My name is Georgia Efremova.
I founded the Gergina Human Development Foundation building on a decade-long career in public policy, strategic investments, and integrated social development, preceded by five years spent in the private sector straddling banking and corporate consulting.
My most compelling motivation is the personal healing journey that began five years ago when I was diagnosed with cancer.
This transformative adventure has taught me much about life, love, and the universe we are part of.
Decoding the personal meaning and rebooting my immune system were, for me, key to restoring my health and dispelling the dim life prognosis.
In the process, I reconnected with and rediscovered Bulgaria, learning much about the medical system here, the multiple healing resources in the land, and the missing links in between.
I increasingly sought and identified the connections between the areas of healthcare and my previous area of policy responsibility: investments for innovation and inclusion.
Health and prosperity are intimately intertwined, at both the individual life and the societal level.
There is an urgent need for public policy frameworks and interventions that concurrently deliver targeted psychosocial support for people in the grips of illness and marginalization, as well as address structural and systemic gaps and inequalities.
We lack the awareness of how their absence affects and dehumanizes us all.
The fragmented nature of the funding and investment ecosystem reflects our broader state of societal fragmentation.
The Gergina Human Development Foundation aims to contribute to addressing these urgent needs. This is why we have embraced all three spheres of policy, practice, and care.
In 2022, I transitioned to dedicate myself fully to the foundation’s mission and work toward system change in oncology care and social cohesion.
I am eager to make use of approaches pioneered in the field of
system entrepreneurship and to test and model new social technologies for change in these areas.
I believe we can all work for the higher good, no matter which path we choose. Change depends not on what it is we do, nor even on how exactly we do it, but on the quality of consciousness we bring to it.
The foundation’s name is a bow to my grandmother Gergina, who knew the healing power of words and stories, and devoted her life to caring for others and making them look and be their best.
She knew the difference between difficult and heavy, easy and light, and lived through often difficult predicaments with lightness.
The old Bulgarian language preserves this wisdom: in the olden days, the word used for difficult, ‘tejka’, also meant ‘pregnant’.
In the words of a great teacher, every difficulty is pregnant with possibility, and every person finding herself in a difficult circumstance is pregnant with an answer.
Today more than ever, the world needs not more prescriptions, but more ‘midwives’ supporting people to bring forth these answers from within.
It is on these great people that the success of this organization will ultimately be built.