From Maria's Desk

Leeds, England registered UK Charity No.1087961
Kingsport, USA charitable non-profit # 86-0957704
Oradea, Romania registered Charity No.14839712

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Wow, 2009 is nearly gone! Can you believe that?

I can and I’m actually happy for it! It has been a hard year. Not because of the work I did but because of the emotional problems that many of the people I’m working with face each day. The financial crises? Maybe! But I’ve heard many times this year that we, the Romanian people, live in a financial crises for the last 20 years!! For many, their entire life has been one long financial crisis!

So, why was 2009 harder for me??

On reflection, I think because of TIME!!! People are busier than ever to stop and listen to their “neighbour”. It seems that there are so many things we need to give up doing because we “don’t have time for them anymore”!! We always find the excuses of why “time flies”?? Sometimes good ones, sometimes bad ones!

I was far from perfect on this subject in 2009. There were times when I needed to stop and listen to my “neighbour” and I did not! There were times when I thought that there will be “someone else” that can do that particular job or take the place of comforting others, and I’m not needed! I was happy and pleased for a moment … then I regretted it, that I was not there for that person, at that moment of need.

In November, as I was visiting USA and UK, I was surprised to see so many Christmas decorations all over the places. Christmas songs in every shop, even more than that, discussion that “Christmas holiday should be considered Winter holiday”?!!

But what about the CHILD that was born in Bethlehem years ago in order for YOU and ME to have life? Where is HE now? Where is He is all this “busyness”? Well, HE IS EVERYWHERE! And please my friends, don’t allow this Christmas to be taken away by the sweet music and sparkling decorations! Keep your eyes on the stable! Make your Christmas to be different!!

There are many people and children in Romania and around the World that won’t have all the “celebration lights” in their homes! They won’t have the food, cakes and the gifts that we all do! To be honest, I’m not looking forward to this Christmas. Of course, I look forward to spending time with my family and friends but I do not like all the questions such as: ”what did you get as a gift this Christmas? What new clothes do you have? Where do you plan to spend the New Year’s Eve??...and so on.

So what is important?

“The first Christmas changed the world”, this Christmas you can change the world for some one!  I encourage you to make at least one person happy! Maybe one of your old friends that you’ve not been in touch with for a long time, or a member of your family. Send an encouragement card, e- mail or a small gift that tells them and shows them the great news, and the real meaning of Christmas.

Maybe you could even touch the life a child from Romania, a family in Romania living in poverty. If you really don’t have any idea of how to do it, I can give you some!

  • Sponsor an S.O.S (Sack of Smiles) full of great things like hygiene products, educational products, sweets, and so on that gets to a child that without it will probably have nothing this Christmas. Although it has been a tough year for many of us, who of us is really facing a Christmas of NOTHING? You can donate any amount, but one full S.O.S. is £30 / $50

  • Maybe you could sponsor a DOLL for a girl that was dreaming of one for the whole year....Maybe she never had a chance to hold one, just to see it on TV or in a picture. The cost for it £5 / $8

  • Sponsor a TOY CAR for a boy that looks for adventure and wants to see how it is to have one. The cost for it £5 / $8

  • Or perhaps a CHRISTMAS CAKE for a poor family, for a homeless family that do not have the facilities to prepare one. In this way they can enjoy having something different and very special.
    Today, they can only dream. With £10 / $16 you
    can make a difference. You can make their dream REALITY.

  • Every year we try to bring our kids from different projects together and have a party with them. This year we would like to have a “CHRISTMAS PARTY” for all the Clubs we have during the year in Smiles: the Princess Club, Angel clubs, Gepiu Youth and all will appreciate a gift during the time together. For nearly 20 kids that we have is costing us around £100 /$160.

    So if you can help us, we really appreciate it!!

Before I close this report, the last one this year in this format, I would like to say THANK YOU to ALL of you for everything you did and are doing for us in Romania during 2009. Thank you from all the Smiles Staff and the Smiles people that benefit from your help!!

I pray you will have a great Christmas and a great time with your family and friends but don’t forget the baby Jesus that came to this earth for us, for you and me and let’s celebrate His birth not the bright lights of what Christmas has become today!

Thank you and wish you a very Happy Christmas!!

Sincerely, Maria Cimpoca and Romanian Team

Previous letters from Maria:
November 2009
October 2009  September 2009  August 2009
 June 2009  May 2009  April 2009


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