Welcome to HAO Romania website!
HAO bring young people with disability out of Romania's institutions and orphanages into homes in the community. We support them to develop the skills they need to live independent full lives, make friends, get jobs. We also work in the community with Parents and Carers of children with disability and with young people with disability.
How it all started in the first place...
In 1999 in a bid to localize the organisation, HAO founded Fundatia pentru O Viata mai Buna (FVB), to take advantage of the reputation of HAO's longevity in the field of disability and in its reputation in the field of disability services both in Romania and in Ireland.
In 1990 after seeing young children with disability living in appalling conditions in Romania’s orphanages, James Dillon, with a small group of volunteers sent aid trucks with food and clothing to the orphanages providing much needed relief; ‘Babies of Romania’ became a registered Irish Charity in 1991. 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). As the ‘babies’ grew and became young adults, Babies of Romania decided to change its name to Health Action Overseas (HAO). By 1994 HAO had moved from providing relief to more sustainable development - educational and therapeutic programmes for disabled children and young people living in the Placement Centres and Orphanages; training programmes for local authority staff and in 2002 HAO opened its first group home. In 2007 as a progression from group home living, 6 young people moved into 2 apartments. All of these young people are now in full time employment, 2 have moved into their own apartments with financial support from HAO.
Health Action Overseas - UK is a newly set up and registered UK Charity, helping people with disabilities to participate as full members of society in a way that respects their dignity and rights by providing support and activities which develop the skills and capabilities of people living with disabilities to live independently and to gain education and employment which allows them to participate in society as mature and responsible individuals. HAO UK works in partnership with Fundatia pentru o Viata mai Buna (FVB) and with Health Action Oversaes - Ireland to assist local and government authorities in host countries.
Health Action Overseas UK (HAO UK) will provide training to FVB, delivered in part, by UK volunteers and will support FVB to embed its Independent Living Programme as a progression for all of the young people living in Romania’s Institutions where they have been labelled as 'disabled'.
Abandoned in one of Romania's orphanges at the age of 3, Vasile was labelled 'irrecuperable' (unable to learn or progress) at 9 years old, he was unable to walk or talk when we first found him. Vasile is a very different person today, with our support he lives in the community, has a full time job and has just taken out a loan to buy his own studio apartment. Vasile is one of FVB's many success stories.
HAO Romania Counterparts (to stay)
Health Action Overseas - Ireland
Carmichael House - North Brunswick Street, Dublin 7, Ireland
Tel: 086 4040429
Charity Number: 10503
Registered Company Number: 407808
Health Action Overseas - UK
9 Bent's Green Road SHEFFIELD South Yorkshire S11 7RA
Tel: +44 (01142) 302265
Email: Christine Glew
Charity Number: 1145712
Registered Company No: 07529686