Podcast in English
Text size
Bulgarian National Radio © 2023 All Rights Reserved

Born under a lucky star - Radina Velcheva and her foundation "I Want a Baby"

Special charity concert in Svilengrad on the Day of Christian Family has contributed to the birth of dozens of Bulgarian children

Photo: iskambebe.bg

On the Day of the Christian Family, we talk about family values and the family, as the lifeboat on which a person survives in the maelstrom of world events. And the day becomes even more festive when we meet people like Radina Velcheva, whose work has helped hundreds of people receive the greatest gift in life - the birth of a child in the family.

Radina started her professional career as a journalist and radio host in the BNR in the mid-1990s. The power of reaching thousands of people with her message through the airwaves of public media convinced her that speaking out is worthwhile as long as you have a meaningful cause that people can recognize as their own. Step by step the idea of creating a foundation based on the principle "by the people, for the people" emerged. Coincidentally or not, in the spring of 2007, on Annunciation - March 25, the legal decision to register a foundation with the name "Iskam bebe" (I Want a Baby) came true. At that moment Radina Velcheva did not even imagine the huge positive energy that her cause would bring to society.

"Back then it was known that nearly 170,000 couples in Bulgaria struggle with infertility and the true number was perhaps even larger," Radina Velcheva recalls. Five years after establishing the foundation, "Iskam bebe" already had one of the most powerful volunteer teams of motivated, energetic people who strongly believe in the cause. Success was not late. More than 2,500 babies were born in a period of 3 years and the good news about more and more Bulgarians being born thanks to the help of the foundation became an invariable part of Radina’s daily life and all the volunteers. It is the same today, as "I Want a Baby" has been among the most recognizable and respected foundations in Bulgaria for 16 years.

Radina Velcheva

"I have been asked many times how a non-governmental organization manages to maintain such a large capacity for many years, as we do not even have our own office, technical equipment or salaries. We do everything in our free time and during the rest of the time all of us work to be independent and useful to the cause," Radina Velcheva says in an interview with Radio Bulgaria.

"Thousands of children were born thanks to ‘I Want a Baby’. Over the years, our income has come from both large corporate donors and ordinary people who donate small sums to the foundation with each salary, which means thousands of levs over the years. In most cases, these are people who did not have the means to proceed with an infertility treatment procedure and were waiting for help from somewhere. But when good things happened to them, they started making their small monthly donations to the foundation so that they could make it possible for the good news to reach others.”

Today, patients with reproductive problems talk confidently and freely about their difficult path. The media, state institutions, as well as large corporate donors support them. "However, 16 years ago, the situation was different, and the first to lend a helping hand to the foundation were the musicians of the men's brass band ‘Kostadin Manov’ at the community center Prosveta in Svilengrad", Radina Velcheva recalls.

"For the Day of the Christian Family - November 21 they offered us to do a charity concert with their wonderful brass band, formed by self-made musicians. Since then, it has become one of the best holidays for the foundation, which we still celebrate together. The hall is always full, and their performance literally brings the audience to its feet. The meetings there are very emotional and thanks to the brass band and community center workers in Svilengrad we also collect money for the work of the foundation."

Photos: iskambebe.bg, Facebook /@IskamBebe, personal photos, library

Listen to the daily news from Bulgaria presented in "Bulgaria Today" podcast, available in Spotify.

More from category

A dragon wedding and sparkling wine tasting on Trifon Zarezan festival in the village of Delchevo

After a two-year break, the traditional Trifon Zarezan wine festival is organized again in the village of Delchevo.   On Saturday 4 February, dozens of wine and brandy producers are welcome to the village at the foot of Pirin Mountain , to present..

published on 2/4/23 7:25 AM

Hristo becomes Christian and Dobrina - Dolores - 40% of Bulgarian children have non-Bulgarian names

Chosing the name of a newborn is important not only to the little person and her/his parents, but also to society, as naming traditions are part of the national culture. That is why in most European countries naming is regulated by law. In..

published on 2/3/23 4:02 PM

“A little piece of Ukraine” in the capital city of Bulgaria

As Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine on 24 February last year, millions of Ukrainians sought refuge in different countries of the EU and around the world. A number of campaigns in their support were launched in this country, some still continue...

updated on 2/2/23 7:26 PM