The forty years of communism left a sad inheritance throughout the territory of the Republic of Moldova: a poor population dropped in moral disorderliness. The Church, which before 1940 had had a flowering life on spiritual, material and social grounds, was forced to concentrate the efforts only for survival, reducing almost integrally its social mission, even if this is fundamental to ecclesiastic life. Nowadays, after 10-15 years of religious liberty, the Church tries to regain the place it had had half a century ago, including return of the traditional social activities.
Thus, in 2001 "Diaconia" Association was founded at Bishop Petru s suggestion. As three years ago the Bessarabian Metropolitan hadt been officially recognized by the regime from Chisinau, "Diaconia" was registered as a non-governmental organization. After Metropolita s registration, "Diaconia" Association has changed its name into Social Mission "Diaconia" belonging to Bessarabian Metropolitan.
As the Metropolitan intends to extend its activity, the preparation of teams and that of social programs were entrust to "Diaconia", so that a social mission could exist in each parish belonging to Bessarabian Metropolitan.
2001 • “Diaconia” Association is registered on June 5th 2001 , with the blessing of His Eminence Petru, Archbishop of Chisinau, Metropolitan of Bessarabia and Exarchate of the Lands.
2002 • “Diaconia” is partner within “Home Care Cania” project, in Cania village, Cantemir district; • We launched “Why not?” project, its aim is to assist socially vulnerable families by giving them the chance to get a job;
2003 • In 2003 Diaconia was officially recognized by authorities as a social structure of Bessarabian Metropolitan. In the same year it launched the first social project “Preventing school abandonment” in Rosu village, Cahul district.
2004 • We inaugurated “St. Vasile cel Mare” Social Center from Cania, Cantemir district. Within the Center, there are conducted activities of non-formal education for children, a social laundry and bath work. A group of volunteers is involved in these activities.
2005 •We created a social canteen in Ulmu village, Ialoveni district; • We inaugurated “Manfredi” Social Centre. Within it, there are organized activities of non-formal education for children from socially vulnerable families; • In “St. Ioan Botezatorul” parish from Leova town, we opened a Social Centre and launched “Towards a family” project. The project purpose is to reestablish gradually the relationship between institutionalized child and his/her biological or extended family, as well as re-socialization and personal development of the child without parental care; •We launched “Solidarity Camps” project, that aims to promote volunteering and animation activities in rural localities. To realize day camps a group of mixed volunteers of “Diaconia’s” Centres and “Caritas Ambrosiana” organization works; • We opened a social canteen in Hagimus village, beneficiaries: children from socially vulnerable families and lonely elderly; • For early detection of breast cancer and to increase the rural population’s access to cancer diagnostic services, we launched “St. Nectarie de Eghina” project — mobile thermograph; • We renovated the building of the kindergarten from Sloveanca village and inaugurated a social canteen in the same locality.
2006 • We equipped the kindergarten from Buzdugeni village, Edinet district; • We opened “St. Stelian” Parochial Centre in Crasnoarmeiscoe, Hincesti district, the provided services are: social hairdresser, activities of non-formal education for children through the involvement of a group of volunteers.
2007 • We launched “Church against human trafficking” programme in partnership with International Organisation for Migration; • We opened Parochial Centre from Coscalia, Causeni district and launched “School of the Future” project through which 48 women were trained in management and small business development, computer operation, accounting and auditing; • We launched the Strategy to promote volunteering, “One for all and all for future”; • In Orhei, we inaugurated “Towards Independence” Social Apartment, its aim is social reintegration of the orphan and socially orphan girls, leavers of the residential institutions; • To promote “Diaconia’s” image and increase the number of institutions / persons who support initiatives of the organization, we launched “Five Talents” (PR & Fundraising) project; • We inaugurated a Parochial Centre in Coscalia, Causeni district, which has a team of volunteers and here there are conducted activities of non-formal education for children with school problems, at risk of school abandonment and / or with parents gone abroad, as well as social activities for elderly.
2008 • Within the Volunteers Festival, “Diaconia” obtained the first prize for the categories: “The youngest volunteer” (8 years old) and “The eldest volunteer” (88 years old); • There is organized “An Apple for Your Health” Campaign in order to inform women about breast cancer. 2009 • We launched “A bridge of flowers, not drugs” cross-border project realized in partnership with “Solidarity and Hope” Foundation (Iasi). The Project aims to prevent the drugs consumption; • We organized the first charity concert for fundraising with the aim to equip “In Mother’s Arms” Maternal Centre (Chisinau, “Serghei Lunchevici” National Philharmonic); • A group composed of the most active volunteers from Parochial Centers of “Diaconia” benefited from an exchange of experience in Italy, in order to be acquainted with the activities of non-formal education realized by volunteers from this country; • We opened the Social Centre from Ucrainca; within it a social canteen works and educational activities for children are conducted.
2010 • We inaugurated “In Mother’s Arms” Counseling Centre to support mother — child couples in need. Provided services: spiritual, material, psychological and psycho-social assistance; • We realized the second charity concert of “In Mother’s Arms” programme (Chisinau, The National Opera and Ballet Theatre); • Five Parochial Centres were equipped with football tables within “Sports in parish” project, and in “St. Vasile cel Mare” Centre from Cania (Cantemir district), construction of a sports field is started.
2011 (Access the Annual Report 2011) • To ensure the right to every child to grow in family, on 10 of September we inaugurated “In Mother’s Arms” Maternal Centre — the largest social establishment of the Metropolitan Church of Bessarabia. At the moment, 7 mother — child couples in need are accommodated in the Centre, and 14 other benefit from support in community; • In “From Mothers to Mothers” Christmas Campaign, 100 mothers and volunteers were near us. Together we promoted solidarity to support mother — child couples in need. The accumulated funds as a result of the campaign were directed to maintain the beneficiaries of the Maternal Centre; • “Towards Independence” Project, implemented by “Diaconia” in Orhei, through the “St. Vasile de la Poiana Marului” parish, obtained “Country Winner” title within the contest for the ERSTE Foundation Award for Social Integration 2011; • To prevent alcohol and drug consumption, and to conciliate the addicted and co-addicted people, we launched “Cross-border Cooperation for a Life without Drugs” European Project; • A lot of humanitarian aid consisting of 6 840 hygienic packages and of 4 470 school supplies packages donated by “Church World Service”, were distributed to children from socially vulnerable families and to elderly, through parishes of the Metropolitan Church of Bessarabia and partners of “Diaconia”. The Italian newspaper, “Gazzetta dello sport” donated a lot of sport inventory (balls, sportswear, etc.) which will be used to organize summer camps and sports activities in the Parochial Centers; • The social activity of the Metropolitan Church of Bessarabia extends also in Soroca, where we inaugurated a Parochial Centre, “St. Martiri Brancoveni”. In this Centre, there are organized educational activities for children from socially vulnerable families and the lonely elderly from the locality are supported through volunteers’ involvement; • Children from Orhei town, Coscalia village (Causeni) and Rosu village (Cahul) “tasted” the joy of the game and the lonely elderly had a support in household chores, during Summer Camps realized by the mixed teams of volunteers from Italy and Moldova; • “Table of Joy” Easter Campaign involved 300 pupils of 7 educational institutions in realizing a collection of food products for supporting lonely elderly.
2012 (Access the Annual Report 2012) • During 14-21 February period, we offered blankets to 500 people from the districts affected by frost (lonely elderly and children from social vulnerable families); • In April we inaugurated “Saint Stelian” Parochial Centre (Fetesti village, Edinet district); • During “Table of Joy” Easter Campaign we collected 1500 kg of food products. These products were distributed to 220 lonely elderly - beneficiaries of the Parochial Centers, and to the 2 social canteens, where 20 elderly benefit from a hot meal daily; • For the 6th consecutive year, in the summer, we organized The Solidarity Camps in 4 localities from Moldova; • On the 22nd of November we organized The International Scientific-practical Conference “Close to you” The Orthodox Church — promoter of the integrated social intervention; • Within the Volunteers’ Festival, the 10th edition, Diaconia was designated as the most active organization which promotes volunteering in the Republic of Moldova; • During “From Mothers to Mothers” Christmas Campaign we collected about 52 000 MDL and 3500 of clothes to support mother–child couples in need.
2013 (Access the Annual Report 2013) • In January, we launched “Hope to a new life” project, within which 2 994 young people from 15 educational institutions took part in the informative lessons and 34 people benefited of counseling in the field of drug consumption prevention; • Starting with April, 2 innovative services in the social field began to function in Chisinau: the mobile social canteen and the goods storage, components of “Near the Neighbor” project; • During the Easter Campaign, “Table of Joy” we involved over 200 volunteers, we collected over 7 tons of food products and 27 280 MDL. From these resources, 300 elderly received food packages and, during the year, there were offered 8 854 of hot meals to the beneficiaries of the social canteens: “Near the Neighbor” (Chisinau) and “St. Maria Magdalena” (Rosu village, Cahul district); • We distributed food packages to the people affected by floods from Opaci village, Causeni district; • In October, Her Royal Highness, the Princess Margareta of Romania visited “In Mother’s Arms” Maternal Centre; • On 1st October, in collaboration with 3 partner organizations we launched the project “Children with Future – a Future for Children”, designed to promote a pro-life behavior among children and young people; • Within the 11th edition of the Volunteers’ Festival, “Diaconia” Social Mission was awarded for The most creative photo and for The youngest volunteer; • During “From Mothers to Mothers” Christmas Campaign, from donations, we collected over 53 000 MDL for the equipment of the transitional house for orphan mothers, a project which will be launched in 2014, as well as clothes, toys and food products in sum of over 35 000 MDL for the Maternal Centre’s beneficiaries; • In December, Church World Service donated a batch of humanitarian aid which consisted of 4 470 school supplies kits and 6 840 hygienic articles for the support of Parochial Centers’ beneficiaries.
2014 (Access the Annual Report 2014) • During the Easter Campaign, “Table of Joy” we involved over 300 volunteers, we collected over 13 tons of food products and over 50 000 MDL. From these resources, we offered 8286 of hot meals to 214 beneficiaries of the social canteen “Near the Neighbour” and distributed 500 food packages to elderly and to socially vulnerable families from the whole territory of Republic of Moldova. • We helped 28 families from Chisinau affected by fire on 1st of May. We distributed to these families food packages, hygienic products and school supplies. • In June we organized summer camps for approximately 450 children from 5 regions of Moldova. This activity is a part of the project “Children with future – a Future for Children”, designed to promote a pro-life behaviour among children and young people. • 300 children from localities: Cania (Cantemir district), Slobozia Mare (Cahul district), Boghenii Noi (Ungheni district), Ucrainca (Causeni district) and Fetesti (Edi - net district) have been involved in a camp at their home through the “Solidarity Camps” Project. • In October, 80 school age children attended the Children for Children Marathon and thanks to them 20 children, who don’t attend school from financial reasons, received shoes for the cold season. • During the year, “In Mother’s Arms” Maternal Centre assisted 20 mother-child couples, 10 of them have managed to reintegrate (they have improved the relationship with their family, the mother found a job and the child went to nursery). • During “From Mothers to Mothers” Christmas Campaign, from donations, we collected over 40 000 MDL for providing children from the Maternal Center with necessary things for a decent life with their mothers. • We inaugurated in Chisinau the second residential structure: Social Establishment “Mitropolitul Iosif Naniescu”. This establishment will host 3 of Diaconia’s projects: “Towards Independence” Social Apartment, “Casa Maria” transitional house for orphan mothers and “Near the Neighbour” Mobile Social Canteen. • The best volunteer of the years, named within The Volunteers Festival, is a volunteer of Diaconia.
2015 (Access the Annual Report 2015) • We supported 182 families in crisis situations. • We offered assistance to 30 mother-child couples in order to prevent the abandon. • 272 children benefited of daily assistance in community centers. • 750 children from rural communities attended summer camps for free. • We organized informative lessons on social topics for 3321 pupils. • Since July, the 9th generation of girls was assisted within Social Apartment project. All of them are attending baker-chef classes. • The best picture which reflects the volunteering (nominated during the Festival of Volunteers) is a picture from the social mobile canteen “Near the neighbour”. • Within the Easter Campaign “Table of Joy” we collected more than 22 tons of food products and 35 000 MDL. From these resources we offered 25 000 hot meals to those 214 beneficiaries of the social mobile canteen “Near the Neighbour” and we distributed 800 food packages to elderly people and to socially vulnerable families from Moldova. • Within the Children’s Marathon “Champions of Goodness” and the awareness raising campaign “With Love for Ukraine” we collected about 15 000 MDL and 4 tons of clothes and food products for the internally displaced people from Odessa (Ukraine). • Within the Christmas Campaign “From Mothers to Mothers” we collected from donations more than 50 000 MDL and about 500 kg of products ( clothes, toys) for the beneficiaries of the program “In mother’s arms” . • 20 economical agencies and thousands of people donated products for Diaconia’s beneficiaries and for the organization of fundraising campaigns. Other 40 companies and hundreds of people supported us financially. • Within Diaconia’s projects were involved more than 1000 volunteers. •
Activity Report Pictures, success stories and indicators regarding our activity are published in the Annual Reports of “Diaconia” Social Mission
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