundraising and purchase the lacking furniture and household appliances. In particular, we still need the following items for the second home:

1. Window curtains

2. Blinds

3. 20 chairs

4. TV set

5. DVD player

6. computer

7. microwave

8. kettle

9. refrigerator

10. electric stove

11. iron

12. vacuum cleaner

13. washing machine

Our adult instructor continues working with the students aged 18-40 from eight to five on working days. Some residents do puzzles, some bead, some put construction kits together, others being 25 years of age solve elementary problems or learn to hold objects with their own hands. And even those simple things would not be possible without our sponsors! I would like to underline that after bedridden children are transferred from Kalinovka, only 2 instructors will be left to work with them, and there will be almost no one to work with our adult residents. And now there will be more than a hundred adults there. So we and they need your financial support more than ever. Thank you in advance!

In April, we plan to organize our regular clean-up event together with orphanage workers, residents and maybe volunteers. For this purpose, orphanage workers asked us to give them box trees, chestnut trees, roses, and lime.

Educators’ Work Report:

Lilya who usually does beadworks with children from the Happy Home, also presented cooking classes for the little residents last month. In particular, she made cookies with Artem and Sasha. The boys prepared post-cards for the Eight of March for all female staff workers with the help of Valentina K. from the same building.

Sophia Sh. read the ABC-book with Sergey P. and Artem N. She also did vegetables and puppets using modeling clay with Yura Ch., Maksim B., and Maksim P. Oleg S. learned geometric figures so well, he now even boasts of this fact in his group. Besides, together with Sasha Z. and Artem N. Sophia made a vase from paper tubes, daisies from cotton pads, and more flowers from napkins. Besides, the children constructed a piano, and for this purpose for the first time in their lives they had to learn how to use a needle and cotton. It was a real success, even though some had a desire to leave it all having no more patience.

Together with instructor Larisa, adult residents made an orchid and started making a birch tree during their beading classes.

As for the group of bedridden children, Olga M. managed to teach Olya R., Angela G. and Roma M. to eat and play sitting at the table. Raisa G. taught Angela G. to walk around the playroom. Thanks to the efforts of Olga, Olya R. learned to drink from her cup and thumb through pages of a book. Besides, Raisa taught Varya to eat using her spoon.

The current needs of Kalinovka as of 17 April 2014:

1. CDs with the sounds of nature and music for children

2. Threads for knitting

3. Regular and big batteries

4. Musical instruments

5. Copybooks for Writing and Mathematics

6. Colored wool

7. Big wind ball

8. Acrylic lacquer

9. Crepe paper

10. Carton paper (40 x 30 or 50 x 50)

11. Acrylic paints

12. “Dragon” glue

13. Colored napkins

14. Medical plaster

15. Picture frames, size A4 and 13x18, 3D frames

16. Photo wall-paper

17. Binders

18. Mathematics text books for the first-year students

19. DVD player

20. Crochet threads, crochet

21. Box tree

22. Roses

23. Chestnut trees

24. Simulators

25. Paper А4 format

26. Soccer balls

Thank you for your help and your moral support. Remember that we are the only ones who can help those children and grown-ups! Every dollar and every minute of your attention towards those special children are as good as gold. Do good!

Happy Child foundation - effective help to the most needy children of the Zaporozhye region, Ukraine, since 2004

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