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site.btaChildren of Bulgaria Organization in New York Raises over USD 500,000 for Good Causes in Bulgaria - Co-founder Yordanova

Children of Bulgaria Organization in New York Raises over USD 500,000 for Good Causes in Bulgaria - Co-founder Yordanova
Children of Bulgaria Organization in New York Raises over USD 500,000 for Good Causes in Bulgaria - Co-founder Yordanova
Part of the team behind Children of Bulgaria (Polina Yordanova Photo)

The Children of Bulgaria organization, established in New York by Polina Yordanova and Orlin Yordanov, has raised over BGN 900,000 (USD 500,000) from its donors. The next goal is to donate more than BGN 1 million worth of equipment, instruments, and goods for children in Bulgaria, Yordanova told BTA. 

She is president and chairperson of the organization. In the summer of 2013, she and Yordanov sought medical assistance at Sofia's Pirogov Emergency Hospital. Touched by the personnel's kindness, they decided to help however they can from the United States, where they live. In November 2013, they organized a charity cocktail in New York and were encouraged by the local Bulgarians' responsiveness. They raised USD 10,000 and attracted other volunteers to the organization. That is how the first project of Children of Bulgaria came to be: a project for the children's ward at Pirogov.

"We delivered a set of instruments for laparoscopic (minimally invasive) surgery for the children's ward of Pirogov. These instruments are particularly important when performing surgery on babies and young children and help save babies' lives. We also supplied three systems to measure the pressure in the pleural cavity of the lungs of newborns and children. The systems are necessary in the diagnosis and treatment of the condition pneumothorax," said Yordanova. 

She explained that the organization is named Children of Bulgaria because not only does it help children in the homeland, but all the organizers and volunteers are also children of Bulgaria. After the initial success, the organization grew over the next ten years, attracting donors from all over the world and successfully completing eleven projects for children in Bulgaria. Children of Bulgaria is currently led by eight volunteers. 

Yordanova said that the causes the organization supports are many and varied. "We have helped schools for visually impaired and hearing impaired children, centres for socially disadvantaged children, orphanages, centres and schools for children with special needs, centres for children with autism, children's and maternity wards in hospitals. We try to help children all over Bulgaria, in big cities and small towns. We are all volunteers and the donations go directly to the children," she explained.

"The suppliers are mostly from Bulgaria - so we help the country's economy further. We always negotiate the best prices and use discounts as a charity. After each project is completed, we publish detailed financial reports on our website - we are committed to full transparency with our donors and supporters. Our current campaign is for children with special needs and autism in the South East and Pernik," she noted. 

Yordanova said that they are looking for projects where they can be of the most help. "As we do not send money, but buy and supply equipment, furniture, materials and tools, we choose projects where these are needed," she specified. "For example, we built a playground for hearing-impaired children in Varna, we supplied incubators, beds, medical cabinets, infusion pumps and monitors for paediatric wards in hospitals, and we bought furniture, specialised equipment and teaching aids for children with special needs in different cities, built a salt room for a special education support centre in Dolni Dabnik, equipped specialized classrooms and donated specialized software and a vision control system for children with special needs in Plovdiv, and much more. We choose facilities whose management is as responsive and interested as we are in the welfare of children. In the past, we have mainly helped children in specialised centres and schools and children's wards in hospitals, but it is possible to expand our activities to include ordinary schools around the country," Yordanova told BTA. 

She described the steps of a charity campaign: "Suggestions for projects come either from an outside source or from ourselves after we do a needs survey of different childcare facilities in Bulgaria. Usually around November each year, the Board of Directors holds a series of meetings when we select and announce our next project where we feel we will be most helpful. We select the best prices and suppliers, negotiate and do the procurement. We publish financial reports online after each campaign is completed." 

According to Yordanova, most donors are from the Bulgarian community abroad or people connected in some way to Bulgaria. "There are many donors from Bulgaria. We have also received donations from Bulgarian companies. We list the names of our top donors under each project on our website as a sign of gratitude and appreciation. Some of them choose to remain anonymous. Many US companies double or even triple the donations of their employees and thus we also receive donations from companies based in the States. We have also had sponsors for our fundraisers in New York," she said. Yordanova expressed the hope that Children for Bulgaria will attract other sponsors in the future.

/DS/

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By 22:35 on 23.05.2024 Today`s news

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