MY TRIP TO ROMANIA MARCH 2018, written by Lynn Grounds

I discovered Humanitas not long after they opened the shop in Hitchin.  I met Katherine, Sarah’s mother first and she explained to me what the shop was raising money for Romania. Last year when another volunteer Kasia Burke went to Ghana I mentioned I would like to go to see their work in Romania...so in March 2018 a trip was organised with two staff and four volunteers.  My husband John should get a mention here-  as he also supports the charity behind the scenes.

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He got up early on a very snowy and cold morning and drove us to the airport.  A couple of hours later we landed in Oradea where we were met and driven to Tinca where the Safe Homes Project is. We arrived at Safe Homes  to meet the “Parents” who look after 7 children in each home.  I don’t know what I was expecting but what I found was the most amazing, loving human beings who held all these children in their hearts.  The children had nearly all been abandoned, either left in hospital when born or had been “rescued” and all from Roma families.  The name of the project “Safe Homes” fitted perfectly.  The children, some now young teenagers, were confident, safe and happy.  The warmth that came from their foster parents was shared between them, loving brothers and sisters.  A real family.

Humanitas also supports other children in private homes – foster families and they have two amazing social workers who watch over them.  They also have a full time physiotherapist who works with some of the children most days and who probably would not be as physically able if it wasn’t for him.  None of this would be in place if it wasn’t for the love and care from all those involved.  Someone else has said “a second chance in life” and that is what you see in Tinca.  It may have been cold and snowy outside but the warmth of love and compassion inside was inspirational. 

The work that Humanitas have done in Romania defies description, I cannot find the words. Their work is more than fundraising.  It is compassion, commitment and love and much more.  So, how do I feel now?  I “did” something in 1989 and then moved on so I feel privileged that I have been given another opportunity to be part of an amazing charity.  Humbled.