Today, we have been presented with a honorary certificate by the Bulgarian Red Cross Association for our work with them in 2013 in providing assistance to refugees from the Syrian conflict in Bulgaria.
In 2013, Bulgaria was overwhelmed by a wave of refugees fleeing the conflict in Syria. The increasing number of refugees entering the country in the summer were faced with dire conditions in Bulgaria’s overpopulated refugee centers and the extent of their suffering worsening with the arrival of winter.
Human Dynamics contributed to the Bulgarian Red Cross initiative to deliver food and items of immediate need to the refugee centers across the country. Staff from Human Dynamics's Sofia office, in a partnership with the Bulgarian Red Cross, provided a donation for the children of the refugees. This was matched by a donation from the company.
Our focus was on the most vulnerable – the babies and their mothers. Donation included goods, which are especially needed by young children. The materials supplied by our company included baby formula, pampers, pacifiers and wound creams for babies, which were disbursed to mothers and families in the Kovachevci camp by our and Red Cross' staff.
Our contribution was distributed to several areas including a refugee reception centre in Harmanli, on the border with Turkey, and another refugee centre in the village of Kovachevtsi, 40 km distance from Sofia. Our representatives accompanied the Red Cross team to the village of Kovachevtsi, where, out of 300 people, 108 are children.
With the conflict in Syria ongoing, there has been a surge in the number of illegal immigrants and refugees arriving in Bulgaria; since the beginning of the 2014, around 7000 illegal immigrants have crossed the Bulgarian border, half of them from Syria. More than 11 000 asylum-seekers are expected in Bulgaria by the end of 2014.
Refugees and asylum-seekers have fled horrible conflicts and persecution hoping for safety and understanding in Bulgaria. [...] But at the moment, many are struggling to have their basic needs met.
— Boris Cheshirkov, spokesperson for the UN refugee agency, UNHCR
For the refugees, Bulgaria is often viewed the safest option. Food, clothing and medicine are largely funded by donations from ordinary Bulgarians to the local Red Cross or directly to refugee reception centres, rather than from government resources.