Everywhere We Go! – Moldova, November (Donation 88)

Plaiul Soarelui – www.facebook.com/Plusuncromozom

The Sunshine Appela’s 88th consecutive donation was in Chisinau, Moldova. With the Covid pandemic closing a lot of charities down, we had a mammoth challenge finding a suitable recipient, but by enlisting the help of a local woman, Natalia Donnets who works for the Moldovan FA we traced, Plaiul Soarelui, which translates into Sunshine Country. They are a small family run farm on the outskirts of Chisinau, who assist children with downs syndrome, get some normality in their life by teaching them skills on the farm and how to look after themselves. The presentation itself took place in the reception area of the Jazz Hotel, where a large amount of Scots were staying.

Over 150 Fans turned up with two pipers as well as a delegation of 5 from the charity including 3 of the children for an informal get together. Some Scotland fans also brought toys and books etc. for the children which were all greatly received.

The £3,000 from TASA and the Scotland fans, was the largest donation they had ever received.

As this was the first time in years, chartered flights were used by fans to get to a destination, the tour operators allowed us to have a collection of Moldovan currency, which between the 3 flights, raised around 67,000 Moldovan Lei, which is around £2,800 almost doubling the donation. The money has safely arrived in Moldova and will be in the hands of  Plaiul Soarelui  by the end of January.

Here’s a bit more info about Plaiul Soarelui, from our initial contact in Moldova and from before the visit was arranged:
“In Chisinau there are some sort of therapy activities for such kids, but there’s literally nothing for someone who is approaching adulthood or is a young adult. Kids with Down’s need to be emotionally and physically engaged, and if they’re not – they lose their mental capacities. They have a few youngsters under their care who – for instance – have been playing the piano and reciting poems, or even studying at a community college, but now they can barely speak because they were isolated during the pandemic.

The parents have decided to try to get them engaged by working on a farm and basically these parents quit their jobs in the city and moved to the farm for the sake of the kids and they teach them how to grow fruits and vegetables, make preserves and etc. They are also organising a small theatre and are planning to engage the kids in a sort of a workshop, where they would be making toys and souvenirs for other kids with disabilities.

At this point things are difficult financially, they are hoping that they would be able to buy the farm by the end of Spring next year, or else one of the founders will lose their house in Chisinau, but as I was told there is no way they would be quitting the farm.

They have been visited by other families who have children with Down’s and other disabilities, who are interested in moving there, with the foundation hoping that they would be able to host more families if the financial situation would allow to make repairs and extend the living quarters – as an example, they do not have water – so they have to drag water from a water well.”

I’m sure you can agree that Plaiul Soarelui are yet another fantastic recipient of TASA’s donation.