Making children happy, but above all giving them a chance in life. That is the mission of the Kapka naděje (Drop of Hope) foundation. St. Nicholas, a devil and an angel led by Vendula Svobodová, but above all contributing towards research which saves the lives of the very youngest of those among us …
Kapka naděje organises an event for hospitalised children in Motol every year before Christmas. What is it like to make children happy?
We look forward to it every year and this year was another great one. We prepared a “St. Nicholas show” for the children. Libor Bouček played St. Nicholas, Vašek Noid Bárta got dressed up as a devil and Agáta Hanychová and I played the angels. Those children who are not too tired always really look forward to it and we have devils which you really would want to hide from.
Is it easier to find donors before Christmas or is the time of year unimportant?
The market really is overloaded with charity events around Christmas and as far as collecting money for children is concerned, we do that all year round. It is quite sad that lots of companies only remember the children in the run-up to Christmas and don’t give any thought to them throughout the year. On the other hand, it is a good thing that they at least remember them at some point.
If we look back on the past year 2016, where did the money which Kapka naděje collected go?
We started to collaborate with the register of bone marrow donors this year and that is in fact our latest project. And last month, the register even increased the age limit for participation. By complete chance, I met a lady yesterday who said to me: “It is such a good thing that they increased the limit in the register. I am 38 years old and I went in to sign up yesterday.”
And what plans does Kapka naděje have for 2017?
You can’t expect anything new or revolutionary from us. We are organising a concert for next year, because we always get a lot of money from that and it is something which has to be planned a long time in advance as you have to get money together to put it on. We will be continuing to do the things we have started. We even for example have a foreign donor. One of the foreign developers had a child who was ill and signed up for several years of collaboration with Kapka naděje in the field of science and research into neuroblastoma. Not many people know it, but we also support applied research at an independent unit at Motol Hospital and that is the most expensive thing about that hospital. The science and the research. Kapka naděje for example pays for a social worker, a therapist, but also for curative stays for children. These are constantly increasing as there are more and more children there. We are really happy that they can have these stays as with a view to their state of health, they are frequently excluded from their peer group and society as a whole.
How many projects does Kapka naděje in fact support?
We practically have some eight projects which we support. But we above all wanted to offer our donors something new. We have an “e-shop” on our website and there is equipment there which people can contribute towards and also learn more about which specific hospital it is intended for. The moment the required amount of money is collected, the machine is handed over to the hospital. In doing so, we want to show people that they can become direct participants in this process and know exactly where the money is going.
What is the ideal amount for Kapka naděje needed to satisfy the needs of all of the children?
We would have to win the Eurojackpot lottery (laughs). Support for applied research costs millions. We cover all of the cancer departments all over the country. We also collaborate intensively with other departments such as the children’s burns unit at Vinohrady Hospital. When you see a child who has suffered burns and how they will have to grow up with burns into adulthood, it is not only about the aesthetic side of things, health and their state of mind are also involved. We welcome every crown – as we say “every drop!” We collaborate with more than 40 hospitals all over the Czech Republic and that doesn’t come free (laughs)
What would you like to say to any potential donors?
I understand that people are already a little bit immune to these organisations which exist here and we offer them the fact that we have been here for seventeen years and that we collaborate with more than forty hospitals throughout the whole of the Czech Republic - we know what they need. So, we are able to effectively and in a targeted manner direct help to the places where it is needed and where is can be meaningfully used.
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