October 9 2008

First Lady of Latvia visits SOS Children's Village in Uzbekistan

09/10/2008 - The First Lady of Latvia, Mrs. Lilita Zatlers made an official visit to the SOS Children's Village in Tashkent.


Photo: Alexander Aksyonov
The First Lady was very impressed with the children's performance - Photo: A. Aksyonov
The high-ranking guest was welcomed in the SOS Children's Village on 6 October by the chairman of the board, Mrs. Tanzila Norbaeva and the director of SOS Children's Villages Uzbekistan, Mrs. Gulnoza Abidova, who accompanied her during the entire visit.

In getting to know the day-to-day life of the village, the First Lady also visited the home of SOS mother Matlyuba's family, who spoke proudly about the achievements and interests of her children. Her elder daughter Elvina showed the guest her works from beads: beautiful bags, jewelery, decorative flowers and small trees.

Afterwards, the children presented a series of performances they had rehearsed, including dances, Pushkin recitals and even a song by famed Latvian composer Raimonds Pauls. This last performance impressed Mrs. Zatlers very much, as it was performed by little kindergarten children. After the concert, the First Lady had her picture taken with the children, gave them kisses and left her comment in a visitor's book, expressing her gratitude for the warm welcome, wonderful concert and wished happiness to all children.

Photo: Alexander Aksyonov
SOS mother Matlyuba took an instant liking to the First Lady - Photo: A. Aksyonov

SOS mother Matlyuba said the First Lady's visit had been very pleasant: "She was very interested in our village, asking about the successes of our children, their interests and inquiring about their future professions. In my opinion, this kind of meeting helps children to broaden their horizons and raise their self-confidence, because at school they were on TV with the Latvian First Lady".

SOS Children's Village Tashkent presented Mrs. Zatlers with a memorial plate with a traditional motif handmade by children. In response, Mrs. Zatlers gave the children books and CDs about Latvia along with a basket of candies - this event will remain in the hearts of SOS children as a very special one.