The last day of the year is one for
reviewing what we have managed to do and setting new goals for the new year. If
we would review 2017 as accountants do, this would definitely be the most
intense year since “Tuvu” was established. At some points it seemed like we are
on a roller coaster that takes us along without the option to hop out or brake.
It has made us to think about our priorities, review them and try to
differentiate between the important and the insignificant things. And we also
learned to use the word “no” more often. Otherwise,
it can be too late. Because sometimes less is more. Less, but more special
relationships... Less, but more special things... Less, but more unforgettable
travels... Less... But this awareness confuses us, because “Tuvu” is everything
but less - we now have twice the amount of employees we had last year. The
amount of received cargoes from Germany has grown three times, there are now 2
charity shops, thus twice the work to do. Also the work with warehouse premises
and social help centre will start very soon, in 2018, so the amount of work
contributed here has been great. The amount of projects has also increased - in
summer 2017 we had 2 construction projects for renewing homes for families in
need. There’s also doing the daily work in warehouses, distributing items in
the centre and office... A lot of the jobs couldn’t be shown in the social
media, although we understand how important that is. But we still need some
helping hands, so our resolution for new year is to find balance in what we do
and to gratefully receive help from others, which wasn’t as easy until now,
since we always had that little shy Latvian voice in the back of our heads to
not burden someone and just say “OhWe’llFigureSomethingOut”.
It would be impossible to mention each and every one, because there’s so many of you, who were trustingly with us during 2017... We just want to say that without you - the volunteers, employees, friends, supporters, donors and contributors - we wouldn’t exist, or we would go back to a time 15 years ago, when we distributed clothes and food from a garage of a private house, which, now looking back, is a good start for establishing organization “Tuvu” the way it is today.
This year we also managed to surprise
most of the families in our care that we visited shortly before Christmas. This
is a tradition that gives the holiday spirit not only to the families, bus us
as well, because we see the joy of those receiving gifts and those that made
the gifts - donors, supporters, friends...
We wish to say thank you to everyone who prepared this surprise and were involved in this Christmas miracle.
Thank you to GAiN Germany for the delicious goods, food and gifts, thank you Signija Fiļimonova for the beautiful toys and games, thank you Ziedot.lv for games, thank you also to Līga Bandeniece-Silgaile and Pastry Shop Tarte for the cakes and other sweets, thank you Ilona Osīte for food and fruits, thank you Palidzesim.lv for goodies and gifts, thank you Miss Vaira for the war socks and mittens! Also thank you to the volunteers that helped to prepare and give everything to families!
Every week the families in need and lonely people continue to receive help in our warehouse that is currently being made into a multi-functional centre of social help. We also surprise the families with some delicious goods prepared by our friends and supporters.
For us - the managers - these 5 days are the ones that create the best memories and events, because the positive aftertaste is the one that makes us organize the camps year after year. So we are grateful that e can organize them with the help of our supporters.
During these 5 days we experienced one great gift - beautiful and sunny weather! Taking into account what happened during this week in Latvia weather-wise, this can only be considered a miracle! The beautiful weather allowed to have the camp program in full volume - we swam in the nice sea by Užava where we were the only people there. We went on a hike where we also had interesting challenges and difficult tasks to complete on the way. We played different games, challenged and tested ourselves and our abilities in unusual situations. We learned a little bit about the world of music through piano and guitar, we targeted and got our target, got an insight about the world of business, did some hair fashion, learned to cook delicious, healthy snacks, did sports a lot, played water games and were soaking wet, we received guests and asked them many questions every evening, listened to inspiring stories and gained one of the true values - new friends. The goal of camp “Tuvu” was not only to create resting and entertainment platform for 5 days, but also teach the teenagers about values and conclusions that will be useful for the rest of their lives.
Which is the phenomenon that make these camps of those of many other organizers so unique? We didn’t do anything that special, each person that was in it all completely and with their heart can assure that we just fulfilled what the camp manager and entrepreneur Aldis Cimermanis said - “just love those kids”! Nothing more is required from us - neither in camp, nor when it has long ended.
From the bottom of our heart we are thankful to all the managers of camp, your pay will be a great one, you already know that...
Unbelievable... The construction project process itself still seems unbelievable and the result is even more so! A wonderful house was build on an empty lot in just two days. A big thank you to the best team of UPPE for their cooperation and the work done! You were great by not only doing what you know and being professionals of highest rank, but also in your attitude and compassion. We are a rich country if we have companies like these! Among these companies are also those that trusted this project and supported us. It wouldn’t be possible without you!
A big THANK YOU
SIA “TENAX” in Dobele and personally to Uldis Liepa Liepiņš,
Krāsu serviss SIA and
personally to Baiba Upīte,
SIA JUMP and
personally to Mārtiņš Prīsis,
Soudal Latvija and
personally to Jolanta,
Vika Wood and
personally to Andis Smelte,
Cafeteria in Jelgava - Lauķene,
School of Lielvircava and personally to school manager Lauris,
To Jānis Veldre and Marita Veldre,
SIA “Alejas projekti” and
personally to Andris Drēska,
To Inese Drēska and her friends,
To Līga Pētersone.
This is the annual charity construction project of society “Tuvu”, its cooperation partners and supporters, when we renew a home of one family.
In December 2017 the story about his house was
included among the highest rated stories in site Delfi.lv - read about it here.
Thanks to Pastry Shop Tarte, for several of our families Sundays can now become surprise cake Sundays! The joy in their eyes.. it’s worth a lot! Thank you ladies for the great joy you give!
The big annual project with #DART (Disaster Assistance and Response Team) and our friends and cooperation partners from GAiN Germany this year happened in Latvia. Difficult tasks, challenging situations and creative solutions - it was really intense! A big thank you for bringing the night challenge to life to Ltd. Rīgas apsardzes sabiedrība - team of Ozolnieki, to Jānis Vītols, Aldis Cimermanis and Viktors Rautmanis. The team leaders think that the members of this event won’t forget it so soon and we hope that this experience will help them when the danger comes to real life. Difficult while learning - easier in the battle later on! Thank you, men!
2016 has ended and it’s the time when we want to be grateful for everything that has made us stronger, smarter, more understanding, given us experience and more, and more… we’ve become richer by another year. When looking back at this year and what it’s been like, we can only sigh in thankfulness, because we were truly blessed! This year has brought great changes in our team. For many years there were only the two of us, but this year several wonderful people have joined us, and their hearts beat in the same rhythm as Tuvu’s. These people have been trustworthy, persistent and strong in what they do. We’re very grateful that you are with us!
GAiN Germany, Klaus, Claudia, all of the great, dear "GAiN" team – where would we be without you! Without you we could only do as much as possible with our own resources, but with you we can be in whole Latvia, because now every region has a “Tuvu” partner who provides help to those who need it the most. And the construction projects! After those we feel like we’re floating above the ground for a couple of weeks. Starting from 2018 we’ll be able to manage 2 projects every year and that’s wonderful! We’ll do our best to keep up with your speed of managing projects in Latvia. We’re glad that you love Latvia with all your heart, it’s visible every time you visit us!
This year has also brought changes in our shop location. At the beginning these changes seemed like the biggest mountain to climb, but now we enjoy it as a gift. Although the work has now doubled, so has the load of positive emotions and space for the shop, so the initial struggles have been long forgotten.
This year had another significant characteristic and we can only express it through Bible verse - Matthew 6:3 - "But when you help a needy person, do it in such a way that even your closest friend will not know about it" We can’t otherwise explain the amount of people who silently brought the necessary things for the elderly and those in trouble. How could we otherwise explain the man who volunteers to clean our shop windows and now has become an important part of our team; how can we explain the man from America who wanted to secretly give a present to a mother, who has lost her husband in a motorcycle accident and now raises her children alone; the man who responded to our invite to donate a washing machine for a family with 5 children – he not only delivered it to them himself, but brought a new, unused washing machine still in packaging and completely surprised the family, because the mom of the family still remembers it as a miracle. Another woman secretly with our help gave money to a single mom so she could buy firewood, because she knew the tough situation the family was in and wanted us to keep it a secret, so the family’s mom would feel like she owes something to her supporter. Another heartwarming example is a company whose employees wanted to put in windows for a poor family’s house, and when their employer paid them for it, they decided to donate this money to the family so they could renovate their well. And so on, and so on… So many wonderful and touching stories that we see every day and want to loudly tell, but it’s impossible to tell them all. And once again we conclude – it’s all worth it! It’s worth to get up every morning in gratefulness and do what we do, although sometimes hands heavy from tiredness, but it only means that we can’t see the big picture, because it shows that every little thing is important and it can play a big role in even bigger picture.
Thank you for 2016, we are grateful for your trust and being with us! May the next year be filled with joy of giving and receiving!
Se photos in gallery
Society “Tuvu” camp took place from June 26 to 30 and 46 teenagers participated, aged 11-17. The camp was held in camp center “Ganības” in Užava, near the sea. Since the weather was very nice, a lot of the activities included games in water, swimming in sea and river, riding boats and many other activities. Through the entire camp the participants earned the local currency - Užiņi, so they could purchase valuable items from our sponsor Adidas. They earned money in sports games and fun activities, and they even asked if they can help the cooks in kitchen, with some cleaning jobs and preparing the firewood for evening bonfire - the willingness to achieve the goal was amazing! They also had the opportunity to participate in different workshops and Olympic tournament, teens spent a whole day hiking in the woods and by the sea, fulfilling challenges and tasks prepared by JSC “UPPE”. Baltic champion in moto trial Andris Grīnfelds had prepared a special surprise that made everyone’s heart beat faster by showing how complex tricks can be done with a motorbike.
The goal of camp “Tuvu” was not only to create resting and entertainment platform for 5 days, but also teach the teenagers about values and conclusions that will be useful for the rest of their lives.
A big thank you to all teenagers for being there and participating! We hope to see you soon in other events. A big thank you to our wonderful team of volunteers without whom this camp wouldn’t be possible! Also thank you to camp supporters: Ozolnieki region local municipality, company Uppe, Gain Germany, Palīdzēsim.lv, Party Shop, Meat processing company Nākotne, Latvian Christian Student Association, Latvian Evangelical Lutheran Church of Minneapolis, and Camp Center Ganības. Also thank you to customers of charity shop “Tuvu” for being with us, because it gives us the opportunity to organize such camps and other important charity projects. After reading the participant’s thoughts and evaluation of our camp there is no doubt whether to organize it next year! See you in camp “Tuvu 2017”!
This holiday made us think together about gifts, Christmas events, and cooking issues. This time also allowed us to slowly become calm, see what we did this year and understand how valuable and unique it has been. For us this year was special with the opening of our Charity Shop, which gave us completely different speed in our work. Thank God people love our shop and we hope that we can bring you all joy in 2016 as well, so that our charity work would only grow and bring changes in people’s lives. In previous year we have met many wonderful people - new cooperation partners and supporters, as well as volunteers and friends. We have also received our local municipality and state recognition, so now we just have to continue in the same level, but there’s no doubt - with such great people around and the help of God everything is possible! Thank you for your trust, support and friendship! See you soon, and let’s have hope for new wondrous events in 2016!
We would like to look back at the last days of the previous year for a moment, when we prepared a surprise for the celebration tables of poor families in Jelgava region. We visited them, enjoyed this time and were glad that we have such wonderful job! :)
Thank you to the active volunteers for shopping, weighing, and packing, thank you to Palidzesim.lv for the gifts that we could add to food and treats!
The cargo with presents has already traveled its way from Jelgava to Riga and we just can’t wait for the little sweethearts to receive them in far away countries! Star in the East
This year people from Jelgava and its region will bring joy to 64 children! That’s wonderful!
The room of parents and their 6th-grader before...
The room of parents and their 6th-grader (behind the closet is a bed and table for him too)...
The room of 3 children with disabilities before...
The kitchen before...