Orphans in Bulgaria

I’m back from vacation! So now commences the search for an activity for the rest of the summer. One thing I’m thinking of doing is going to Bulgaria.

Speaking of Bulgaria, I think I need to write at least one blog post about the orphans in Bulgaria. Recently there have been quite a lot of international media outcries about the plight of the orphans in Bulgaria. The ‘original’ documentary was BBC’s ‘Bulgaria’s abandoned children’. Here it is, but I think all viewers should bear in mind that Bulgaria’s government is actively working to better conditions at orphanages, and many volunteers go to help these ‘abandoned’ (I think this word is way too strong for this case) children.

Recently, a French documentary also came out about the plight of Bulgarian orphans.

Bulgaria’s government, though, is trying to improve the conditions that the children live in:

The support for orphans, living in special homes is going up from BGN 3947 to 5961. The increase would become effective beginning July 1, 2008 and includes all 1461 children living in the specialized homes till they finish 12th grade, but are not older than 20 years of age.

Plus, the dedication of people like Hyeon make me very optimistic about the whole situation:

This summer, I will be going to one of Plovdiv’s orphanages, Rodopski Pansion, that have been significantly reformed since 2007 through a volunteer organization. The fact that it has opened up to receive help from international volunteers to stay with the orphans who have no relatives to stay with during the summer shows the significant extent of the reforms. Although I know that this is an opportunity for me to help these children who are in need of personal attention, I am still troubled by the thought that there are many more orphanages in more rural villages that don’t even have the bare minimum given to the orphans at Rodopski Pansion.

However, still more needs to be done.  I applaud those helping orphans in need, and I wish the best of luck to them.


About renovatio

I'm a recent college graduate looking forward to realizing my dreams. Hopefully, some of you will share in my successes by reading my blogs!
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4 Responses to Orphans in Bulgaria

  1. Pingback: Bulgaria’s image problem « Grok me?

  2. Shani Hedden says:

    My niece was adopted from Bulgaria-my brother and sister in law were appalled at how many abandoned children there were, and they said the white Bulgarians were openly hostile to 2 white Americans who had adopted a Gypsy baby. At first I wondered, was there a war to cause all these orphans? Looks to me like the sexual mores and racism are the likely cause. Makes me so sad…knowing how wonderful a child my niece is, knowing of the others who won’t ever get a chance to really live and be loved. I hope they are improving things over there. If I could afford it, I would adopt a child from there in a heartbeat.

    • thetechnoir says:

      No, we don’t actually need war. We just have a goma/gipsy minority. About 80% of these kids are not actually orphans, just abodoned.

      Huge part of the roma minority lives on social wellfare. That way, the more kids you have, the more profitable (as long as you don’t really care for them). But the more the child grows, the les profitable it becomes. At the end fo the day gipsies give birth to a lot more children, but a few care for them after becomming more than 4 years old.

      So that’s how the orphanages get full.

      We actually don’t have a clue how to deal with gipsies in a politically correct manner.

  3. renovatio says:

    I absolutely agree with you. It’s quite unfortunate that there is hostility and understanding toward the Roma people. On the other hand, I only know the Bulgarian side of the story. I don’t really know the Roma side of the story, as I am not Roma.

    However, the hostility doesn’t seem to just come from the fact that Roma are not ethnic Bulgarians – it mostly comes from actions (perceived or real) of the Roma and their style of life, which is to a large degree unsanitary, unkempt, and irresponsible (look up Roma in Bulgaria and see how they live, despite the efforts of the government and cities to provide them with adequate housing). Sometimes it is criminal. The real problem in Bulgaria is how to integrate the Roma into society. They actually resist this effort to a large degree, and prefer to live their traditional lives. To Bulgarians, having a Roma ghetto on the outskirts of Sofia is a disgrace and embarrassment, especially when it is one of two ways to get from the airport to the city proper.

    Also, many Bulgarians also complain that the Roma take advantage of the fact that the Bulgarian government pays people to have children; and so they simply have many children, more than they can care for.

    Of course this is the Bulgarian viewpoint. I’m interested in hearing the Roma viewpoint, as I don’t think I’ve ever heard it. It would be quite enlightening to hear how Roma feel about living in Bulgaria.

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