Czech Republic: Romani businesspeople raise funds to support visually impaired children
Robert Tonelli has repeated last year's initiative and organized a Christmas charity event sponsored by several Romani entrepreneurs and tradespeople. This year's proceeds were donated to children at the Visual Impairment Clinic in Dvůr Králové nad Labem.
"I am very glad that my team, which is comprised predominantly of Romani entrepreneurs and small tradespeople, does not just have the aim of supporting Romani children, but knows how to respond to the broadest possible spectrum of social aspects of all kinds to support all children irrespective of skin color," Tonelli said in an interview for news server Romea.cz. The sponsors of the event were: K.M. caterink s.r.o., ROBOSTAV Praha s.r.o., Hotel Central s.r.o., Cukrárna s.r.o., Michal Žolták, Johana Keltová, Michal Pleš, Bc. Zdeněk Guži, Denisa Sehnalová, Mgr. Ema Švadlenková, Vladimíra Demeterová, Denisa Machová, Pavlína Bažová, Martin Kovács, Margita Svobodová and Jaroslav Svoboda.
Q: Why did you choose the clinic for children with visual impairment for your charitable giving this year?
A: I thought for a long time about what kind of institution we would support this year, and through Ms Veronika Žilková, with whom I collaborate, I discovered that clinic for visual impairment and the idea was born to organize a charitable Christmas party for the children at that facility, and at the same time we wanted to support the clinic itself, as it is the only institution of its kind in the Czech Republic. That seemed very interesting to us.
Q: What is the main aim and purpose of this nice gesture?
A: Any health care facility designed for children and the treatment of their medical handicaps deserves support. The visual impairment clinic, which returns the light to children's eyes, deserves our support. I am very glad that my team, which is comprised predominantly of Romani entrepreneurs and small tradespeople does not just have the aim of supporting Romani children, but knows how to respond to the broadest possible spectrum of social aspects of all kinds to support all children irrespective of skin color. For that I am immeasurably, really glad.
Q: What all did the children receive from you?
A: Because they are very young children up to the age of six, the gifts were typical ones, for the little girls we got dolls, crayons, coloring books, stuffed animals, puzzles, and for the boys we also got toy cars, mini-Lego sets and a book. The clinic itself received a cash donation in the amount of CZK 15 000 [EUR 580] to buy equipment or special toys for curing visual impairment, doing eye exercises.
Q: Last year you donated to a children's home, what are you planning for next year?
A: That is a very difficult question, but what is certain is that we will always support children who have a handicap, and it's all the same whether it is a medical one or a social one. We are a team of people who are incapable of thinking just about ourselves. Christmas is a magical holiday, and all of us should provide others aid if possible. We never know when we will need the assistance of others ourselves. We intentionally create this Christmas party every year in such a way so we can better get to know the children for whom the event is designed, so we can spend the pre-Christmas time with them, and so the children can get to know who has organized the party. It's good that Romani people themselves are involved in this process. It's a sign that we know how to join forces to create a charity event that does not smack of our own benefit. Our reward is the children's joy and smiles. I would very much like to thank all the sponsors who contributed to this entire event and supported the charitable party. I appreciate your trust in me personally, and I believe that next year you will show me your good will again and together we will support more handicapped children. Big thanks to all of you.
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