Through our considerable experience with Elderly Care which started in Cihei in 2010 – we came to realise certain anomalies with the Romanian system we need to work within. One such issue is that as part of our Authorisation to Function as Elderly Care Homes, we are prohibited by law to take residents under the age of 65 years. This has caused us some challenges over the years, as sadly several people are presented to us for help who are living alone, possibly sick and definitely vulnerable – but because they are under 65 years, we could be in trouble with the authorities if we took them into our care.
Unofficially, we were told that, due to there being no facilities for Adult Assisted Living in Bihor County, a ‘blind eye would be turned’’ to one or two ‘under 65’s’ in our facilities. However, it got us thinking!
How could The Smiles Foundation once again lead the pack on providing a well documented needed service without over-stretching our resources and supporters? After all, you provide all we need to do the great work in Romania we are so proud of. Your obedience to God through your Giving and amazing generosity, is what makes the difference for us in doing our work.
We didn’t want to launch another £1million /$1.5 million project to build a new facility. We looked at that option to build on land we already own in Cihei – but to build from scratch, as we found with JFL in Salonta – would be a huge pressure for the next couple of years (or more). SO we thought harder. After a short time, we considered we have an amazing facility already built that was not being fully utilised and with some modification, could serve the proposed purpose.Architects were consulted, Drawings prepared and Construction men provided quotes. We concluded that for approximately £50,000 ($65,000) we could remodel part of our Tileagd Complex (built 2005-2008) accommodating the new Adult Assisted Living Facility and still be able to have all our other activities functioning in another part of the large Complex building. So this is what we did and in January 2017, the work began.
Six months of hard work and extensive redevelopment had the job completed by June 30th. That was a miracle in itself. The budget was set optimistically, and in reality we spent £60,000 ($78,000) in all the required changes. We then had to spend another £25,000 ($32,500) on equipping and furnishing the new facility. But with an investment of £85,000 ($110,500) we had another wonderful facility for Residential Care to add to the Smiles portfolio. As planned, the new facility was ready to open on July 1st 2017.
The project provides ‘exactly what it says on the tin’ – Assisted Living (Support for Living) for all adults over 18 years of age who are in need of practical help with daily life.
We have nurses and carers on staff but not all our residents need ‘medical’ care as such, some just continued support with well established medical issues.Although the entire facility was ready July 1st, we have been slowly receiving residents so as to get new staff appointed and up to speed with the service we require.
Smiles Deputy Director, Georgi Lazau (nee Opreanu) is responsible for the facility, helped by Administrative Assistant Ligia Mitra and Social Worker, Ioana Pontos. Many other new staff will be appointed as support for the project allows. Many prospective residents can only contribute a part of the monthly cost and the balance needs to be sponsored or raised from supporters.
It is a challenging thought that we currently have 25 beds empty in Tileagd Assisted Living. (October 1st 2017) Not because there is no need or people don’t want to come, but because we need to have the resources available to meet the needs with more staff, food, medicine and supplies.
This project, and the people who will benefit from it need your support, so please consider how you can best help whether with a monthly sponsorship or fund-raising event on behalf of this exciting new Project.
The operating cost for Tileagd Assisted Living is budgeted to be £6,500 ($8,450) per month.
The average cost of caring for a resident in Tileagd Assisted Living is £250 ($325) per month.
(Sponsored residents who leave the facility will have their allocated sponsorship transferred to other residents in need of support)