The Social Teahouse

and the dōTERRA Healing Hands Foundation™ in Bulgaria


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One demographic that is particularly suffering from this decline in both population and opportunity is the disproportionate number of orphans in Bulgaria. Sadly, the needs in Bulgaria far outweigh the resources that are available in vastly underfunded state-run orphanage institutions. Once these children reach the legal age of 18, they can no longer stay at these institutions and are forced to leave.

“They are basically thrown out into society and they fail,” says Emily Wright, Founding Executive and Vice President of Marketing and Sales at doTERRA. “They end up homeless. They don’t have social development skills, trade skills, or any of the things they need to allow them to succeed.”

To help these youth, the doTERRA Healing Hands Foundation has partnered with a local Bulgarian nonprofit organization known as The Social Teahouse. This organization opens its door to youth between the ages of 14 and 18 to help them prepare to leave state-run institutions through offering a three-year mentorship program that builds professional and personal skills.

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These youth are also given access to internships, networking, and job opportunities that provide them with more access to the labor market. The goal is to prepare them to be able to develop careers, sustainable futures, and social integration when they enter society on their own. By learning the skills and competences needed, The Social Teahouse seeks to create a bridge to success between a child’s time in the orphanages and their life after.

Earlier this year, the doTERRA Healing Hands Foundation contributed a substantial donation to assist The Social Teahouse in completing the refurbishment and outfitting of their new head office, training facility, and operating teahouse. At this teahouse, the orphans are able to learn hands-on food preparation, catering, and business skills. The revenue they earn helps to cover costs for the training and mentoring initiatives of The Social Teahouse curriculum. The interns will also learn skills linked to vegetable gardening, larger-scale farming, and distilling operations, in partnership with Esseterre, doTERRA’s new farming and distilling operation in Bulgaria.

The hope is to ultimately increase public awareness, create positive social engagement, and facilitate the opportunities that are much needed to alleviate the difficult transition that exists for far too many Bulgarian youth.

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