Over 1,500 children live on the streets in Romania according to estimates by UNICEF. These children come from a variety of backgrounds, but a new phenomenon is that some of these Romanian children are born on the streets to parents who themselves grew up on the streets.
These children of street children have never experienced a warm home with running water, regular hot meals or so many other things we take for granted every day. All they know is the daily struggle to survive. Additional pressures in today’s society include the availability of drugs and the very real risk for young girls of being stolen and trafficked. Many are drug addicts, sniffing glue or aerosols to escape the harsh reality of their daily lives. When winter comes, temperatures drop to as low as minus 30c, so many of these children live beneath the streets amongst the hot water pipes that crisscross the cities, emerging only to forage for food.
Project Romanian Rescue started in 1997 in the city of Constanta to help these children. There are two homes – one for girls and one for boys who would otherwise be living on the streets. Each home has a loving staff team who teach family values, and children have the opportunity to go to school and church. The PRR team also make visits to the many people living on the streets, giving out food and being available to talk and pray with them about concerns and problems.