NGO Vesta is an organization, accredited with a license by the Ministry of Justice according to the Hague Convention on Protection of Childern and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoptions for USA, UK, Spain, Italy, France, Germany, Sweden, Greece and Canada, Luxemburg, Ireland, Belgium, Malta and Switzerland.
For over 20 years now we have been helping abandoned children to find permanent homes and loving families, we have been advocating for the rights of the children placed in institutions and their right to have a family and we have been supporting many humanitarian projects.
Since the beginning of our activity until now we helped many children to find their family and to grow feeling loved and happy, and the smiles we see on their faces are the biggest reward we can ever hope for.
We know well the adoption procedure, the needs of the children and the hardships they go through, the emotions the adoptive parents experience and we are ready to provide all the support needed to make the adoption process as easy as possible for everyone.
We are dedicated to our mission to help abandoned children and we deeply believe that every child needs the love and support that only the permanent family can give. Special need children and older children without parents take a special place in our hearts and for them we put special efforts, believing that somewhere their family is waiting for them.
Chairperson and founder
Milena has Master’s Degree in Law and over 15 years of experience as a family law attorney.
Milena is the legal representative of the adoptive families in Court and active advocate for the children rights. Milena has been actively working during the years for the improvement of the childcare in Bulgaria, for the amendment of the Family Code and the secondary legislation and for the introduction of simplified procedure for adoption of special need children.
Petko is parts of the Vesta's team since the very beginning and has a vast experience in intercountry adoptions. Petko speaks English and Italian and takes active part in the official, international meetings of Vesta with adoption agencies, representatives of Central Authorities and interested non-governmental organizations. Petko took part in the initiation and the development of the international programs of Vesta. He is also responsible for monitoring the implementation of the humanitarian projects.
Italy Program Manager
Delyana joined Vesta in 2006. Delyana is a teacher and she started working with children when she was at the University. Delyana puts extraordinary efforts on the waiting child program. She visits all special needs children for whom Vesta tried to find families and prepares additional and detailed reports about their development. Delyana speaks English and Italian.
USA, Canada and Italy Program Manager
Plamena has Bachelor’s Degree in Bulgarian Language and Literature and a teacher qualification. She finished her Master’s degree in visual arts in Finland. She speaks English, Italian and French. Plamena is the Program Manager for Sweden and France and works actively on the humanitarian projects of Vesta.
France and Germany Program Manager
Anna speaks English, French and German languages. She has long expirience with our team since 2015. She is active traveler and she accompanies our families in Bulgaria and during their meetings with the children.
Spain and Ireland Program Coordinator
Christina graduated from Spanish Philology. He speaks English and Spanish. She works with Vesta from the end of 2015. taking an active part in the overall activity of the association on the territory of Bulgaria. From the beginning she has also participated in international meetings of the association.
ETHICAL PRINCIPLES AND RULES OF CONDUCT OF
The ethical principles are acknowledged by all members, professionals, voluntary collaborators, and employees of NGO Vesta (The Organization) and guarantee the observance of ethical standards in their work, in connection to their activity and mission in the area of intercountry adoption.
To determine the ethical order by which employees organize their work at the Organization in all aspects of their activity.
The Organization requires that all individuals, directly involved in the adoption correspondence and mediation in intercountry adoption, observe the ethical standards which are developed on the basis of the principles of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Convention of 1993 on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption, the Bulgarian legislation, the common principles and best practices summarized in Manual № 1 and № 2 applied by the Hague Convention.
BEST INTERESTS OF THE CHILD
In all their actions, the employees of the Association should be governed solely by the best interests of the children.
Childhood is an extremely important period in the life of every human being.
The family is the most natural environment for a child's development.
Every child has the right to protection against methods of upbringing that infringe on her/his dignity; physical; mental or other forms of abuse or influence.
Every child has the right to protection promoting her/his normal physical, mental, moral and social development.
Every child and every family deserve to receive support so as to develop their full potential.
The best interest of the child shall be protected at all times.
Every child at risk needs special protection so as to be removed.
Adoption is completed in the best interests of the child.
Every child available for adoption has the right to be placed in an adoptive family, regardless of his/her age, race, or special needs.
Intercountry adoption has a subsidiary nature.
All employees of the Organization are required to possess high personal, moral, and social qualities, as well as to observe an honest and faultless conduct.
The integrity and honesty of the professionals working at the Organization are indispensable qualities, along with their professional qualification.
CONFIDENTIALITY AND PROFESSIONAL SECRECY
The employees of the Organization are obliged to ensure confidentiality in regards to the information they have received from their assignments.
Concurrently, confidentiality is to be strictly observed by all members, voluntary collaborators, professionals, and employees of the Organization, who are obliged to ensure that no data collected during their assignments is disclosed.
All employees of the Organization, who have access to personal information, are strictly obliged to ensure confidentiality and the protection of professional secrecy.
All members, voluntary collaborators, professionals, and employees of the Organization sign a confidentiality declaration and protect with professional diligence the information concerning the children, families, and the activity of the Organization.
RULES FOR WORKING WITH CHILDREN AND ADOPTIVE FAMILIES
The employees of the Organization are obliged to exercise their rights and duties conscientiously, and to treat the adoptive families and children with loyalty and respect.
The employees of the Organization are obliged to adequately provide the professional services stipulated in the contract and clarify to the adoptive families and children the consequences of their decision.
In terms of fulfilling its activity, the Organization ensures that all necessary deadlines and stages of the adoption process are observed and undertakes necessary steps with due care.
In terms of employee selection, the Organization ensures the presence of moral qualities, professional competence, experience and responsibility, while checking for the existence of any information for unethical conduct in connection to childcare and adoption.
Members, professionals, voluntary collaborators, and employees of the Organization are not allowed to work for specialized institutions or social services of residential type for children and cannot be employees of any territorial directorate of the Agency of Social Assistance.
In order to carry out mediation in intercountry adoption, the representatives and employees of the Organization shall have professional or any other appropriate education and/or training, shall exercise their rights and duties conscientiously, shall treat the clients and representatives of foreign partner organizations with loyalty and respect, and shall be guided by ethical standards in the best interests of the children.
To fulfil its activity, the Organization provides experts/lawyers, a pediatric doctor, and psychologists with an appropriate specialization and experience in the sphere of intercountry adoption.
The Organization complies with the rules which prevent the exploitation, sale or trafficking in children.
The employees of the Organization shall not and do not have the right to request and receive remuneration, which is not in proportion to the services rendered and/or the usual remuneration for such services. The said employees shall receive only reasonable remuneration for the services they provide.
The employees of the Organization are forbidden to accept any direct and/or indirect provision of money, material benefits, or any other kind of remuneration, whose goal is to stimulate the adoption procedure.
The specialists involved in the adoption procedures of the Organization are not allowed to request or receive incentive fees or percentage fees based on the number of adopted children. The fees distributed by the Organization shall only be in the form of salaries, hourly fees for services rendered or for an amount of work performed for the Organization.
The mediation contracts, the amount of the state taxes and the expenses for the procedure of the Organization offer full transparency in intercountry adoption process.
The Organization shall guide, advise and support the adoptive families consciously and diligently through all stages of the adoption procedures.
RELATIONS WITH PUBLIC INSTITUTIONS AND BULGARIAN AND FOREIGN ORGANIZATIONS
Throughout its activity, the Organization shall observe the law and international regulations, complying with Bulgarian and foreign authorities and institutions; it shall maintain contact with other accredited organizations in the spirit of mutual respect and cooperation.
In its activity, the Organization supports and cooperates with the state authorities for child care – both local and foreign.
The Organization carries out its activity by actively cooperating with governmental and non-governmental organizations, and individuals on issues concerning the welfare of children, more specifically in the sphere of intercountry adoption.
The Organization cooperates with all institutions concerning the welfare of children and child adoption, particularly in relation to children with special needs, striving to increase their opportunities to be placed with appropriate adoptive families.
The Organization develops and maintains an active programme for the adoption of children with special needs, striving to increase their opportunities to be placed within an appropriate adoptive family environment.
The Organization cooperates with other accredited organizations for mediation in intercountry adoption in terms of collaboration and research, consulting groups, projects and charity work, and social services.
The Organization carries out its activity in a manner which avoids unfair competition.
The Organization informs the respective authorities of the Republic of Bulgaria and the accepting countries about the principles and practices it intends to follow, and offers consulting and mediation services to the potential adoptive families regarding issues and opportunities connected to adoption, disseminating information on the programmes and the activities of the Organization.
The Organization shall develop partnerships with other Bulgarian or foreign organizations and shall maintain loyal and cooperative relations, always guided by the best interest of the child.
The Organization may cooperate with other organizations only after it is affirmed and confirmation is received that these organizations shall always work towards securing the best interest of the child, in accordance with the Hague Convention and the national and international legislation in the sphere of child protection and intercountry adoption.
Contacts with organizations that the Organization cooperates with or seeks future cooperation with in the accepting country, must be established with regard to the partners’ accreditation to mediate in the sphere of intercountry adoption, in accordance with the legislation of that country.
The Organization ensures that the prospective adoptive families are given adequate preparation for the adoption. That preparation must be organized either by a foreign accredited organization, or by other authorities and organizations, or by both.
The Organization enters into mediation contracts with prospective adoptive families only after it assures that they are approved and recommended as eligible to adopt a child from Bulgaria by a home study.
The Organization maintains contact with its foreign partners about all the necessary documentation in Bulgaria. In the event of any discrepancy with the Bulgarian requirements, the Organization duly informs its partner organization and cooperates for the elimination of the discrepancy.
The Organization informs the prospective adoptive families through its foreign partners about the exact amount of statutory fees, the amount of the administrative expenses and the mediation expenses, which are paid only via bank transfer.