Novinki Orphanage For Special Needs Children
Novinki Orphanage is a very large institution on the outskirts of the capital city, Minsk. It is home to over 250 children. The institution has a number of organisations carrying out ongoing work at one time or another. The Sunflower Chernobyl Appeal was asked to carry out work to Units 3 and 4 which are home to about 70 severely disabled or mentally challenged children, many of them bed or cot bound, some of them unfortunately terminally ill. The two units were in need of renovation and the windows were in bad condition. The Sunflower Chernobyl Appeal volunteers financed and installed 40 new double-glazed windows and renovated the bedrooms and corridors. We also installed some new electrics and floor coverings. Our voluntary workers completed the work by decorating the two units, installed TV-video Combi units in some rooms for the children to watch cartoons. Part of the ceilings in the unit corridor had to be replaced completely and re-wired. New lights were also fitted.
On the second work project new double-glazed windows were installed in the gym area which was financed by The Sunflower Chernobyl Appeal. We converted part of a building beside the laundry outside the perimeter wall into a workshop for the boys. The room was newly re-wired for machine tools and fitted with workbenches. We also supplied and installed some power tools. The idea behind this project is to teach the boys some skills. The therapudic effect will be beneficial and it will get them out of the units. This project is now up and running. Back in Unit 4 we renovated a therapy room and financed the fitting of built-in presses and furniture. Curtains were also put on all new windows in the two units. It was a pleasure to see the children as they moved into their newly refurbished rooms transformed by the Sunflowers Volunteers. We financed the purchase of 131 new beds including 29 hospital-type cots which are of metal construction and are safer and more hygenic than the old timber ones.