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Changing a Generation: Affecting the lives of children and their parents
In Bulgaria, we're seeing our program not only effect the lives of our children, but also the parents and guardians. Recently, one of the guardians who is 54 years old started back into school! She never finished 3rd grade, and now she's enthusiastically studying and learning along with the children she watches. She said, "I want my life to count!" Another young mother, 34 years old, also began going back to get her education. It's exciting to see children affecting their elders in a positive light.

Going Fishing
"My favorite thing in the world is fishing!" Says Dokor, a young boy in our Bulgarian sponsorship program. When asked what he likes to catch best, his expression gets puzzled. "Well, I don't know, I've never been fishing." "Dokor, you've never been? Then how do you know you like it?" "Well, I just watch it all the time on the television. I watch all of the fishing channels and I just really love fishing! It's my favorite thing!" This young boy has never gone fishing, never seen a river, and doesn't own a pole, yet it is his favorite. It is his dream. And our goal is to make this dream come true. Within the next few months, we hope to take Dokor on a fishing trip, and let his favorite thing become a real thing! (Name changed for protection purposes)

First Swimming Day
Jenna is a 9 year old in our program. She declared boldly that her favorite thing to do is swimming. When asked how many times she's gone, she said "NOW." At the time of this conversation, Jenna and several others of the kids were at a pool outside of the city. We took them on a "field trip" there for a fun experience. Jenna went onto explain to us after she made this statement that she'd always heard about swimming, but had never been before. This experience in the pool was her first time, and her new favorite memory! (Name changed for protection purposes)

A Story of a young boy from our sponsorship program

Nuil always helps at church and hot-lunch events. He's a sweet boy of just 10 years old who's been through so much. But you would never know, except for his sad eyes. He has the eyes of a person who's lonely and longing for love. His mother, who he was close with, has abandoned him twice. He was living with his father and brother, but didn't get along with his father's new girlfriend so, just recently, Nuil was kicked out. Now, he lives with his grandparents. Mother – left. Father – rejected. Nuil's eyes tell this story. But, when he's at the meetings and events sponsored by Changing a Generation, there's just a little spark in his dark irises. He feels love. Through simple things like food, school supplies, or a Christmas gift, Nuil has glimpses of knowing he's not forgotten. (Name changed for protection purposes)

A young mom just got involved with one of the organizations we work with.  She's under 30 and has 3 children.  They are gypsies (darker skinned), so even though the mother had to quit her job because of two consecutive work-related surgeries, she was denied welfare.  The family has nothing, but through our partnership, her children can now get food to survive.  The mother says,  "I'm so excited that someone actually cares enough to get my kids food."

In a recent life-training class on patience, the children were instructed to pass around a present for 3 minutes.  Whoever ended up with it in the end got to keep it.  After the 3 minutes were up, the teacher asked, "Was it hard to wait and be patient to see who would get the present?"  4 of the children said, "No."  When asked why, they responded, "We've never received a present before, so we knew it wouldn't be for us."  This year, they're going to receive Christmas presents – their first!

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