Our partner charity in Bulgaria, the Door of Hope works with some of the most marginalised and rejected, ethnic people. They mainly work in the village of Chirpan in Eastern Bulgaria. We send shoeboxes to them each year. Many of these ‘homes have no electricity connection. They have no income to pay for it. A low level of education joined to an inability to speak the Bulgarian language, cause many of the youth to drop out of school. Employment is scarce. Over 90% of village folk have no work.
The people in the Ghetto are usually not educated, not experienced and practically not able to follow any job, where discipline, accuracy, care and persistence are needed. They could have the chance (but not for everybody) to find a heavy duty season work on the field, which is limited in time, less than 2 months in the year, and very low as a salary – about £6.50 daily. Their average year income is about £320.00, what is about £1.00 daily. Having in mind the bills for the electricity, water and the other public services, the people of the Chirpan community and the area, are permanently hungry and some of them in a fearsome misery.
It generates the huge problem that the poor youths, going to marry, are not ready for normal family life in many aspects, where the income is the first one. Their children are doomed to live in poverty and later, these children growing up in poverty and low culture level, on their turn, produce poor and weak for social life generation.
It requires our special care and taking additional measures, especially for finding job.
Carpentry: Our course for carpenters is one of the vehicles we can gather boys in our work. In this group we see boys, who have potential and they can use the training for their future job or home work. Oggy is the main instructor here, helped by Pastor Sedat, who has the wish to be included in the course, both as a student and as an assistant.
Together with hand tools for manual work, the students master modern electrical instruments. Downward are given some photos on the work with cutting tools.
Literacy Course: Chirpan is a ghetto and there are many people that do not leave the village. They have little, to no literacy so are unable to find work and move on with their lives. Add to this that Chirpan is a Turkish village then this is doubly hard. These lessons and training include reading passages and discussing the words and their meaning, vocabulary and how phrases are put together. They are given texts for homework. The people are very eager to learn enough literacy to gain even a simple job in the future.
Plumbing Course: People learn all about the importance of water for our human existence. They also learn about measurement, orientation, pipes, materials and dimensions as well as putting a water system together. Lessons are also given on minimising leaks and being economical with water while using it. If you live hand to mouth you are not interested in where water comes from, but we train the students to know the water comes from the mountains, and how the dirty water is led away through drains, and cleaned after its usage. Some of the students do not know left from right so the instructions may have to be as simple as, how to compare it to the clock- wise and counter-clockwise directions on a clock. The course is not only about plumbing but also using the opportunity to give the students more knowledge of the world around them and to learn other disciplines along the way.
Cooking Course: Baking a cake is the first lesson we teach them. However like the plumbing course it is more than just baking. Students learn about weights and measurements, temperatures, correct proportions, timings and how to follow simple instructions. It is also very positive for them to achieve something that they can be praised for. That way confidence can be built upon in the subsequent lessons.