Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Late Night Shopping

Thanks to all our customers who came to "Light  Up Hassocks".  It was a great night for the village, and the charity, as we took over £400 in just a few hours.  We've now almost sold out of our Christmas gifts!

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Christmas Late Night Shopping

Don't forget it is "Light Up Hassocks" this Friday 25th November.
We will be open late and have many wonderful stocking fillers and Christmas gifts for sale.  And of course, we will be giving out glasses of wine and nibbles to all our customers.

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Recent trip to Romania

Louise, a Trustee, and I have just returned from Romania, where I visited 3 of our projects—Speranta Colonie and Providenta Divina in Petrosani, and the Secret Garden run by Vis de Copil in Arad.  It is always great to visit the projects and see first hand the wonderful work being done by our partners in Romania.  I am always struck by how far our small amount of funding goes.  In a world where there is so much need (particularly now with various wars and the refugee crisis foremost in our minds), it can feel like an impossible task to address those needs.  This is why Humanity at Heart support small grass-roots projects, where every penny is used to help those people who are most disadvantaged and who cannot get help elsewhere.  

Ionut and Mati, enjoying the play area at the Secret Garden.  We gave funds for all the new playground equipment

Telca, and the youngest of her 6 children.  She lives in a one room hut made of mud and scraps.

Telca's house in Marului, a shanty town on the outskirts of Arad

this water pump is a life saver

Hannah, with the kids at Speranta Colonie
The beautiful Parang Mountains, above Petrosani

Louise, one of our Trustees, with Adina, the Manager of Speranta Colonie

Friday, 30 September 2016

A great year at the House of Roses

Linda and Mike Barnes have just returned from a visit to the House of Roses, a project which we have supported for many years. It is a home for a group of youngsters with special needs. It is so wonderful to see these young people fulfilling their potential despite their horrific experiences in state care. It is great to know that they have a loving and stable home now.

Here is Linda's latest update:

The six young residents in House of Roses have enjoyed a busy and active year. As they all have learning disabilities their days are planned to maximise their independence and life skills.

They have a rota to ensure all the household jobs are done – washing up, cleaning, tidying, cooking etc. There are also the animals to be looked after (chickens, 2 dogs, 2  rabbits, fish and budgies). The youngsters feed them, play with them, clean their cages out etc.

Depending on the time of year there are lots of extra activities. In the winter the paths need to be kept clear of snow, in spring the garden needs preparing and then vegetables planted and grown, in early autumn the fruit and vegetables are picked and they all help make jam and bottle up the vegetables for use throughout the winter. 

Ionica, who joined the House of Roses “family” last October has some additional skills. He has a diagnosis of autism but in the past attended a special professional school where he learnt to cook and to do some wood work. He has been able to help fix the rabbit hutch and to help build a kennel for the new dog, Billy. Ionica enjoys cooking and he and Irma make a good team in the kitchen as Irma is very capable and he can teach her new skills. Ionica is very much a loner, and it is difficult to assess if this is due to his autism or to his previous experiences in state care. The staff report that when he arrived he didn’t smile or make eye contact and he now does both of these things. He can read and write and likes to use the computer. This again makes him more advanced than the others and possibly he feels he doesn’t have much in common with them. So it is good when he engages in tasks with the others.

In addition to the 3 full time staff who work shifts there are several student volunteers who come and help several times a week. This is good experience for them, usually prior to starting University, but also great for the young people to mix with lots of different people.

The “family” also attend any events happening in the town. This year they have been to the fair, theatre, cinema and several local outdoor events. They have also enjoyed visits to the museum and to the fire station where they learnt what happens in an emergency.

Several of the young people in House of Roses have already reached their maximum potential but it is important that they maintain the skills they have learnt and live fulfilling lives. House of Roses enables them to do this.

THANK YOU to Humanity at Heart for supporting this project.

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Update from Hannah

I have made lots of new friends! This family visits Vis De Copil everyday. They do school work and play, and have fun like children should do.

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Volunteering in Romania

Hi, I am Hannah from Hassocks, and I am currently volunteering at the wonderful Vis de Copil centre in Arad, Romania, which your donations support. Vis de Copil is a place which provides support to families, the homeless, and street children. It is a safe place to play, do homework, eat, shower, meet people, and get support (among many other things). For today here are some children playing on the play equipment which your donations to Humanity at Heart funded. Stay tuned for much more over the next few weeks ...

Friday, 8 July 2016

Volunteers' Tea Party

We had a lovely sunny afternoon in the garden of one of our long serving volunteers, Kay. The sun came out and we all enjoyed lots of tea, cake and scones, as well as the beautiful garden and views of the South Downs.
Many thanks to Kay for the use of her house and garden.

Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Practical help for the elderly in Petrosani

You may remember that last Autumn one of our volunteers, Stephanie, accompanied me on a visit to our projects in Romania. When she returned she made an Appeal for extra funds, and so far has raised almost £800. We have already spent £200 helping Vis de Copil buy play equipment for their Mother and Toddler group. But we also made £400 available for Speranta Colonie, to set up a fund to give practical help to elderly people in the Colony. Adina, the Centre Manager, together... with her excellent volunteers, have used this money to support 5 elderly people. They have repaired a chimney, re-connected an electricity supply, fixed a broken water pipe, provided gas cylinders for cooking, repaired a gate, and provided firewood and vitamin pills for all. An excellent example of direct action having a really big impact on vulnerable and poor people’s lives.
Mrs Burlec had a water supply connected to her home

Mrs. Cioubutaru had her chimney fixed so she could use her stove for heating and cooking

Mr. Viorel had his home reconnected to the electricity supply

We helped Mrs. Natanga by buying her a calor gas cylinder for cooking.

Monday, 25 January 2016

Shoeboxes for poor families in Petrila

Providenta Divina were able to give Christmas shoeboxes to many families living in real poverty.  The shoeboxes came from Link to Hope, based in Worthing, so many thanks to them.