Our enamel workshop in action
We don't believe in just giving shelter and food to homeless young people. We also provide training or help them to get into education or work, so that they will be able to stand on their own two feet as adults. This year, we re-opened our enamel workshop, where we train our young people to make jewellery. Our first exhibition and sale will be held on July 10th. All money from sales will be spent on materials, so we can expand production.
The workshop is managed by Jemal and Vanya.
We met Vanya in 2000 when he was living in an orphanage. He is the youngest of four brothers. When the oldest brother was 8 years-old, and Vanya only eight months, their parents left for Russia leaving them behind with elderly grandmother. The children have not heard from them since. The grandmother became bedridden soon after so she could no longer care for the children. They started to wander the streets and got involved in glue-sniffing and all sorts as they struggled to survive.
One of their neighbours took the children to an orphanage, but they only took the younger brothers – Kolya and Vanya. The older brothers were still left to wander the streets. Fortunately, a new orphanage opened up and Pavlik and Borya found shelter there. Soon afterwards the grandmother passed away.
When we met Pavlik and Borya at their orphanage we offered to teach them enamel craft. From the very beginning the children were very keen to learn and they quickly became successful. Their products were purchased and exhibited by the Museum of Modern Enamel Arts and at various exhibitions. They grew professionally and were taken on as teachers. Their products were sold in Georgia, Germany, Italy and United States. The magazine of the American Association of Enamel Artists wrote an article about them.
In 2003 Kolya and Vanya moved to join their brothers so they were together in one orphanage, and three years' later they also joined our enamel workshop. When Pavlik and Borya had to leave the orphanage, they moved to our newly established shelter.
We searched for their parents, so that their apartment could be officially registered in the children’s name. After contacting their parents, the brothers decided to move to Russia to live with them. Only the youngest brother (who was underage by that time and still lived at the orphanage) remained in Georgia. When the boys arrived in Moscow they faced with a situation quite unlike what their parents had described – they had to start a new life with absolutely nothing. Fortunately, they were able to earn a living with their enamel work.
Vanya was taken in by his aunt after his orphanage was closed. Unfortunately, she passed away a year ago and Vanya was kicked out by his uncle. He started working in an enamel workshop where the management exploited and underpaid him. 3 months ago Vanya asked us to take him in. At that time, we were planning to develop our enamel workshop and Vanya now lives with us and started to manage it along with Jemal. We are very pleased with his performance and have high hopes for his future.
Thank you very much for helping us give Vanya a home and the opportunity to develop his skills. If you would like to contribute again, then June 15th is a good day to make a donation because Global Giving will be adding 50% to donations to our project. This bonus day starts at 9am EDT and runs until midnight. Please note that if you give through the UK Global Giving site, the UK bonus day starts at 2pm BST and runs until 5pm the following day. We recommend that you make your donation early because when matching funds are gone, they're gone.
Thank you again for all you have done for our young people.
Examples of our residents' work