Famous actor Orlando Bloom visits rehabilitation center in Moscow
MOSCOW, Russia - November 16, 2008
The children in the Krasnoselsky social shelter in the centre of Moscow could not believe their luck when Orlando Bloom, their hero from the movie Pirates of the Caribbean, specially came to visit and spend time with them. “Wow! Will Turner live!” – the children were happy to talk to their hero . “When did you start acting?”, “What kind of music do you prefer?”, “Do you like Russian cuisine?” – Orlando enjoyed the openness and honesty of the children and answered all of their questions.
The children in the shelter have come from vulnerable families no longer able to take care of them, frequently because of enormous economic and social pressures. Many have been neglected and forced to survive on their own, living some or all of the time on the street, where they are exposed to all sorts of risks both physical and psychological. Orlando Bloom went to see the UNICEF-supported shelter, on his first visit to Russia as he wanted to understand for himself the work being done for those children who really need help. Orlando was impressed with the work the shelter is doing to reintegrate the children back into their original families.
UNICEF’s Representative in Russia, Bertrand Bainvel, explains that “the work this shelter is doing is important in offering immediate care to children found in extremely hazardous and difficult situations, and in helping them to recover and reintegrate into society. UNICEF is pleased to see that in Russia, much more priority is now being placed on minimizing these situations in the first place either by supporting vulnerable families or developing alternative family based care when it is not in the best interest of the child to grow up in its biological family.”
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) supports a number of institutions offering rehabilitation and support to such children in Moscow and St Petersburg, but also works at regional and national levels to promote social services that provide intervention and support starting from early interventions up to reintegration. Soon Orlando Bloom will become UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. He has already started to attract attention to children’s problems around the world, for example to the issue of providing clean drinking water in Nepal and to the situation of children in Sarajevo.