Wednesday, August 13, 2008
by Angie Simon
This morning we started with Tom sharing about our Unifund students that we sponsor through our our organization. our Unifund students are Romanian college students that have lived in the Beclean orphanage between 14-18 yrs of their life. Most were abandoned at birth and some were abandoned when they were toddlers. They all grew up together in the largest orphanage in Europe, a house that had 600 kids. Our Unifund program was initially set up by Margo Peterson and her mother Bonnie Dirks in an effort to raise support for their college education. This program gives these orphans an opportunity to obtain a Bachelor’s degree and a Master’s Degree while they learn to socialize back into society in hopes of pouring back into Romania. They can go to the university, trade school or seminary free of charge as long as they are keeping their grades up. We just entered several of these kids into our sponsorship program. (If you would like more information regarding our Unifund program sponsorship program, please email email@example.com.)
We traveled nearly seven hours to Beclean from Oradea today. The Unifund students greeted us with open arms and it was so wonderful to see them again. They were laughing and singing and really appreciated that we were there to see them. Some of them have jobs now and had to make special arrangements to get there to see us. Tom introduced them to the rest of the team and we all walked together down to a restaurant where we could all fellowship together.
Bonnie was delighted to finally meet the students that she and her family has had such a passion. As we all walked together, they shared stories about their lives and their plans for the future. Angie took interviews with the students while Elizabeth took photos and registered them into the program. One of our success stories from the Unifund program is about Alex Chitoi. he has already received his Master’s Degree and is involved with social work. Alex did an interview with us last year and it was so great to see him again! He really helped us get some good information on the students while providing other essential facts about our students and their stories. Bonnie and Sandi also got some great information while speaking to some students over dinner and we finished of the evening with some ice cream! We are staying in Bistritia tonight and tomorrow we will head back to see the Unifund kids before we head back to Oradea.