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Founded in 2002 by Lola Tillyaeva and her husband, businessman Timur Tillyaev, the You Are Not Alone Foundation continues its great work to help under-privileged children and families in Uzbekistan. Fast approaching its 20th year in operation, the foundation’s goal to build a more tolerant and peaceful Uzbek society by helping its children to grow strong has remained constant.
One of the first initiatives the foundation undertook was the refurbishing of orphanages and mercy homes in Uzbekistan. With growing expertise, Lola’s foundation started constructing new purpose-built facilities from the ground up. But the foundation’s work goes far beyond simply providing physical infrastructure for homes. Recently it organized a football tournament for some of the teenage residents. Held in Bunyodkor Stadium in the capital city of Tashkent, the goal of the tournament was to allow the residents to play with their peers from across the city, while also contributing towards their social and physical development. This initiative was supported by the Ministry of Public Education and winning teams were presented with trophies and certificates of participation.
Another aspect of the foundation’s work is the provision of medical treatment. Uzbekistan is a sprawling country of half a million square kilometres. With the capital located in the far east of the country, providing medical services to the population can prove to be a great challenge. You Are Not Alone is helping by organizing annual medical check-ups for children in orphanages across the country. Carried out with the assistance of the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Public Education, the children undergo extensive medical tests with the aim being to detect conditions and diseases early. If any medical issues are identified, the children undergo appropriate treatment.
Health care has always been a priority of You Are Not Alone. Another aim of the foundation is to improve patient care by identifying and rectifying equipment shortages at hospitals and clinics. After recognizing a shortage at the State Perinatal Centre in Tashkent, Lola Tillyaeva and Timur Tillyaev’s foundation provided it with new x-ray systems, cardiac monitors and ultrasound machines, leading to a dramatic improvement in patient care.
Another long-running program is the foundation’s partnership with the French NGO, La Chaîne de l’Espoir (Chain of Hope).
Working together, the organizations diagnose and treat those suffering from acute heart conditions, bringing in specialists from France to treat the patients. The patients, who are usually from disadvantaged backgrounds, receive the kind of medical attention they otherwise would not have the means to acquire.
One of the most recent visits was made by cardiac surgeon Dr. Olivier Baron. During his week-long stay the doctor provided consultations to 70 children from across the country. Those that required it, were referred for surgery. In cases which require complex medical procedures, You Are Not Alone flies patients overseas to ensure they get the best care available.
The foundation also operates numerous other programs geared towards education. For prior residents of the mercy homes, You Are Not Alone offers ongoing support in the form of free legal assistance, which covers everything from helping recover state ID cards to accessing public housing.
With these programs, the foundation continues to fulfill its goal of helping under-privileged children and giving them the opportunity to thrive.
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