Update on Pleven!

May 3rd, 2012

The following update is copied from the blog of Shelley Bedford:

 

Two weeks ago, there was a big meeting in Sofia with the Vice Minister of Health, representatives from the Child Protection Agency and a whole lot of other people, including representatives from various Bulgarian NGOs. The meeting’s purpose was to develop a plan for improving the conditions at the orphanage in Pleven and to see who (what organizations) could do what RIGHT NOW to help the children of Pleven and meet their current needs.

The Vice Minister of Health was pleasantly surprised to hear how much money has been raised so far to meet the medical needs of the children at Pleven (The fund is currently at $36,000).

Earlier this week, the official proposal was released. As expected, the 2 projects we are advocating for are on the list and “officially assigned” to be done.

So, we continue to need your help!!!!!

Here are the 2 tasks we are trying to complete as part of the efforts to reform the conditions and level of care the children at Pleven receive and how you can help:

1.) One Heart Bulgaria will be employing 2 nurses full time to work on the 6th floor, where the children with the most severe special needs live. These nurses will be trained by Prof. Lilova and will have the responsibility to ensure that the children are properly fed and that all medical needs are addressed.

We are raising the funds to cover the salary and training of these 2 nurses for a minimum of one year. Initially, the goal was to fund more nurses for less time. But, after the inspection of the orphanage and the findings there, it was determined that the greatest need is for well trained supervised nurses on the 6th floor. To date, this project has raised over $6,000, with a projected need of $10, 815.
To donate to this project, you can make an online donation using the chip in at the bottom of this post or you can send a check with the designation, “Pleven nurse fund” on it to:

One Heart Bulgaria
561 N. 150 W.
Centerville, UT 84014 USA

All donations made by check or through the chip in are tax deductible through One Heart Bulgaria.

2.) Through a partnership with Tokuda Hospital in Sofia, Dreams Foundation (in Bulgaria) and Eli Project (in the US) have established a medical fund to provide surgeries and other medical care above what is covered by Bulgaria’s national health insurance to the children at Pleven.

The money raised through this effort will fund the medical treatment and cover the transportation costs to get the children from the orphanage in Pleven to the hospital in Sofia. Tokuda Hospital will in no way profit from this partnership, as Prof. Lilova and the hospital have volunteered their services for the children at Pleven. Per the agreement with the hospital, detailed expense reports on each child that receives care will be provided so that every dollar donated to this account is accounted for. Updates on the care provided and the number of children benefiting from this fund will be shared.

The first child to have surgery covered under this fund will receive his surgery TOMORROW! He’ll be having an eye lens implant done. The surgery is covered under the Bulgarian health plan, but the lenses are not. So, the Pleven Medical Fund will cover the cost of the lenses so that this little boy can SEE! Six children have already received evaluations and basic feeding care and those expenses will be paid as well.

Currently, the medical fund has received $36,000 in donations.

As fabulous as this is, more is needed.

I wish that I could say that only a few children need extensive medical care, but the reality is that there are many many children that need treatment and procedures to improve their health.

Donations to the medical fund can be made via the chip in below or directly through Eli Project on their specific page for the Pleven Medical Fund Project, which is located here. All donations are tax deductible through Eli Project.

Several people have asked about donating Pediasure, clothes, toys and other items to the orphanage in Pleven. One of the things revealed in the investigation is that over $300,000 worth of donations are “missing”. Donations and funds were mismanaged by those previously entrusted with the care of the children.

All donations made to any orphanage in Bulgaria should be legally documented in writing, which wasn’t happening at Pleven.

IT IS NOW.

Pediasure, formula, food items and medications (including things like diaper rash cream) all have strict guidelines on what can and can not be accepted. That is why, at this time, we are NOT asking for these types of donations. There are organizations going in and providing food and diapers and such. These things need to be bought in Bulgaria.

We are currently trying to determine if there is a way to get specialized formula that is not able to be purchased in Bulgaria in for the children who need it. There is a legal process that must be followed in order for that to be done and we’ll update as soon as we have information on that. There are also families traveling to adopt children from Pleven that are taking donations to purchase diapers and other items once they are in Bulgaria, so that the donations can be legally documented. One Heart Bulgaria is also accepting donations to provide diapers and food to the orphanage in Pleven. They have a provider in Bulgaria that provides diapers at a discounted price. People wishing to donate for food and diapers can do so through this link, and specify that the money is for “food and diapers for Pleven”. We are thankful that there are many organizations stepping in to meet the day to day needs of ALL the children at Pleven.

If you’d like to help the children with medical needs and those with the most severe special needs, please consider a donation to one of the 2 above mentioned projects. Both projects are being supported by US non-profit organizations for accountability and so that all donations are tax deductible to donors.

[Note from Susanna:  There are Chip-in buttons over on the sidebar for both projects.  Please pass the word along.  This is literally life-saving help!]

The next update on Pleven will be about all the children benefiting from these efforts!

PRAY. SHARE. GIVE.

~Shelley Bedford

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3 Responses to “Update on Pleven!”

  1. CHRISTINE says:

    I’m ready to bawl my eyes out here at work. I’m so happy for the help that’s starting to get to these children, but also so sad that they have been in this situation for so long.

    I’ve noticed the influx of listings for children at Pleven, and hope that more come soon.

    I will continue to give and pray.

    Hugs and blessings to all of the “feet on the ground” and those who are supporting the cause. :-)

  2. Susanna says:

    Christine, THANK YOU for giving AND for praying! There are only two children on RR from Pleven right now, Alyssa and Gabby. We need to continue to pray for the files of the rest of the children to make their way through the process so that they are available for adoption, too!

  3. Terri White says:

    Wonderful news!  I will be praying specifically for the little guy getting a lens implant today.  I had the same surgery as a child.  God bless you for all the work you have done since first setting foot in Pleven last year!

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