Provide Long-Term Mentors to Disadvantaged Youth

by Step for Bulgaria Foundation
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Provide Long-Term Mentors to Disadvantaged Youth
Provide Long-Term Mentors to Disadvantaged Youth
Provide Long-Term Mentors to Disadvantaged Youth
Provide Long-Term Mentors to Disadvantaged Youth
Provide Long-Term Mentors to Disadvantaged Youth
Provide Long-Term Mentors to Disadvantaged Youth
Provide Long-Term Mentors to Disadvantaged Youth

Project Report | Jan 29, 2024
230+ lessons for children's optimal growth!

By Elena Furnadjieva | CEO

Dear friends,

For over one year now, we have decided to direct our focus to support children at risk for their optimal development and independence through offering neuroplasticity lessons to youth with various neurological conditions. We have shared with you that we launched a microproject on GlobalGiving last fall to support those families of benefitting children who couldn't afford the cost of working with experienced neuroplasticity practitioners. 

Thanks to your generous and timely support, we attracted additional funds from GlobalGiving on Giving Tuesday! As a result, we got a little closer to our initial fundraising goal of $8000. 

As part of our initiative to support Optimal Brain Learning for children with various neurological conditions, we hosted three series of neuroplasticity lessons in Sofia, Bulgaria with experienced practitioners of the Anat Baniel NeuroMovement method in Sept, Oct and Dec 2023. The practitioners gave a total of over 230 lessons to: 
- 8 children in September
- 12 children in October
- 12 children in December

At least 5 of these children are participating continuously in more than one series of lessons and experiencing the cumulative effect of optimal learning on their better movement, communication skills, social interactions, emotional management and intellectual abilities. We are very happy to partner with the Hope for the Little Ones Foundation transitional care houses in Sofia, where the experienced neuroplasticity practitioners worked in Oct and Dec with 0-3 year-old children with various challenges resulting from difficult birth and early life circumstances. The feedback from their caregivers at the "Little Houses" has been very positive - neuroplasticity lessons have helped the babies improve their movement, capacity to engage with the world and levels of energy. 

 

After a full year of regular neuroplasticity lessons series (roughly one every 2 months) that we have organized in 2023, we asked the families who have experienced this work to share feedback and tell us if they'd like for their children to continue getting lessons from experienced neuroplasticity practitioners. 100% of regularly engaged families responded. 75% of them confirmed that they would like their children to receive an intensive series of lessons once every 4-6 weeks in 2024, and the rest opted for once every 3 months. 

Here's what the mother of an autism-spectrum boy shares about the impact of neuroplasticity lessons on her son: "My son has had a total of 8 series of 5-10 lessons in the past year. We observe changes in him after every lesson - he does things that he wasn't able to do or he hasn't grasped before. His fine and gross motor skills improved. He senses better his own body and discovers on his own what he's capable of. He manages to fall asleep alone, including in the dark - which was not the case prior to experiencing the neuroplasticity approach. He manages to communicate his wishes and to insist on his will being followed, which he wasn't doing before." 

Here's what the mother of a child with a mild form of cerebral palsy shares: "My daughter becomes more energetic, uses more evenly both sides of her body (one of which is typically less mobile and engaged), and discovers new ways to move after each series of lessons. She has improved her speech and capacity to manage and communicate her emotions (at age 3!) as a result of the lessons. We will continue working with neuroplasticity practitioners as this is the best approach we've seen so far to develop her independence and sense of "I can" which every child needs, especially children with inborn neurological challenges like her. This mindset is something no traditional physiotherapy or speech therapy provides nor relies on."

As the microproject on Optimal Brain Learning reached its limited duration, pre-determined by GlobalGiving, and we see continuous need among children and their families to provide optimal brain education, we will soon post a new project dedicated to this activity. In the meantime, we welcome your continued support and engagement here! We are extremely excited and hopeful that our renewed and upgraded focus to provide optimal development and independent life skills to youth is bringing such visible results! 

Thank you!
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Oct 6, 2023
First three children with Optimal Brain Education

By Asya Stancheva | Project coordinator

Jun 8, 2023
24 career workshops for 130 students

By Asya Stancheva | Project coordinator

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Organization Information

Step for Bulgaria Foundation

Location: Sofia - Bulgaria
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Elena Furnadzhieva
Sofia , Sofia Bulgaria

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