Refleks was created in 1993, where the main goal was sport for disabled people and for that we had become members in Estonian Paraolympics and Estonian Unionof Sports fo the Disabled.
Next few years showed that it’s not only sport what the disabled children and youth are interested in. So the Sportclub grew into a Daycenter which now has two parts. The first one included sport, rehab and healthy lifeway’s and the second part offer’s activities and events which evolve trough non-formal study- cause it’s the best way for our target-group. We have are own familiar environment, our own things, funds and opportunities to do things which evolve us in every way possible.
In a little time, our group has enlarged with people who are volunteers and want to be part in our doings, so now our group includes mothers who come to play with their babies, unemployed, youth and adults who have suffered violence, young mothers and single parents who’s life hasn’t been easy on them and children and youth with special needs – so our club is a place where anyone can find something for them.
Sport hasn’t been abandoned, but has a special part in our activities, cause we’re the only ones in our country who have created traditional events like: Rapla County Summer and Winter Games for disabled children and youth, which has happened 11 times for now. Also, We have organized events for a Day-care center called „Pääsupesa“, which is for children with special needs, for five years now and has a new theme every year (competitions for kiteflying, matchbox cars etc).
We have made a tradition to play Santa Claus in winter to „Pääsupesa“ children, for children and their parents in children’s department in County hospital, which has been a nice suprise for them in last five years.
We have helped big families and county Care- Centers and people with clothes and other needful things, but our latest and biggest mission has been helping our country’s sanctuary’s for animals, making soft and warm sleeping pillows for them and will keep helping them to improve homeless animals conditions. We feel this mission is important to us, cause our target-group needs help and support too, but we have each other and if we don’t help our animals then who else will, they can’t scream for help, we just have to see it ourselfes and then do something about it. Our people are very proud for doing that and for reward there was a tv-show about our big mission and they helped to carry the pillows to the centers all over the country. To be really true helpers, we joined the Estonian Animal-Protection Society.
Our club members started coming together in 1989, when most of them were only children and have grown up. All this time, they have been supported and encouraged by the clubs’s founder and president Anne.
For all this time, she has been doing this as a volunteer, cause there’s not that kind of fund who would pay for her to do what she does.
But besides that, cause she has been doing her work so well, she has been recognised greately for that. In 2005 the Estonian Volunteer Center started giving out Volunteer of the Year Decorations and the patron for this event is our country’s president and Anne was one of the decorations resever.
Next she was given a Worldwide Ambassador for Peace title, for valueing family as a entirety. Then she was given a Estonian Proud reward, which is the most dignified reward in our country and is proadcasted in estonian television, for those who do heroic things in their everyday life.
Last acknowledgement was in 2008, when Home Secretary gave her Citizenship Day Favor Decoration, for her everyday activies and work as a citizen.
We could go on and on like this, but we think that the club’s age speaks for itself, you have to be a really good leader, to go on like this so long and still be left things to make us better and stronger.
Cause the club isn’t government institution but an NGO, then to keep going and doing our things, we need to find the resources ourselfes- is it with projects incomes or charity from our sponsors and supporters. But unfortunately the economic downfall has reached to us too. Support from our sources have been decreased, we have been butting our heads together, how to manage with less help from outside, cause the covernment seems to forget that the things NGO’s but on their sholders and are actually covernments area, are starting to be too heavy and covernment has to start helping, what they should have been doing ages ago.
With managing ourselfes, which we have been doing for couple of years now, we have started making cards for christmas and other special events, which we have sold to our sponsors and which is working for them and for us very well. Unfortunately paber-cards are starting to die out, cause In comes the internet-cards, which are easier to work with.
Also we have made ceramic candle-sets, painted cups and our latest and biggest help for ouselfes is sewing, cross stitching and knitting. We do coach pillows, fabric sitting chairs for children, day plankets for beds, little pillows with letter on them to learn (letters are stitched on), hand-bags, photo frames, balls, stress-balls etc. The material comes from furniture makers, their fabric leftovers come to us, so we do re-use with everything we have. And with that we have given chance to do something for children and youth with special needs(which is one of our goals). Also, our club president is a qualified family support-person, so our Daycenter is the right place for every family activity, where every family member is equal and important are love, caring, listening and support. We are a one big family and by helping and supporting us, you get a huge group of loving and warm friends, who give from the heart and hope to get love and respect for return ( what you see rare in these day’s or which are shamed to offer).
Thank you for reading about us – better yet – if we come friends!