Volunteer Sezin Sezgin wins prize for nobility and valor

Having a big heart is not a burden

Photo: Radio Kardzhali

For a third consecutive year, the National Youth Prize for Nobility and Valor initiative awarded prizes to children and young people under the age of 20. Among the winners of "Nobility and Valor" award at a ceremony in the Vrana Palace near Sofia was 17-year-old Sezin Sezgin, student in "Ruska Peeva" Professional School in the town of Dzhebel.

"In Sofia on June 14th I received the Nobility and Valor Award. But I believe that I have accepted an award for our entire club called ‘Having a big heart is not a burden,’” Sezin says.

She is a volunteer at the Bulgarian Youth Red Cross and initiator of several charity fundraising campaigns. She is also the author of “Adventures in the Forest” fairy tale she presents in kindergartens in the region. With collected funds she helps children at risk providing them with clothes and shoes. She is also the author of a children’s book making them acquainted with providing first aid.

She also organized fundraising campaigns like "Hot Lunch," and "Warm Clothes" and says her class teacher Vanya Encheva is her inspiration and role model.

In 2017 Ms. Encheva and some of the staff of the school founded a club to the Bulgarian Red Cross. After that an idea was born in the club to attract young people and today it includes 39 children.

"Motivation came after the first initiative, when the children saw with their own eyes what gratitude looks like," Vanya Encheva recalls. “Back then we helped an elderly man living alone as we bought things we thought he needed. And do you know what gratitude looks like? It looks like a tear in the corner of a human’s eye. After this many more children started coming to the club.”

For nearly three years, children from the charity club have collected more than 10,000 euros they used to help children in disadvantageous position, elderly people living alone, or other people in need.

"We have called on people to help those in need and we received great support from citizens," Sezin told us. "Everyone brought something - toys, clothes, necessities... All the donated clothes were washed and ironed, packaged with love and given to those in need. However, that was not enough as money was needed and we figured out we could something different.”

First, the teenagers decided to use their knowledge and skills learned at the professional school, where they study restaurant services and production. They prepare dishes and sweets that they sell on certain days and inform the population about their campaigns. Collected money is spent for helping people in need. More from Sezin:

"We also staged a puppet play as we wrote our own scripts for the performance and we donated collected money. In the play we talked about helping people and about tolerance that the Bulgarian Red Cross spreads around the world. Our latest project is linked to first medical aid training for the youngest. We have also decided to publish such a book. I want to thank BRC-Kardzhali and all the people who supported us in the venture."

"Our motivation is Mrs Encheva and the joy on faces of people we have helped," Sezin adds. She already knows what she wants to study after finishing school. Sezin wants to study medicine and continue helping people.

She calls on her peers to join the volunteer groups of the Bulgarian Red Cross "because the future of Bulgaria and the future of the whole world depend on young people. There are many people we could help," Sezgin says.

English: Al. Markov

Photos: private library

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