LAST month, we wrote an article in regards to our projects, based in Romania. The Bianca Project and Jim’s House are projects within our charity SHARE, that are truly close to our hearts. As a trustee, volunteer and supervisor, I would like to set out our visions and hope for the future also.
I have been involved with SHARE since 2013, aged 20 and very naïve to the world. I was shy and lacked confidence in every aspect. The Bianca Project, not only helped my confidence personally but also professionally as an occupational therapist. I had no idea that this would be the basis for my career. I left a piece of my heart in Sibiu in 2013, and each time I go back I leave more and more there. Having been to Romania for our project 9 times, I can truly say that this life-changing experience, achieves more and more each year. Even though we have not been able to visit in 2020, it does not mean that whilst we have been in the UK we have not planned for the future and completed fundraising for both the Bianca Project and Jim’s House.
The Bianca Project achieves more and more each year, and our biggest achievements happened in 2019. With the continuity of regular supervisors building rapport, we built the trust to be able to take some of the children out of the children’s centre, beyond where many of them have previously been. We have achieved taking some of the children to Salt Lakes, indoor swimming pools and to the local park. Whilst this does not sound like a great achievement in the UK, this was many of the children’s first time beyond the gates of the centre. There is nothing like the smile of a child after trying their first mouthful of ice cream!
In October’s article, we explained about Jim’s House. How this has become a home for life for 3 extraordinary young people. Whilst spending a significant amount of their life in a children’s centre, we have partnered with Love Light Romania to give these three young people a home for life outside of an institution. We have been informed that during the pandemic, they have each come on leaps and bounds. This has shown just how fiercely independent they are, mainly just needing assistance for cooking and food preparation. This would not have happened without the support from Share and Love Light Romania. We could not be any prouder of them, they are now regularly accessing the community, baking cakes and doing their own housework and cleaning. To be part of this as a trustee and volunteer has been an incredible part of this, as we each know that this would not have happened without the decisions that we collectively made.
We hope that Jim’s house will continue for many more years, for this to be a home for life for the three young people that it supports. This will take lots of fundraising efforts which we regularly discuss as trustees. We want the three young people to be able to access the community more and more, and we would like the support workers that Share fund to be able to work with the young people to access public transport as independently as possible. We would also like – when the pandemic allows, for the volunteers to be able to take them away for a few nights to give them more opportunities. Love Light Romania have another project in Jacodu working with a Roma Gypsy Community, and this would be a fantastic opportunity for our three young people to experience, as they have polytunnels so can engage in lots of gardening activities, and opportunities to meet new people.
The future for the SHARE Bianca Project is hoped that we will continue to be allowed to take the children to experience outside of the children’s centre. We want to be able to have these experiences for the children more often and we want to be able to give some of the younger children more sensory experiences. We want to be able to help them regulate their own sensory needs eventually which means helping them experience this as much as possible. We have hope for the future to be so bright for both the children in Speranta and the young adults in Jim’s House. We have hope for the future that we can help educate the children’s carers further on their individual health conditions and the resulting physical and emotional needs and how to support the children with these. We have so much hope that we can continue to fundraise for these projects to make them have the outcomes the children and young people fully deserve.
For more information on our projects please visit our website: https://share.charity or follow our Facebook page @uk.share.charity