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The Ruse Centre for Social Support has a tradition of staging children’s events on 1st June which is, of course, the International Day of the Child.

This year, we felt like doing something slightly different by extending the duration of the activities and throwing the doors of the facility open so that children from the neighbourhood could participate. This proved especially valuable for mums on what turned out to be a rather cold and miserable day.

On 1st June, 2010 from roughly 10.00 until 12.30 the complex was teeming with children, many of them from the pre-school age-group. However, during this period, our good friends from RALIS arrived with a group of young adults with disabilities who threw themselves into the melee with great enthusiasm. A team coordinated by Eli, Roumi and Toni linked face-painting and with the decoration of clay models and a great deal of other messy play. The older kids especially enjoyed throwing darts at paint-filled balloons while a group of weenies emptied the ball pool in the playroom while searching for a miniature car someone had lost. It was enjoyable bedlam.

After a lunchtime break, Eli, Roumi, Toni, David and his daughter, Annie gave karaoke performances to a large and enthusiastic audience that joined in the dancing and singing. This event was charmingly compered by Eli. The adult performers were joined by teenaged clients from Striklevo who just love to dance.

We’d like to thank Arena Media for the provision of sound equipment and technical support. The Open Society Club provided 50 T-shirts that were distributed to young participants during the afternoon. These bear the butterfly emblem of the complex.

Above our reception desk hangs a vivid reminder of the fun and games, a large tableaux covered in hand-prints and messages from children too numerous to mention by name.

Over all, between 80 and 90 children participated in one way or another. A fabulous day!