Havant children’s charity founders relocate to Moldova to help orphans and victims of sex trafficking
CHARITY founders who were feeding hundreds of vulnerable people in Hampshire each week have relocated to one of Europe’s poorest countries.
Reach My Street was founded in 2019 by Havant couple Chris and Zoe Lomas, beginning with the mission to provide food to impoverished families throughout the county.
They fed more than 400 people each week, until the pandemic hit and caused higher community need than before.
After learning about the thousands of children abandoned by their parents each month in Moldova and Romania, the charitable pair decided to give up everything and relocate to Pohrebeni in Moldova.
Chris, who aims to help build more than 50 homes for desperate children, said: ‘At the beginning of the first lockdown, we learned that in one village alone in Romania, 74 mothers checked into a maternity hospital and because of abject poverty left without their babies.
‘In Moldova, Europe's poorest country, the situation is worse, with many abandoned children being trafficked and sold into slavery. We simply couldn’t ignore this reality and decided to give up everything and relocate to rescue thousands of desperate children.’
In February, Zoe and Chris moved from their home in Havant, relocating 1,700 miles to begin their mission in Moldova.
Reach My Street’s work in Moldova is focused on rescuing orphans and victims of sex trafficking, as well as raising awareness of one of the poorest countries in Europe.
Zoe said: ‘Economic migration and the lack of jobs in Moldova drives a culture of abandonment and with no clear strategy in place to reverse this trend, one of the first things we plan to do is equip people with the skills to grow business and enterprise and create jobs, keeping parents and children together.
‘We’ve started already and have seen the immediate benefit and want to expand the strategy across the country. Big problems require big solutions and while we work desperately to rescue orphans and victims of child trafficking, we must stem the flow and address the source of the country’s issues.
‘This will not happen overnight, but that will not stop us from starting now. I am already working with young people across different communities in order to change mindsets and create a culture of optimism and hope.’
Visit reachmystreet.com for more information.