Thursday, April 12, 2012

Going home


Iulian Cangea from Ungheni raion, is only 14, but behaves like a mature man. The teenager is good at all kinds of housework, and is the right hand of his father. The household is big and needs much of work and skilfulness, and the boy is very glad that he came home in the time when there is a place for him in the family and when he can be really helpful. Those several years he spent in the auxiliary school of Sculeni, Iulian was rather a guest in the house of his parents. When he would come for over the weekend, he would learn many important things and communicate with his family.


Tudor Cangea, Iulian’s father, is raising alone his three children, the youngest of whom is 12 and the eldest is 16. Several goats, the cow, and the family’s apiary are ensuring a varied every-day menu for the children. Tudor considers himself a lucky man — apart from the income his household is bringing, he has a state-paid position, which is rare in the rural area.

Iulian, who is in the 8th form now, is very happy that he was transferred to the school in his village. The boy is aware that if he stayed one more year in Sculeni residence, he wouldn’t receive school graduation certificate. Although he doesn’t strive to pursue sophisticated education after leaving the school in his village, Iulian says that he would feel humiliated for the rest of his life, if he finished "a school for the fools", as he calls the residential institution.

Iulian attends the village school with great pleasure. Although the grades he is given are far from excellent, Iulian does not get upset, and knows that next time he has to work a bit harder.

"I can’t have school records as good as my classmates, because it’s only this year that I started to study foreign language, chemistry, physics. Even my younger brother know more than I", explains the boy.

Iulian’s father, however, considers that not the marks count most of all, but the fact that the boy is now in the family.

Iulian was sent to Sculeni immediately after finishing the first form. He almost didn’t go to kindergarten, and when he came to school, he didn’t know the letters and the figures. Busy with everyday work, the boys parents believed those who told them that the auxiliary school will help Iulian quickly recover the material that he had missed.

"We thought then that we were doing a favour to our child. If only I could return the time, I wouldn’t let him leave home and I would learn together with him, so that he doesn’t stay behind with school matter", says Tudor Cangea.

Iulian remembers the day he went to Sculeni school. "The headmistress came to our home and took me. I cried my soul out of me. It was awful there in the beginning, I didn’t know anybody, they were all strangers to me.

After every visit home, he would leave his brothers and parents with tears in his eyes. He remembers, when he broke his hand, despite of unbearable pain, he was very happy that he would go home for longer time.

The strict regime in the institution made his days look like twins, and the weeks lasted a whole eternity. The same yard, the same faces, and the same activities every day. The luckiest of the pupils would leave sometimes the premises of the institution. However, it was not for an excursion, but to go and work in the gardens of their educators and teachers. For a day’s work, a child was given 20 to 30 lei. The boy regrets to have never had the chance to go and work for somebody.

The boy’s father says he had much thought to bring the boy home, but he would be concerned by the fact that the boy might find difficulties in school reintegration. Now that Iulian has a mentor, and the teachers of the school were trained to facilitate his reintegration, Tudor Cangea is happy to see his child back home.

Lilia Marcuta, community social assistant, is confident of Iulian’s future. "With little effort, the boy will finish 9 forms, after which he will be able to help his father around their big household and study in a vocational school. What is most important, is that this child does not become a burden for the community in the future, which could have happened if he was left to finish the residential school", said the social assistant.