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Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva’s foundation opens new orphanage in Uzbek capital

Posted in September 2014

Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva
The Uzbek president’s younger daughter Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva has inaugurated an orphanage, built with the financial backing of her charitable organization, You are not alone. She announced the news on her Facebook page on 5 July, and her official website also carried a report on the opening. “Today saw the opening of newly-built City Mercy Home No 23. Having long experience in the area of reconstructing and renovating orphanages across the country, we came to a conclusion that it was necessary to build a new Mercy Home from scratch instead of reconstructing the existing orphanages in Tashkent. There was a need to completely change the structure of and approach to the construction of mercy homes in order to improve the overall standards of living there, making them close to the home environment, as well as to provide children left without parental care with better opportunities for education. To this end, a team of leading specialists - teachers, psychologists, social workers and medical staff - have been employed to work at the new Mercy Home,” Karimova-Tillyaeva said in a message posted on her Facebook page. Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva heads two chartable organizations which help orphaned children and children with disabilities. According to Lola’s website, renovating orphanages and creating there conditions close to the home environment is one of the priority tasks of her charitable foundation. Over the past two years the charity has renovated and provided with equipment and modern facilities a number of institutions which specialize in helping vulnerable children, namely children left without parental care and children with special needs. Those include the National centre for children’s social adaptation (a charity backed by Karimova-Tillyaeva, which provides disabled children with assistance in the areas of diagnosis, orthopedic and neurological treatment, speech therapy and education), a Tashkent baby home (an orphanage for children under the age of three); orphanages in Chirchik and Samarkand. According to information on Karimova-Tillyaeva’s website, You are not alone charitable foundation was founded by in 2002 to provide comprehensive assistance and support to children left without parental care. The primary goals of the charity are to promote development of orphaned and abandoned children, provide them with better opportunities to get comprehensive education, assistance in healthcare and psychological support. “Through promoting better education at the country's orphanages, the charitable organization strives to prepare children for independent life, ensure that they become self-reliant, confident and emotionally stable people when they come of age,” the website says. In her interview with the BBC, Karimova-Tillyaeva described charity work as “her calling” and said she didn’t like to talk about it. “I have noticed that the more you talk about what you're doing, the less pleasure you get from your business," she said. According to information on Wikipedia and circles close to the Karimov family, Lola’s husband Timur Tillyaev is one of the shareholders in the Abu Sahiy trade and transport company. Reports say that despite living abroad since 2006, Timur Tillyaev managed to maintain some of his business interests in Tashkent. The Abu Sahiy company is also reportedly involved in charity activities, which include providing surgery grants for children with serious medical conditions from low-income families.