Whom do we help

Why do we help abandoned and disadvantaged children? We believe that every child deserves to spend his or her childhood and formative years in a loving and safe family environment. Unfortunately, this is not always possible. If for some reason children have to grow up outside of their families, we want to give them the care and opportunities necessary for a harmonious development of their personality, talent and potential. Quite often, helping parents means helping children effectively. That’s why we’ve defined the following ten areas of assistance where our donors’ funds go and through which we believe we are improving the lives of many at-risk children.

pregnant mothers in need

…because no one can replace mom!

Sometimes a woman gets pregnant while in a difficult situation, something bad has happened along the way and she is unable to cope. However, thanks to the right help at the right time, she can become a loving and caring mother regardless of her background.

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For example, there is the story of a young mother Ester, barely 20 years old. She grew up in an orphanage and never knew a family life. Once she reached adulthood, she left the institutional care and returned to her parents, only to find out that they were not able to take care of her siblings, themselves or the house. That’s why she often ran away, met Jirka and soon fell pregnant. Worried that she wouldn’t be able to provide for her child, she panicked. Young parents had nowhere to live, no money.

Social services recommended the project At the Beginning, which supports mothers in a similarly difficult situation. The program workers helped with securing the housing, as well as baby clothes. Ester began to look forward to her daughter’s arrival. Nikola was born a few months ago, and both parents take good care of her. They often call in to get advice on how to take care of their baby properly. They are sure of one thing: Nikola will have a better childhood than her mother had.

Through financing projects like “At the Beginning”, we support pregnant women in need to help mothers to stay with their children and children to stay in the safe arms of moms!
families in difficult situations

…because a life crisis doesn’t have to mean a collapse of the family.

If parents love their children and want to provide for them, it is unacceptable to tear the family apart for social reasons.

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One example for all. Even though Eliška’s marriage has fallen apart, she is a caring mother to seven children. Their father has left them, and he’s not paying child support. Eliška, who suffers from epilepsy, is on maternity leave with her youngest child. The rent has thus become overdue. If her housing situation cannot be stabilized, Eliška faces eviction and even placement of her children in the institutional care – given the number of siblings they would certainly have to be divided into several facilities.

Despite her difficult situation, Eliška takes good care of her family. The children go to school, but they cannot afford school lunches or past class activities. Eliška cooks for them daily, reads to the children from books and guides them to read. Despite watching her budget, finding a new place to live would be very difficult for such a large family, so the social workers agreed with the landlord on a payment plan and Eliška is paying off the debt. Her maternity leave will end soon and she is looking for a job. In her difficult situation, she asked the Tereza Maxová Foundation for Children for help to get out of the debt spiral, and the social workers supported her request.

mothers from shelter homes to start again

…because improving the lives of mothers means giving their children a better future.

We support mothers to help them rebuild their lives upon leaving the shelter home, teach them how to plan and manage the family budget, how to avoid cumulating debts.

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“When we met, I didn’t realize my boyfriend was a jealous manipulator,” Dana says. “Our first weekend was amazing, followed by a flurry of messages asking how I was doing. And it was like that every time.” Dates became more frequent and Dana soon became pregnant. When she had to quit her job for maternity leave, she lost her home. So they moved in together with her partner’s mother. That’s when he became jealous, banning Dana from talking to strangers. She wasn’t allowed to leave the house alone. When their daughter was born, they moved out and even ended up in a hostel for a while, where their second baby girl was born.

But a new flat did not solve the problems. Her partner abused Dana psychologically, accusing her of being unable to take care of herself and her children. The physical assaults escalated. Fearing that he would harm her daughters, Dana contacted the social services with a request for shelter. However, her partner refused to hand over the children, so Dana returned home to her family. “The carousel of apologies and promises started rolling again,” says Dana. “The last straw for me was when he said he would kill me. I secretly packed up my things and left during the night with the kids.” Today, Dana and her daughters live in a shelter home and, thanks to the support of social workers, are trying to put the ugly memories behind them and form a new life. She has realised that she is able to provide for the children on her own and is taking steps to prepare for an independent life. She has joined a program that helps mothers in need find employment and housing, and believes she can give her family a new stable home.

We help mothers in need to put their lives back on track!
children to return from the institutional care back to the family

…for a better chance to succeed in life and create their own happy family.

Because children who grow up in a family environment have a better chance to succeed in life and create their own happy family than those who grew up in institutional care.

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Five-year-old Alenka and fourteen-year-old Mirek spent many months in a facility for children requiring immediate assistance. Parents used drugs for a long time, they rarely appeared, no one else visited the children, and they were consequently placed in a small family-type institutional facility.

The facility staff helped the siblings to get acquainted with the new environment and drew a so-called family map with them. It proved that Mirek was in touch with several relatives via social networks. After the first contact, the grandmother and aunt soon showed up at the care home.

Gradually, the aunt offered that the children could visit her. However, after much deliberation, her family decided that they were unable to offer other children a permanent home. More and more people started supporting children in various ways, and it was decided to organize a family conference in cooperation with the LATA organization. Seven relatives met with the children and created and drew a road map of support. The other grandmother decided to take the children into her care. Mirek was sceptical at first, after all, he had already experienced many disappointments, Alenka was full of optimism. Stays with grandma proved successful and the children had the opportunity to process their insecurities in therapy near grandmother’s residence because they began to live together. Mirek joined the care workers for a holiday trip, Alenka stayed with her grandma… “The court’s decision of grandma’s care was the most beautiful gift we were all waiting for,” said the social workers. “Today we are happy to watch the children enjoy time together in their extended family.”

The foundation supports projects helping more children find their way home from institutional care!
foster care and adoption

…because every child deserves love and needs to grow up in a safe, caring, accepting family environment.

And if the biological family fails them, it’s great that abandoned children can find people with big hearts who would give them a foster home.

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Lucie and Jan have raised their biological son and adoptive daughter, who is now an adult. 20 years ago, they decided to open their home and their arms to other children – they became foster parents. During that time, three children grew in the family before starting their independent life; the oldest foster daughter now has her own family. Now the couple has ten-year-old Karolína and nine-year-old Lada in temporary care. Both kids are musically gifted; Karolínka sings in the choir, her brother plays the cello. “We try to give children unconditional love as much as we can, they are a gift for us and they are wonderful. Thank you for the opportunity to make a few little beings happier, “writes Lucie.

More children are waiting for a miracle – for a family that will give them love; a safe home where they would be surrounded with their loved ones, with their own toys and books. A haven that will provide them with precious memories to take with them when moving on, and where they can return. Help us to support foster care families and the Adopce.com project that promotes adoption and foster care and accompanies people through the whole process of adopting a child.

We hope to help more abandoned children find a loving home!
abused children find their way out of hell

…because unfortunately, some children have to live through more than they can bear.

The number of abused children cases is on the rise. Speaking up is not easy, but it is necessary to make sure the children know where to ask for help. Specialized psychotherapists help mistreated and sexually abused children, offering assistance and helping them to reclaim their happy childhood.

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“Hello… Can I write to you?” A ten-year-old girl writes to the Children’s Crisis Center helpline chat. She is glad that she can write under a nickname, no one can see or hear her. “Lots of crying emojis. I offer to help her under any circumstances,” says the consultant. “I learn that her mother works night shifts. An uncle (as they call him) then looks after the girl. Something strange has happened recently. Uncle wanted to wash her in the bathtub, stroking her inner thighs, even though she told him she was able to clean herself. She had to promise him she wouldn’t tell anyone… And she had broken that promise now. I feel her fear and shame, and I praise her courage to describe what had happened. And I offer a different perception of secrets: they can be good or bad. A good secret is to be surprised by a gift or share thoughts and ideas with a friend. The bad secrets are hurtful and forced promises of silence.

She thinks for a moment and then replies that her secret is probably bad. She longs for it to be over and for her mom to know. We plan how to tell her mother about the situation. We go through the conversation step by step so that my mother can understand what had happened. We are considering the possibility of a drawing. The girl likes that! She feels greatly relieved. We say goodbye and I assure her that should she or her mother need it, they can call the non-stop helpline: 777 715 215.“

The foundation supports expert assistance to help children break through the vicious circle of heartbreak and misery!
children from institutional care to enjoy a happy childhood

…because the orphanage teddy bear is simply not enough for a happy childhood.

Children from care homes lack close and exclusive relationships, attention that would be paid only to them, and experiences that shape a fulfilled childhood.

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Photos from holidays, songs by the campfire, trips to the ZOO or a hike to the lookout tower… Do you find it ordinary? Children from institutional care do not. They need to make memories, they need attention to help them develop harmoniously just like their peers do. Our foundation helps them to enjoy trips, great leisure activities and holidays as they should be – not to be deprived of the beautiful formative experiences that everyone cherishes for a lifetime. Leisure programs and stays allow the children to spend time without the presence of aunts and uncles – with whom they are in contact all year round – and find new friends outside the care home. “I would like to thank you for a beautifully prepared celebration for my 18th birthday. I’ve never enjoyed anything like this. I am so glad that you are helping us and doing everything you can to give us the best time,” wrote Vašek. “We don’t want to go home, we want to be at the camp forever!” wrote the children from the Children’s Care Home in Krnsko. “Last year at the end of my stay I had one big wish that it would all happen again. And that will come true because this year, thanks to the Tereza Maxová Foundation, I will go again,” Patrik wrote to us. “We will go swimming and cook goulash. We are looking forward to it,” Radek wrote.

It is not just about education, promoting independence and developing skills. It is also about feeling content, unique and self-confident. It will help children live a fulfilling life and start their own stable families in the future. This is exactly the chance children receive with the gift of a happy childhood.

We want to help children from institutional care to enjoy the experiences that are part of a fulfilled, happy childhood!
young people from the orphanage study

…because each person has a unique potential and deserves to be supported in their dreams and plans.

Investing in the education of disadvantaged young people is the best investment for their future.

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Nikolas grew up in an orphanage from the age of four. “After a while, I started to see it as an opportunity and not as a punishment. Because life might not turn out as they wanted for a lot of children leaving the institutional care, I started to use what this care has to offer. I was able to graduate from a dream high school, and thanks to experience exchange visits in Spain and the UK. I am now preparing for a bachelor’s degree and I would like to continue with a master’s degree in business law. My education would not be possible without the care home and the support from charity foundations. I am very grateful for their help. I would now like to offer my example and motivation to others. It doesn’t matter what unfavourable situation you are in right now. It is important to use all available options, or look for new ones to pursue your dreams,” writes Nikolas.

We help young people like Nikolas fulfil their dreams of education!
to heal wounded souls of children

…because the early life emotional deprivation leaves scars in the fragile child’s soul, wounds that take a lifetime to heal.

The early life emotional deprivation, separation from family, loss of support and collapse of the world as you have known it leaves scars in the fragile child’s soul, wounds that take a lifetime to heal. Psychotherapy helps children cope with these experiences.

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Eight-year-old Adélka and five-year-old Pavlík lived with their mother Lenka and dad Pavel in a small town near Prague. One day, their dad died in a car accident. Lenka agonized over painful questions surrounding Pavel’s death, but also how to tell the children. “What would they ask? Aren’t the children too young to attend the funeral? Will they understand? And how do I tell them that we will get through it together? What if they suffer trauma, and how do I know that is the case? How will I raise them on my own? “

The counselling centres such as Vigvam offer a place where no one is alone in finding answers, a safe space for little family members and the grown ones. During the sessions, the therapist talks to children and parents, they play, draw, in short, use techniques that allow people to relax and start talking about their heartbreak. The death of a loved one brings enormous pain, loss of security and insecurity. Therapy allows them to process pain at their own pace and age-appropriately while strengthening family ties that can be broken due to the suffering.

Through supporting therapists and other experts, we help to give children’s stories a happier ending!
young people to find their place in the world

… because everyone deserves support to realize their potential.

Young people in care do not suffer material hardship, but they lack the love and role models of their family and also an opportunity to gain practical experience. We help them to find their feet and successfully start their productive life.

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“When I was little, they told me that if I misbehaved I would go to an orphanage. A few years later, paradoxically, I chose this path myself,” recalls Naďa, who was taken from the family with her sister. “It was a difficult decision, but the situation was unbearable for a long time, our mom drank. I found out that the children’s facility is not a rehab. However, the truth is that some children perceive it that way. The beginnings were very difficult, but I always perceived institutional care as a place where I could start all anew, I can develop and study at university. As the first person in my family. I wouldn’t dare to dream about it before. “

The Tereza Maxová Foundation supported Naďa during her studies, and after staying in the training apartment, Naďa is ready to pursue a new, independent life. “Currently, I am still in school and intensively dealing with my housing situation. Now is the time to leave the children’s home and enter a new stage of life, standing on my own feet. I have worries, but I believe I can make that step, although it will not be easy. I will be even more proud of myself when I make it,” adds Naďa.

We help more young people line Naďa to take their destiny into their own hands!