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Events :: Достъп :: BFPA actively participated in the “Ambassador for a day” campaign

BFPA actively participated in the “Ambassador for a day” campaign

Group photoSofia, March 7, 2019

February 1 and 2, Plovdiv, regional meeting of the health mediators. There were the usual topics with a new addition – Evelina Dimitrova is a part of the meeting. She is a young Roma girl from the village of Galiche, a student in the 11th grade and one of the 12 finalists in the essay competition of the “Ambassador for a day” campaign, initiated for a second year by the British Embassy in Sofia. Participating in the campaign are 12 women ambassadors of their respective countries, accredited  to Bulgaria, 12 women - NGO leaders and the 12 finalists who in February play the role of an Ambassador and a leader of an NGO. Even just for a few days Evelina viewed the world from the perspective of the Swiss Ambassador H.E. Muriel Berset Kohen and the Executive Director of BFPA Dr. Radosveta Stamenkova. Evelina’s dream is to study International relations at Sofia University. Her meeting with the health mediators and the field activities in Stolipinovo gave her extra motivation. The next step followed ten days later – a visit to the Kosharnik Roma neighbourhood of Montana under the ZOV programme of the Swiss government and afterwards at the Swiss embassy and BFPA’s office in Sofia.
The closing event of the campaign gathered all participants, partners and a lot of media representatives and guests on March 7th, a day before International Women’s Day, under the patronnage of Bulgaria’s Vice-President Iliyana Yotova who also had a young deputy – a Vice-President for a day.

EvelinaAt the event Evelina’s speech was of the most exciting and memorable ones. Here is an excerpt: “I wanted to come out of my comfort zone and here I am, a 17-year old Roma girl from the village of Galiche, from the poorest part of Bulgaria – the Northwest, standing before you because I think I have no reason to complain and to say that here in this country nothing happens. I consider myself rich because I feel happy and bring happiness.“
The aim of the campaign in which we will gladly participate again next year, is to give a chance and an opportunity to young girls to work and participate in activities for solving all kinds of social problems. As the Ambassador of Great Britain in Bulgaria H.E. Emma Hopkins said – “At 17 one has a lot of energy and ideas for solving problems. When I was 17, I wrote letters to world dictators to tell them to immediately stop oppressing the people in their own countries. “
159 essays from all over the country were received from young girls who wanted to work in different fields – education, environment, marginalized groups, media, culture, etc. For next year we will insist for “healthcare” to be added to the competition. We eagerly await the 2020 campaign and we hope that more young girls will be inspired to participate, to voice their opinion and to have an impact on social matters that are important for them!

 

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Romeo and Juliet from Kosharnik district

Montana, September 12, 2019

The Shakespeare and Servantes tour around the Roma neighborhoods of Bulgaria went to the Kosharnik district of Montana. Talented and enthusiastic local children, selected by the Roma actress Natalia Tzekova presented fragments of the drama “Romeo and Juliet” from a newer angle and with adequate health messages. The aim of the social theatre is with the means of art to inform the public in a comprehensible manner about the harm of early marriages and early school drop outs, the benefits of contraception, the importance of prevention of sexually transmitted infections. The messages target young people as well as their parents, some of which joined the scenes to demonstrate their support for what their children are saying. With his monologue about the Roma Don Quixote Valeri Lekov, also part of the production team, explained some of the community specificities. Between the sketches there were “real life” scenes – a woman from the community visits a doctor who explains the benefits of contraception and debunks some “fake news” about contraceptive methods – all this with a lot of humour and highly appreciated by the audience.

 
BFPA kicks off a new two-year project “I Want to Know”

Sofia, August 23, 2019

With an official green light on August 23, as of Sep 1st BFPA starts activities on a new project – “I WANT TO KNOW – User friendly access to HIV and STI counseling and testing for Roma youth from vulnerable communities”, supported by ViiV Healthcare’s Positive Action Programme via CAF (Charities Aid Foundation) UK. The project’s duration is 2 years, during which BFPA will provide voluntary counseling and testing (VCT) with a focus on young Roma men (but not excluding women as well) from poor and marginalized districts through its coordinators in the five BFPA branches in Bulgaria - Pleven, Stara Zagora, Plovdiv, Russe and Sofia. Activities will begin with a kick-off meeting and VCT training for the service providers, in parallel with informing and awareness raising by elaboration of info materials, disseminated in the targeted communities by one of the closest and dearest BFPA partners – Health Mediators.

 
Social and health messages in Roma neighbourhoods through theatre

Sofia, July 31, 2019

On the last day of July the Roma neighbourhood Fakulteta in Sofia was visited by William Shakespeare and Miguel de Servantes. We started with the best – Romeo and Juliet and Don Quixote. The Roma actress Natalia Tzekova staged a funny and educational performance with the participation of talented children and youth from the neighborhood in which the art was intertwined with social and health related messages. Romeo and Juliet demonstrated the benefits of family planning, contraception and health education and spoke in verse about the harm of school dropout, early marriages and children having children. The participants performed short sketches which contained the same messages, debunked myths and demonstrated how powerful personal example is. Don Quixote explained some of the community specificities which started a short discussion on stage who should take example from whom about health and health prevention. In between sketches and play scenes the participants shared their own personal stories about health and family planning. At the end of the play as a recap of what was presented they raised a few banners with messages on the same topic”: “I have dreams and goals”, “I am not an incubator for babies”, “Ask – someone will tell you”. The audience appreciated the messages and the element of humor in the sketches and play scenes.

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Events :: Достъп :: BFPA actively participated in the “Ambassador for a day” campaign