Goal, Aims, Objectives
The Leaders & how to contact us
A very special summer holiday in Romania
Romania - some information
2006 - a new beginning
Sorina and Jamie make new friends
|In the summer of 2004, while their friends might have spent the summer break on foreign beaches, two Radcliffe youngsters organised a holiday with a difference.
Sorina Siddall (11), of Haworth Street, Radcliffe, and Jamie Jones (16), who lives on the St Thomas’ Estate, also in Radcliffe left the town on a mercy mission. They travelled for three days to needy villages in Eastern Europe in July, along with Sorina’s mother Raluca and stepfather Ian.
Raluca moved to Radcliffe from Romania with Sorina seven years ago, but in her home village of Ciceu in northern Romania, Raluca is still the owner of a plot of land the size of ten football pitches - and now the family wants to build on it to help, the people of her native country.
Ian and Raluca run the Transglobal Humanitarian Aid charity, set up in Radcliffe in 1988 to help the people of Romania, and the charity - based on Church Street, Radcliffe, is now planning to build a summer camp with five hostel buildings on the land.
Ian said: “The aim of the scheme is to give respite to carers of adults and orphan children in the village, and those living nearby. The local hospital can hold 60 people, but there are 110 patients currently in there, with 1,400 on the waiting list. Once the buildings are finished we hope to give respite to some of the old people in the village who are waiting for treatment or need to go into hospital. The plans are now drawn up for the hostel buildings and a house on the site, and Ian hopes that the foundations will be finished before the end of the year. The children from the nearby orphanages and their care workers and the workers’ children would be able to use the summer camp three times a year.
On their arrival of their latest three-week visit to Ciceu, they took along colouring books, pens and games equipment, and planned to invite the children along for a day of fun. Sorina said "They announced that we would be on the land the following morning after the church service on the Saturday night, and when we turned up on Sunday there were already 200 children waiting for us. We played games with them, and I managed talk to some of them using the Romanian that my mum has been teaching me. She talks to me in Romanian at home, I usually answer her in English, but now I’m using Romanian more and more.”
Along with the items for the children the charity took 200 pairs of glasses. walking sticks, walking frames and boxes of knitted items of clothing that are produced by a group of knitters in Bury, that have been donated to Transglobal. They also shipped over 12 computers from Radcliffe Riverside School. Jamie, a pupil at Radcliffe High at the time, asked teachers what they planned to do with old school computers that were being replaced - they were stacked in a classroom. The inquisitive youngster asked if they could be donated to charity to be used abroad and the school agreed.
Ian said: “In Romania, James helped the children to use the computers. They previously practised typing on a piece of paper with the letters drawn on. He also created a questionnaire to find out more about the children they were helping in the village.”
There had been one computer in the town hall and one in the school, to be used by more than 300 children.
‘We also hope at some stage to set a soup kitchen that old people in the village can use. Those who are well enough to get to us can bring a flask and get some soup and bread and also take it for someone who can’t get out. We can then keep an eye on the elderly and make the village more of a caring community.
Ian said he also has a vision to build sheds on the land that will accommodate two youngsters from the orphanages when they are 15. This is because at 16 they have to leave the orphanages and live on the street. Instead a number will be given accommodation and farmland to look after or animals to care for, and the charity will buy goods from them that they produce.
Ian explains: “This will pay for their keep and also help them save money far the future and become part of the village community. They may even be given work by people from the village once they turn 16. I also plan to show them how to service the machinery they use. The charity is hoping we will have some power tools donated to us, and it would be great to take them over for the people in the village and show them how to take care of them for the future.”
Jamie and Sorina also kept a diary while they were In Romania and recorded their visit with a video camera. Sorina said: “The most memorable moment for me was when we saw the children waiting for us on the land. We taught them English games and they seemed to have a lot of fun. I also made a friend to whom I gave some of my clothes."
Jamie went out into the field to work for three days and on the fourth even had a go at driving the horse and cart himself to bring the hay back from the field.
Next year the village 600 years old and the charity would like to take groups of people across to celebrate.
Plans have already been made to invite a Christian music group and a school orchestra from Tameside to join in the celebrations.
Ian said: “We have so many plans for this land and for the village. The people there are in full support and are grateful when we take items that have been donated over to them. “We hope that it will be June or July next year when we can start taking people in at the summer camp.”
If you would like to donate goods to Transglobal Humanitarian Aid please ring Ian or Ral on 0161 724 9935.
Here is Sorina driving a cart - watch out for that pedestrian!