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Looking back on 2015 there were a number of successful initiatives that we as an Association participated in, but none more so than the massive increase in the awareness of and participation in Marriage Week 2015.
This was the fourth consecutive year that Society and Values Association were actively involved in Marriage week and comparing year on year statistics, 2015 saw more than twice as many married couples opting to deepen and strengthen their marriages by participating in the daily challenges.  A highlight of the campaign was the written feedback received from some of the couples, that shared how Marriage Week had refreshed their relationship and deepened their resolve to devote more time to one another.


 
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The marriage situation in Bulgaria is not going well.  According to Eurostat we are at the last place of conducted marriages in Europe in 2013 per person. 59 percent of the children are born outside of marriage.  According to Gallup’s agency research big part of the young people consider as normal living together without getting marriage.
Don’t you think that we can do something more about the marriage and family?      
                                              
This year we were so amazed to see a huge media interest and a vast social support of the Marriage Week, including Sofia Orthodox Church, the Catholic, Protestant churches and the Jewish community.

We believe it is worthy each one of us to take part and contribute by giving, according to his/her ability, to see more healthy and successful marriages in our country!


 
Picture"This morning" news on BTV, May 15
Sofia, 19.05.2015 MP Stephen Kenov of the "Bulgarian Democratic Centre” political party has said that the draft of a bill to legalise prostitution in Bulgaria has no support and will not be adopted in this Parliament. 

"I want to apologize to all Bulgarian citizens whose moral values ​​I somehow threatened. Nevertheless, at the moment I see no parliamentary support,” he said on one of the Bulgarian national TV channels on Friday.

The reason for the invitation and Kenov's apology in the media was an open letter, sent by 25 organizations, that was sent to the government the day before, asking them to oppose the legalization of prostitution in the country.

Otherwise, the bill was expected to be tabled in the National Assembly within weeks. The purpose was to legalize brothels, getting them to pay an annual licence fee and charging 10% income tax on all brothel employees.

Mihaela Djorgova from Association of Society and Values, coordinator of the initiative, said to the media, that everywhere where prostitution has been legalized there is a significant increase in human trafficking, sexual exploitation and illegal prostitution.

Association Society and Values

 
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On the Eve of the upcoming holidays we, the Society and Value Association (SVA), would like to take this opportunity to share with you, a few of what we deem to be, our most important accomplishments for 2014.  

This year, for the third consecutive year, marked the occasion of “Marriage Week”, which took place from the 7th -14th February 2014. SVA is the initiator and coordinator of this event, which aims to unify the public efforts in encouraging the concept of marriage and the traditional family values. Following on from our two day social media campaign over 300 couples subscribe to receive a week of daily tips, focused on strengthening their relationship. During the campaign a presenter invited us to continue sharing on the Marriage topic for a further three months.  During this extended period we assisted in sourcing and co-ordinating different married couples who shared on live radio about their marriages. To view the radio interviews conducted during this period, please go to www.brak.bg 


 
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On the occasion of the International Day of People with Disability (3 December), more than 100 organisations representing several million citizens in EU Member States are calling upon the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, to withdraw the proposal for a fifth Equal Treatment Directive. Originally intended to remedy specific discrimination against disabled people, it has since become an instrument to advance many other wide-ranging political objectives. 

The signatories of the open letter are worried that the proposed Directive, if adopted, would limit the fundamental civil rights of all European citizens in a grave and harmful way – particularly the freedom to carry out diverse and targeted professional, economic and service activities without being afraid of being accused of discrimination.


 
Another year has passed for our work as an Association. We will celebrate Christmas in only a few days and it is a privilege and joy to share with you some of the achievements during this year.

In 2013, for the second year, we celebrated the Marriage week! This is an international initiative to promote marriage between a man and a woman, which SVA has initiated and coordinated in Bulgaria. This year we were able to give more publicity to the importance of the weekly meetings between spouses, with an active campaign in the social networks and the media. We held a competition dedicated to the Marriage week with prizes, which received inspiring stories of different couples.

We continued our civil actions against the legalization of mandatory kindergarten for 4 year olds. Our actions (open letter, press-conference, protests, participation in public discussions and media) along with others, has helped to postpone the passing of the bill. Fortunately, this bill failed to fully be passed before the cabinet to resigned, despite the strong political pressure!

Association Society and Values (SVA) participated in a meeting of the organizations part of the civil platform of the Federal Rights Agency of EU in Vienna, as a member of the platform. During the discussions SVA actively advocated the best interests of children with focus being on the child’s right to a father and mother.

 
Developments and successes, which have marked our activities as an association in 2012: -

This year, Society and Values Association (SVA) took another huge step forward by starting constructive actions to strengthen the marriage and family, and concurrently continued our work to protect the rights of parents, children as well as the rights and dignity of women. 

Below is a brief overview detailing some of our most important achievements for 2012: -

New Child Law:

At the end of 2011, SVA first issued an official statement alerting the public as to the dangers, which are hidden within the proposed Child Law.  This law proposed breaking fundamental parental rights, which could facilitate the process for children to be taken away from their families far more easily.  As a result of our public statement, a number of parental organizations and movements were formed in Sofia and other cities. 

SVA was a co-organizer as well as a participant in a round table discussion in Parliament, earlier this year and participated in a series of civil actions, public debates, media broadcasts and protests on this topic.

At this round table Parliamentary discussion, Allan Carlson, chairman of the World Congress of Families, sent a letter to the Bulgarian authorities giving his input on the issue.  Later as a consequence of the common civil actions initiated and supported by SVA, the proposed Child Law was frozen and the planned upload to the Council of Ministers site in May, postponed.

 
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On 12 December hundreds of Bulgarian parents gathered in front of the Bulgarian Parliament to protest against the latest education draft of the Law on education. The draft stipulates compulsory preschool education for children aged 4 and sanctions parents who do not enroll their 4-year olds in preschool. The draft heavily sanctions parents who organize their own children's daycare in the form of parents cooperatives, where a number of parents put their children (up to 7-10) in a private home to jointly take care of them.

The cold, minus zero celsius temperatures did not prevent parents from going out to voice their protest, bearing infants and small children in the freezing wind.
After the protest, a Round table was held at the Bulgarian Parliament, in which representatives of the educational ministry, the educational industry and parents' organizations took active part.


 
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Ambassadors from 12 countries are accused of going outside their jurisdiction, and undermining the institutions of marriage and the family, by endorsing a June 2012 gay pride parade in Sofia, Bulgaria.

“We see nothing but purposeful political pressure to blur the conventional boundaries of our society and to erode its attitudes concerning the family institution,” representatives from 20 civic and family organizations told the diplomats in a formal letter of protest, made public July 12.

Ambassadors from the U.S., U.K., Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Finland, France, the Netherlands, Norway, and Serbia were criticized in the complaint for declaring their support for the June 30 Sofia Pride March.