This is the first project to roll out childcare services provided by ZOV in Veliko Turnovo outside the region.
The project aims to benefit a large institution in Vratsa catering for 45 children aged 7 to 18 deprived of parental care. The Child Protection Agency reports children suffering from a high level of aggression and absconding, exposing children and especially girls to risk of abuse. Childrenís welfare in Vratsa is adversely affected by the poor economic situation in North-West Bulgaria with high levels of unemployment and crime.
The project responds to approaches from a social worker in Vratsa aware of the results of the ZOV Mentoring and Outreach Project in Veliko Turnovo. The ZOV Outreach and Mentoring project in Veliko Turnovo is in its ninth year, results of which have increased the rate of children getting jobs and going onto further education after institutional care from 20% to 90% and the scheme has won local and national awards and acclaim. This Innovative project links student volunteers with children in care to promote personal relationships and to provide emotional and educational support. The volunteers are supervised and supported by social workers.
The Mentoring system has established results in improving individual childrenís self-awareness and esteem, concentration in schoolwork and independent study and promoting life skills such as improving social communication and personal motivation.
The project is already underway, with student volunteers receiving training with funds raised by an individualís sponsored fun run in UK. The Special Appeal is to secure funds for the Project throughout the rest of the academic year so we can provide these life changing opportunities to more deprived children.
With the existing personal connection between the Child Protection Agency in Vratsa and ZOV in Veliko Turnovo, Friends of Bulgaria are pleased to identify it with the 2017 Christmas Appeal, confident that this promising initiative is an important step for rolling out the example of ZOVís established programmes for the benefit of children more widely in Bulgaria.
We hope you will join us in supporting this Special Appeal: for 6 December Christmas Party - website ticket applications opens November 2017.