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linda wadsworth

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1 reviews

Review for Romanian Children's Relief, Reston, VA, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

I first thought about volunteering for Fundatia Inocenti after watching the documentary ‘Hand Held’. At the time of the film premier in Bucharest, my family had only been living in Romania for a few weeks but what I saw in the documentary was a story of hope and stubborn dedication in a situation that was desperate.
My volunteer experience is of working as a small part of the 'Child Life' Program in Bucharest. I have helped by playing and interacting with babies and hospitalised children in the playroom in Bucharest. This is a part of a wonderful program which aims to support, stimulate and improve the quality of life for these hospitalised and abandoned children.Dedicated trained professionals staff are an integral part of this scheme whilst the time and care of an expat volunteer like me is a small but vital part of the program. it is such a satisfying way to spend the morning; reading stories, building towers, singing songs and generally giving the babies care and love and attention. What have I and the other volunteers achieved? We have worked with the highly dedicated and caring staff in making these young lives a little better. We have created opportunities for stimulation and educational development for babies who have the misfortune of being hospitalized for prolonged periods of time. I know as a former teacher and mother just how important these early years are.
It is important in our transient expat community in Bucharest to ensure that the marvelous work of the Foundation is always publicized and known, locally and further afield. Through word of mouth, events, school based work experience and talks we can do that. We can raise funds to help sustain the programs and further expand them. It seems very little compared to the enduring and professional work of the staff. For this reason, I also went to Bistrita to further witness some of the work of the Foundation. I volunteered to help at the Special Olympics - an annual community event which celebrates the potential of children with disabilities. This is so important and again, I was overwhelmed by the dedication of the Fundatia Inocenti staff and the way in which they worked with the local people in creating an atmosphere of positivity and value for the children. My overwhelming impression afterwards was that the team of staff that Fundatia Inocenti has in Bistrita is a very exceptional one. The level of commitment, ownership, professionalism and dedication to the children was apparent in every single person that I spoke to. There is passion and enthusiasm for the programs and most importantly, a desire to improve and move forward. As a former UK Headteacher, I know that this is the key to success

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Role:  Volunteer