The reason we came in 1991

1991:

James Dillon with a small group of volunteers sent aid trucks to Romania to provide relief to children living in Government Orphanages.  Babies of Romania  became a registered Irish Charity.

1991 – 1999:

  • Large numbers of volunteers travelled from Ireland and the UK to work as ‘carers’ in orphanages in Nicoresti (Galati County) and Negru Voda (Constanta County) to work with children with disabilities providing much needed relief.
  • As the ‘babies’ grew and became young adults, Babies of Romania  decided to change its name to Health Action Overseas(HAO)
  • HAO moved from providing relief work to more sustainable development with educational and therapeutic programmes for disabled children and young people living in the Placement Centres and Orphanages and training programmes for local authority staff working in the institutions and orphanages.

1999:

Fundatia pentru o Viata mai Buna (FVB) is registered as a Romania Charity by HAO as the first step to localising their activities in Romania

2002:

Casa James Dillon Group Home is opened in Constanta for 8 young disabled people from Negru Voda Institution

2006:

FVB becomes accredited in Romania as a training provider for staff competencies in the social model of disability.

2007:

  • Casa Catalina group home in Galati is built by Irish volunteers led by Paul Trainer a Dublin based builder and property developer.  The project is funded by HAO with contributions from Project Mustard Seed (a UK charity) and Paul Trainer.
  • As a progression to more independent living from group home living 6 young people from Casa James Dillon move into 2 apartments.
  • A day service was opened in Constanta for 30 young people with disability.

2010:

  • Parent/Carers Network is established in Constanta providing a forum where parents of disabled children can share experiences, advice and knowledge and provide practical support to each other.
  • Two young people from FVB apartments receive a loan from HAO to purchase their own studio apartments.
  • Five women (Galati County Council employees) working in Casa Catalina receive their Certificate of Competence awards for the social model of disability.