Education et Santé
pour les enfants du monde

Saving 200 orphans at Tambov


Tambov is 500 kilometres south-east of Moscow, a damp area where temperatures can plunge to -30° C. The project for the 2004 concert was to finance the urgent replacement of three boilers, for 200 orphans living in an old building without heating.

Tambov orphanage
Tambov orphanage
Nikolai Pavlovic, the director
Nikolai Pavlovic, the director

These children, suffering from serious lung disease, had neither hot water, nor showers, nor decent lavatories. Every ten days they had to walk to the public baths for a proper wash. In the face of this extreme distress, Don du Choeur undertook to renovate the orphanage over a seven-year period, with a budget of 600,000 CHF.

LocationObjectives | Key stages | Top


The orphanage is in the countryside, an hour away from Tambov, a town of 750,000 people. This is a major wheat producing area of Russia and an important vodka distillery centre.

Russia map carte
Russia, locating Tambov
Tambov map
Tambov and the orphanage

ContextObjectives | Key stages | Top


The needs were all urgent and strict priorities had to be set. Year by year, step by step, the building was gradually put into a decent state. Now, there are six showers for children who previously had to walk to the public baths, each child has a bed with a mattress, the roof doesn’t leak over them as they sleep, the windows in the bedrooms and classrooms keep out the cold.

Dilapidated windows
Dilapidated windows, cold and the smell of damp everywhere
153 energy-efficient windows were installed in three years
153 energy-efficient windows were installed in three years

Context | Location | Key stages | Top

Key stages:

2004: The heating works – at last!
2005: There is hot water – and the showers work!

The old boilers
The old boilers
The new boilers
The new boilers funded by the 2004 concert

2006: A dental clinic opens, 100 new beds are purchased, a new roof is fitted.
2007: 153 energy-efficient windows are installed, keeping out the cold and damp
2008: A new kitchen, new electrical circuit, 200 new radiators
2009: Each dormitory has its own bathroom
2010: Two generators are installed, for emergency power during electricity cuts
2011: A laundry room is installed for the girls and five classes receive IT equipment
2012: Renovation of 58 rooms in the dormitory block.

Today, in 2013, the orphanage enjoys the backing of local businesses and donors. Don du Choeur is ending its financial support for the orphans of Tambov, though our heart will remain there always.

Context | Location | Objectives | Top