Geza* was resident on a rehabilitation course for alcoholics when Blythswood shoeboxes were distributed last December. And this experience of unexpected kindness marked a turning point in his attitude towards others.
His time at Bonus Pastor Foundation’s Therapy Centre in the Transylvanian village of Ozd was his third attempt at addressing the problem which threatened to destroy his life. Twice he had attended a short-term programme but had relapsed after going home.
“His alcoholism narrowed down his perspective on life,” says BPF team member Eva Adorjan. “Although he is married and has an eight-year-old son, the joy of giving had disappeared from his life. He no longer understood what it meant to give or receive a present.
“When he received a box full of gifts he was so surprised. It made a big impact in him. It made him think of giving to others and especially of giving himself back to his wife and son. On his next visit home, his wife noticed the difference in his kindness towards her and towards their son.
“Since completing the course at Ozd, he frequently tells us how his life has changed. Now he has a job and his relationship with his family has healed.”