Question about the event
Ambassador Degnan: It’s really a pleasure to be here for the ribbon cutting of these two small group homes for orphaned children with disabilities. This is a very moving experience to see the home-like environment that has been created for these children, eight-months-old to 11 years-old. These homes are designed for children up to 18 years old, where they can learn the skills they need to be able to reintegrate into their families and into their communities. It is designed to help the most vulnerable sector of society, children with disabilities. I can’t tell you how emotional it is to see the love and care that these caregivers are giving to these children who respond to that kind of warmth and love with their own love in return. I really commend the city of Tbilisi for the support that they provided to this project, and the Ministry of Health for all they have done. We now have three homes here together, a little cluster, a little village to support these children with disabilities. I also want to thank the European Command of the United States Defense Department, the Office of Defense Cooperation who funded this—it’s a $1.2 million project overall—that was built by the Army Corps of Engineers and the construction company LSG. So, it was very much a team effort, and you can already see the difference it’s making in the lives of the children who now have this place to call home.