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„Rainbow“ – a small children’s home provides a caring environment for orphans

Georgia is a small multi-ethnic country located just south of the Great Caucasus. Here the small village of Saguramo, which is popular as a recreation locality, is home to the "Rainbow" children's home. It is located not far from the capital Tblissi, which is home to more than one million inhabitants out of a total of less than four million countrywide.

In 1999, supported by the Dutschidse family, the initiative "Pedagogical Province" began to work here with children and young people from disadvantaged backgrounds or with mental health problems. On partly donated, partly purchased land a beautiful wooden house was built, which in addition to five rooms also hosted a small doctor's office and a workshop and became the new home of the first five adolescents. Instead of a doctor's fee the medical practice was given a few chicken and thus the beginning of a farm was made. Over time, a horse and a pair of ducks were bought and a ram was added as a gift from the villagers. As the farm slowly developed through the construction of a barn and a stable and the cultivation of the fields, the initiative was also able to admit its first permanent foster children when the construction of a second building was completed in 2004.

When state recognition was finally granted in 2008, two 6-year-old boys, an 8-year-old girl and a 9-year-old boy joined the family. For this purpose, the “rainbow association” was established as a legal entity and the organisation was subsequently recognised as an infant orphanage. This offer of the Dutschidse family was urgently needed, because at that time the extremely large state orphanages were gradually closed due to the intolerable conditions and people were desperately looking for alternatives.

 

The Rainbow initiative regularly receives help from schools, visitors and young people. Moreover, a number of volunteers join the initiative each year through the Friends of Waldorf Education. Currently, even a small sports field is being built behind the rainbow building with the help of the company of a volunteer’s father. Contact to other initiatives, organisations and friends remains very important, since the public financial aids do not completely cover the costs of the initiative.

 

The medical practice, which is also part of the initiative, was later moved from the wooden building into the newly added stone building, the "rainbow house". Once a week consultation hours are held here and a small garden with medical plants is kept to conduct studies. On weekends training courses for aspiring art therapist take place at the rainbow house and from time to time there are events, for example, together with the student orchestra at the Waldorf School in Tbilisi.

Now after all these years of wonderful work, a new step is taking shape: due to the decreasing number of orphans in Georgia and the willingness of more families to take in orphans, demand shifts. Increasingly, there is a need for places for so-called “difficult” children, i.e. children with special needs. They can usually not be appropriately cared for neither by a family or in a regular home. The "Pedagogical Province" could be one such place. But in order for children with special needs to find a home here, a new building is needed. Together with the Friends of Waldorf Education, the parent organisation strives to raise the required equity capital for a successful funding plan.

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