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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAUnder the motto “Growing stronger together” young clients and school volunteers from the Complex of Social Services for Children and Families “travelled” through Europe

Despite the lack of electricity caused by a failure in the neighbourhood network, the youngsters managed to celebrate Europe Day – 9 May 2012 – with lots of creativity and improvisation.

The event was totally planned and organized by students from the city’s schools of European languages, tourism and catering and fashion and design. This followed a comprehensive course in project implementation and fundraising provided by staff from the complex designed to provide teenagers with the confidence and know-how to run their own projects at school or in the community.

Europe Day gave the teenage organizers the opportunity to create their own event for the clientele of the complex from beginning to end (advised and supported by adult tutors) and to delight the children by giving them opportunities for active participation and demonstrating their talents.

All participants in the celebration, including representatives of Regional and Municipal Administration, teachers from the three schools, foster parents and many friends took part in a train journey through Europe en route from Bulgaria to Belgium, sampling local cuisine from each country visited.

They learned a lot of information about each country and its capital.

Finally, of course, they returned triumphantly to Bulgaria, where – despite the lack of conventional sound equipment (because of the power cut) – the students and younger children, performed with singing, dancing and a special fashion show prepared by the help of two students of fashion and design.

Everybody went at home with gifts – books, provided by the European Information Centre and lots of balloons.

In June, having successfully completed the interactive course, the students will receive original certificates made for them by the graphic designer Silvia Staneva – a friend of “Equilibrium”.

Thanks to all of the participants and organizers for a wonderful day.