Here's the official charity Trustees' report for the year 2005 to 2006

The trustees report is written for our auditors and goes into the accounts. This gave the most up to date information on our activities at that time.

 

THE RELIEF FUND FOR ROMANIA LTD
REPORT FOR THE YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH 2006


The members of the trustees, who are the trustee directors of the Relief Fund for Romania Limited present their report and the audited financial statements for the year ended 31st March 2006.

 

WHO ARE WE?

We are a British charity, based in the UK, that raises funds and spends them in Romania.
We have 2 full time charity staff and about 30 charity shop staff. At any one time, we are paying for the salaries of 30 - 40 charity workers in Romania.

All our trustees are Romanian.

We were formed by prominent Romanian exiles in 1989 after the collapse of the dictatorship and were instrumental in publicising the appalling plight of orphans and others in need.

We played a major part in coordinating the enormous aid response from all over the UK and transported huge quantities of emergency supplies. We helped to network many independent aid efforts. In recent years we have set up and run various long-term sustainable projects.


WHAT WE DO

We support various charity projects helping the children, the sick, the elderly and other groups in need in Romania. We do this by providing financial and material aid, promoting awareness and funding the training of suitable Romanian professionals throughout Romania.

We mainly fund those Romanian charities with whom we work closely on long-term community based projects. Occasionally we fund charity projects run by independent Romanian groups ie with whom we aren’t so closely involved. In these instances we ensure tight financial controls are in place and monitor the work with regular reports and visits.

We also deliver services directly with our own projects. For example our support of The Romanian National TB Programme.

We run national campaigns and training programmes particularly focusing on human rights in institutions and community care of the elderly sick and dying.

We maintain a role of close involvement, advocacy, support and evaluation of all operations we fund. All organisations submit quarterly financial and project reports and we visit the projects in Romania annually.


REVIEW OF ACTIVITIES APRIL 2005 – MARCH 2006

During 2005/2006, we continued to develop our work with the most disadvantaged in Romania.

We continued to focus on enabling the Romanian NGO sector to develop effective programmes of social support that can be contracted by the state. In a country where few services are established and in a climate of institution closure, we see this as vitally important for Romania’s future.

On a national level, we funded various projects directly.

Many regional community projects were funded through our main partner organisation Fundatia de Sprijin Comunitar (Community Support Foundation), Bacau: (FSC)

- Home Care of the Elderly sick and infirm

- Mobile Health Care to Disadvantaged Rural Areas

- Street Children’s Rescue, Refuge and Rehabilitation

- IMPART: Arts Therapy for the Disabled for children and adults in institutions and the
community

- Emergency grants and social support for the very poor

- Citizen’s Advice Bureau: part of a national network

- Mobile Pharmacy to isolated rural areas

- Arts and community reintegration therapist for adult long-stay psychiatric hospital


SPECIFIC OUTCOMES 2005– 2006

During 2005 Our main partner organisation, FSC, was the first NGO in Bacau County to obtain the accreditation of the social services from the Ministry of Work and Social Protection.

In May 2005, the Government of Romania declared FSC to be "an Organisation Of Public Utility ".

After nine years of FSC’s formal existence, this is an important national recognition of a dedicated, hard working and professional organisation which covers many needs in the community.

This certification was awarded after careful examination by 3 National Ministries and various local authorities.

The "mobile pharmacy in rural areas" project was given a special award under the health category at the Civil Society Gala (Bucharest, February 2005) and the special media award for "human solidarity" at the same event

The Head of the EU Delegation in Romania, Mr Jonathan Scheele, paid a second special visit to FSC in 2005 and attended their annual Community Awards Gala

The President of the County Council affirmed formally - during a special extended meeting with the County Counsellors - that “we are proud to be affiliated with FSC and we are very happy to be able to contribute to the costs of their projects”.


Stefan Ciobanu RIP

Sadly the organisation suffered a terrible loss when its co-Executive Director, Dr Stefan Ciobanu was killed in a car accident on 7/10/05. He was driving to visit and help a sick relative - a typical act of kindness - with his brother-in-law, when they were hit head-on by a van. Stefan's brother-in-law, Ovidiu Munteanu, also died. The van driver, a young man, who had fallen asleep at the wheel after a long drive from Hungary, had to have both legs amputated.

Stefan was a major force in FSC and his loss was felt keenly. Nevertheless, after recovering from their initial shock and despair, all the staff of FSC pulled together admirably to cover for his tragic loss and the organisation struggled on.

May he Rest in Peace

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Other outcomes

During the year FSC’s IMPART team trained over 500 people in using the combined arts techniques ie arts therapies for people with special needs.

They also continued to lobby intensely for national accreditation of the role of the Combined Arts Worker with various Romanian government departments.

With our direct funding FSC printed and distributed 2,100 issues of the Impreuna magazine to beneficiaries and staff working in institutions.

We continued to develop the Impreuna National Network of 700 plus organisations and individuals involved in the creative arts for children and adults with special needs.

With funding secured from the EU’s PHARE fund, FSC printed and distributed for free 36,000 copies of the newspaper “Zeletinului Valley-rural realities” to the inhabitants of our target area Podu Turcului, authorities, Ministries, funders and other stakeholders.

FSC reached the final at the Civil Society Gala (Bucharest, May 2006) with our joint “Network of community workers for rural areas” project

FSC organised the Gala of the Beneficiaries a unique event that raised awareness in the local community of the plight of the many people in need in their area.

A group of 10 Romanian NGOs, FONPC (Federation of organisations working in child protection) and representatives of the French Embassy visited our projects for the street children. They were impressed by the various services and the local partnership.

30 volunteers (high school students) spent 3 weeks in the villages organising 3 summer schools projects and engaging over 350 rural children in various educational activities

1,000 issues of the Volunteer's newsletter were printed and distributed to students, teachers, authorities and volunteers.

Meanwhile our other projects also continue as follows:

The Estuar Foundation for Mental Health – administrative support and a Day Centre canteen project:

Our annual funding of £3,420 paid for a weekly cooking and canteen programme in a Day Centre for adults with severe mental health problems, teaching basic life skills and providing a hot meal for 120 people two days a week.

The project is a very effective tool in developing confidence and independence and has enabled beneficiaries to progress to job training and employment.


An Arts and Broadcasting Project in a long stay psychiatric hospital: A modest but highly effective annual investment of c £3,000 provides arts and drama programmes for adults with severe mental and physical disability. This project enables those with severe disability to partake in community life, to advocate for themselves and change the attitudes of society.

The Drama Group led by actor and musician Vali Racila has performed all over Romania.

They operate their own In-House TV And Radio Station broadcasting their productions to all the patients in the psychiatric hospital, who watch with great enthusiasm. This builds a real community spirit and enhances everyone’s confidence.


We continued our work and funding of the Marie-Curie Sklodowska Children’s Hospital, Bucharest aka The Budimex - a large children's hospital - where we are helping reform nursing standards and infection control and paying for a play worker.


We also funded FAST Brasov: a dynamic young Romanian organisation helping the marginalised poor and the young with community and educational projects in the Brasov region.

Plus our training programmes in elderly care, tuberculosis treatment and the creative arts continue to reach a larger national audience.


In 2005 – 2006, our projects served over 8,000 beneficiaries directly.

All of our beneficiaries are among the most marginalised children, sick and elderly in Romania.

 

You can help us to help them by making a quick donation

Thank you for your interest in our work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To See last year's report on our Charity activity in Romania Click here