EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION

by The Delia Foundation
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EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION
EDUCATE disabled orphans DENIED AN EDUCATION

How does an almost 7- year old child whose native language is Romanian, teach herself to read fluently in English and is now working on acquiring Japanese and Russian?  And, by the way, she taught herself to read in Romanian as she does not yet go to school. In this area of the world, there are few teachers who know how to work with special needs kids like 'A" who was diagnosed with being on the autism spectrum.

"A" had a good deal of behavioral issues when she came to us and did not understand how to properly socialize with other children.  Our teachers soon realized that her keen intellect and inquiring mind had no outlet or focus. Little by little, with a lot of 1:1 attention, "A" has begun to learn how to interact more positively with others. AND.. the good news is that she will be attending school in the fall for the first, while continuing to attend Delia's Learning Center part-time.

We almost wouldn't have believed "A" 's language skills  if we hadn't met her ourselves!   And YES, you read that correctly... I got to meet "A" myself.... in person !!    Delia Foundation CEO Laura Larkin and I were finally able to travel back to Romania.  In June, we spent two weeks  in Barlad and the surrounding villages that we serve, spending time with "our" kids and foster families.  We got to give hugs to the special children living at the orphanage and meet with the orphanage director to start new plans in helping her build out their first indoor/outdoor play space for so the kids have a place to go dor art, music, free play, etc . (We are fundraising for that now on the GlobalGiving site under a project called Give Disabled Romanian Orphans their !st Playspace)


Still wondering how "A" taught herself to read and speak other languages? When asked, she says "tv, the tablet."

There is no explanation other than that her beautiful mind works differently than others!  We are thankful to be able to embrace "A"'s differences and help her and our other kids with autism to grow according to their needs.


Wishing everyone a beautiful summer on behalf of myself and co-founders Laura Larkin and David Conway.

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La Multi Ani!    Happy birthday to us!

Spring has sprung in Barlad and our special kids are blooming!  

February marked two years since Delia's Learning Center opened our doors to special needs children in Barlad, Romania.  Last March, we moved into a more spacious new facility enabling each of our staff to have individual rooms to work with the children while still having larger spaces for group activitivies.

The move also gave us a small outdoor space. In just a few weeks, the weather will be warm enough for us to begin planting a vegetable and flower garden with the children. We can't wait!  

We are amazed at the progress the children are making. For some, that means gaining self-esteem and learning to work independently while for others it is learning the joy of reading. We share their excitement at learning to count and understanding basic mathematical concepts. Since many of our children have few social interactions with other kids, we are thrilled to see them now develop friendships and understand appropriate social behaviors during playtime.

So much to celebrate and be thankful for, despite the tumult of the past year. We want to take this moment to again thank you for being a part of our journey in making sure that ALL children have access to education.  Please take a moment to view the photos we are sharing. They will make your day!

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Friends to learn with... play with ...help complete a puzzle or build a lego castle... 
For many of our kids at Delia's Learning Center, this is the first time they have had a friend their own age.  Can you imagine being 5, 8, or 11 years old and due to a physical or developmental disability you are rejected from attending school?  No opportunity to learn how to build relationships with peers. No opportunity to learn from each other. At Delia's Learning Center we have a holistic approach and focus on all areas of a child's development: cognitive, emotional, and physical.

Our teachers and psychologist gently guide children toward appropriate social behaviors and encourage cooperative play and learning. During the past two months, we have continued to grow with additional children joining the twice-daily sessions at our Center. New friendships are formed as together, kids practice writing, learn to recognize the letters of the alphabet, or play numbers and matching games. 

What words are there to express when we observe that a child whose autism and lack of socialization has kept him in his "shell," is all of a sudden engaged in a learning game with another child. 

During this difficult year, we have all experienced isolation from friends. Perhaps it will give you a little boost to know that by supporting The Delia Foundation you have helped some very special children learn through friendship.

We wish you good health in the months ahead. Please reach out to myself, Laura Larkin or David Conway if you would like to know more about our work.

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We had high hopes for this kicking off this new fundraising campaign. We had just moved into a new, larger facility where we have space to serve more children and where we have individual classrooms for each of our three teachers. The wheels were moving on our new autism program. Then, Covid-19 hit and we needed to quickly refocus on how to best help the children attending our Center. Before the Barlad community went into lockdown, we worked with partner Good News for Romania to purchase and deliver food to families living in the rural villages who were facing food insecurities. We swiftly put in a place a plan for Facetime sessions and phone calls to encourage continual learning, provide guidance to families navigating difficult situations and to ensure that medical needs were being met. Once the weather turned warmer, our teachers met kids outdoors in their homes, in the park and at the zoo!

Here's what we did not do: We did not launch the fundraising campaign as planned. The majority of our donors are based in the U.S. and in the UK. We felt that March and early April was not the right time for this campaign.( In December, we held a very successful campaign which enabled us to fund our autism program.)  We were lucky to be able to obtain a rent reduction, we continued to have the support of donors, and we secured multiple grants including a microgrant from GlobalGiving. We view this campaign as "on hold" and will turn back to it.

Delia's Friends Learning Center re-opened last week. We re-opened slowly with just a few children at a time and already have new parents hoping to have their kids join us soon. 

As always, we so appreciate the support of our donors and of our friends "on the ground" in Barlad who help us make this all possible!

Many thanks,

Laura Larkin, CEO, The Delia Foundation

Lauren Fishbach, U.S. Board President

David Conway, Trustee, Association of Delia's Friends

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Organization Information

The Delia Foundation

Location: Anthem, AZ - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @deliafoundation
Project Leader:
Laura Larkin
Anthem, AZ United States
$6,005 raised of $7,000 goal
 
77 donations
$995 to go
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