Thanks to the many small and big ‘present-givers’, who took part in the charity campaign ‘Christmas at home’, Alos Center, collected 136 kg. toys, books, movies and clothes in partnership with the Sofia private kindergartens: PK “Little Steps”, private kindergarten and school “Drita” and the children’s daycare kindergarten “The little Grapevine”. They were diligently sorted, packed and sent to children deprived of parental care in Specialized Homes in northwestern Bulgaria (the neediest region in the country).
With the advent of the holidays we were able to give joy to 220 children presenting them the collected gifts and the gift-wrapped titbits bought by the private kindergarten and school “Drita”: 65 children from newborn to 7 years old in the Home for Medical and Social Care for Children (HMSCC) in the town of Vidin; in the HMSCC -Montana – 30 children from newborn to 3 months old, 30 children from 1 year to 4 years old and 15 children with disabilities between 5 and 7 years; 70 children –in the HMSCC Vratsa and 10 children in the Center for family-type accommodation – Lom.
In line with the activities developed by the Alos Center to promote children’s creativity and to facilitate the social adaptation of children by means of art, the campaign also included craftwork in the “Christmas Workshop”. Children deprived of parental care in the home of Dragalevtsi, Sofia, led by a team of art pedagogues of the Alos Center, created together Christmas decorations for their home. They also took part in hand-making Christmas cards from paper and natural materials. The aim of the Christmas workshop was not the manufacture of cards, but to get the children to create their own Christmas themselves with lots of laughter, painted little children’s hands and disputes over the scissors and the gold stars.
An advantage of that art therapy is that during the working process the children build up social skills, learn to work in team, to communicate, to overcome conflicts and to express their ideas in an original way. In parallel, they acquire new knowledge and techniques related to specific artistic practices.
The team of Alos Center expresses special thanks to all parents and children who gave of themselves and made a child happy; to directors and kindergarten staff who supported the initiative and encouraged donations; to volunteers at the Alos center, who like tireless dwarfs distributed and gift-wrapped 136 kg presents; to the overfilled Christmas sledge which scurried over Sofia traffic jams, and to all those who with their enthusiasm, generosity and boundless energy made Christmas better and children’s smiles possible.