I finally found a family

Category: Stories Published on 19 March 2015

Since first years of life Lena didn't get the chance of growing and developing as a normal kid in a normal complete family. Despite the fact that she was the only child in the family, love, care, attention, education and many other such values were not daily gifts for her, meant to improve her well-being. Most of her childhood lacked her mother's presence because her mother, Irina, was involved in a criminal gang. After a few years of activity, she was arrested and sent into prison for 6 years. Lena’s relationship with her mother was not so bright; she suffered because of her mother’s absence and wished to have her back.

 

            During these 6 years and many others after, Lena lived in many different locations including orphanages in the area, the poor care of her mother’s concubine, close acquaintances from the city, and various social assistance services. Many random people she encountered and spent time with offered her help, but not her mother.

            After 6 years of prison, her mother came back home with a very rude and violent attitude towards Lena. Her mother started to exploit Lena and treat her like a slave in order to satisfy her concubine and herself. Many times she was forced to sell sunflower seeds at the train station in order to make money to buy food. In other words - she was living a very rough and cold way of life.  

            One day, Irina decided to go abroad in search for money. Instead of finding a proper job, she became victim of sexual exploitation in a foreign country. Lena and others were thinking that she would never return, but she did. Right away the local services took her and Lena to the Protection Center of Victims of Sexual Exploitation. For Lena this new and pleasant change seemed like the beginning of a fresh life, but disappointment came shortly after when her mother left the center. The only person on Earth she really loved left her alone again.    

            In February 2014 Lena came to Dream House. From the start, we noticed a scared teenage girl, trying hard with her last strengths to hold on to life. Her first thoughts were, “Dream Home is just another usual and unpleasant orphanage in which I need to be for a while”, but things were not as she thought. Shortly after her coming she was convinced of one thing - that finally this was a good place to live in, a place where love, care and help are not limited. She said: "Here I finally got a family".

According to the observations conducted by the social workers, it was evident that Lena had been subjected to physical violence, changed six different schools, which negatively affected her educational performances, and, due to malnutrition, Lena was identified with stomach diseases. Furthermore, relationships with her mother were very hostile. Generally speaking, Dream House had to work hard to guide her back to a normal healthy life.  

            During one year of Lena 's residence within Dream House, we noticed a small chain of positive changes. First of all, she built friendships with others; second, she sharply raised her school achievements; third, she improved her memory; and fourth, she developed passion towards foreign languages. Lena learned accuracy and care. She also learned to maintain the cleanliness, not only in her room, but also around the house. Step by step, she began to cook, learned to work with clay and enjoys attending all clay work classes. As for relationships with others, we also see some certain changes: she always gives her best to control negative emotions when facing something unpleasant, trying not to raise her voice, but rather to evaluate the situation and, if is necessary, to ask for forgiveness.   

            Of course, all these gratifying changes come alive within a long and difficult process of work, both for project's workers and Lena. With all this hard work, the youngest beneficiary in the center will become a prosperous and successful person in life.

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