Romania, once the breadbasket of Europe, is replete with poverty and hunger. It has one of the highest poverty rates in the EU, with rural poverty at a stunning 70%. Moreover, there are nearly 100,000 abandoned children in state run orphanages, 10,000 living on the streets, and over 100,000 aborted each year (the highest abortion rate in Europe; second highest per capita worldwide). Child abandonment is considerably high in Romania, especially among the Roma people who account for 80% of all the abandoned children. The Roma people (commonly known as gypsies) abandon their children because their extreme poverty makes it too onerous for them to care for them. furthermore, they start having children at a young age (12-18 yrs.) and usually do not practice any form of birth control.
These abandoned children live in the city sewers and are very often preyed upon by sex-traffickers and individuals who harvest their internal organs for the black market (their internal organs are removed sold on the black market). Those that are not sold as commodities oftentimes become child prostitutes and are almost always sexually and physically abused while on the street.
What’s more, orphans – albeit street kids or institutionalized orphans – are almost always looked down upon. They grow up without role-models, are psychologically traumatized, and are not taught the necessary life-skills to survive in society. Thus, once they become adults they are ill-prepared to find work, a secure living accommodation, and manage their finances.