FLEX Alumni Monthly Report January Moldova
February, 10 2014
Grant and Opportunities Discussion Table
On January 2, Ruxanda Barba '08 organized a discussion table which brought together city reps, and other alumni who discussed project ideas for 2.5 hours at the American Councils office. 13 alumni were present to discuss what they've accomplished so far, and what their ideas for civic engagement are. As some of the project ideas aren't as costly and can be done using existing resources, alumni talked about how to reduce costs and carry on with the project. By the end, alumni had networked and exchanged advice on how to organize their projects better.
FLEX Alumni Reunion
On January 10, Ruxanda Barba '08 organized a FLEX Alumni Reunion with 5 older FLEX Alumni (2007, 2008, 2010, 2011), out of which 2 former Alumni Coordinators. The reunion took place at '513 café', and lasted for 3 hours. Snacks were provided while alumni shared the cost of refreshments on their own. Alumni had a chance to catch up and share their academic and career successes, exchange knowledge on opportunities for youth, discuss projects which they have participated at within their universities which they are attending in Europe, and find a way to implement successful projects in Moldova. Alumni discussed FLEX grant ideas, and discussed great projects which they helped implement in Moldova several years ago, such as Business for Youth. After alumni have exchanged with helpful contacts from their networks, it was decided to apply for another FLEX grant to take on a sequel of the Business for Youth project.
On January 15, Ruxanda Barba '08 and Catalina Cucu '13 visited the 'Aschiuta' orphanage in Chisinau. The alums loaded the winter clothes collected during the winter clothing drive into two taxis and delivered them to the orphanage. The 15 children all found something warm to complete their winter wardrobes with. They found everything from wool socks, to winter coats, to scarves and warm undergarments. As most children commute to school, they are in need of good, warm clothes to make it through the winter without getting sick. This is very important as the children do not have access to good health care.
Pet Shelter Visit
On January 19, 2014; Cucu Catalina, Flex '13; along with another volunteer has visited the dog shelter "Alga". They have bought some bread and milk for the dogs. At the shelter, they have made winter clothes for the dogs from old sweaters; they have also cooked food for the dogs and helped clean up the shelter. They spent there over 4 hours, from 12 till 4 pm. The goal of this activity was to promote activism by helping the ones that cannot ask for it.
AIESEC Youth Opportunities Fair
On January 23, Ruxanda Barba '08, Olga Gustiuc '13, and Iurie Gutu '13 participated with a FLEX Program stand at AIESEC's Youth Opportunities Fair. The event took place at 'Biblioteca B.P. Hasdeu' and lasted from 11am to 6pm. Around 15 other stands from different organizations and programs were also present at the event. The alumni had a poster with pictures of alumni with their host families, school sports team members, with their friends, school teachers, and pictures from where they've travelled around the States during their exchange year. Alumni also presented brochures and flyers, answered young people's and parents' questions about the program. The event gathered around 800 attendees, and 4 TV channels, one of which featured an interview with the FLEX Alumni. The alumni advertised and educated attendees about the exchange program, which is expected to bring more participants in the upcoming year.
Andy's Pizza Factory Tour
On January 24, Ruxanda Barba '08 organized the Andy's Pizza Factory Tour for FLEX alumni and their friends. About 15 people attended, and those who came from the regions were reimbursed for their travel. Andy's Pizza is the biggest family restaurant in Moldova, with 55 restaurants located all around the country. Andy's has also been the pizza supplier for all alumni reunions, and it was a great experience for alumni to see the processes behind the production of their favorite food. Participants saw the factory, working conditions, raw materials and processes which go into preparing all possible foods from stews to cakes and cookies. They also asked the tour guide questions about production and delivery of the food. At the end of the tour each of the participants received a goodie bag filled with Andy's cookies.
Visit to Romanian Shelter
On January 26, 2014; Cucu Catalina, Flex '13; along with 10 students and 2 teacher from her school has volunteered to help the shelter for old handicapped people. They have cleaned up the snow in front of the shelter for over an hour. The shelter is located in Braila, Romania; and it is called "Sf. Dumitru". The goal of this activity was to promote volunteering among young people.
City Rep Planning Meeting
On January 26, Ruxanda Barba '08 organized a City Rep planning meeting at Andy's Pizza. 4 city reps attended the meeting which lasted 2.5 hrs. Alumni were offered pizza and refreshments and travel reimbursement for Liliana Luncari '13 (from Drochia) and Maria Mocanu '13 (from Cimislia). During the meeting city reps discussed what went well and what could be improved in their past activities, they also discussed the limitations in their regions and what activities could be organized, what organizations could be involved in the activities as partners. City Reps discussed potential grant ideas, and how their projects could impact their communities for the best.
On December 29, 2013; Cucu Catalina, Flex '13; organized the event "Elves Reunion". She gathered with a group 13 students in the National Central Park at 5 p.m. The participants received the lyrics of Christmas songs and carols and then marched to the statue of Stefan cel Mare, where they sang those songs. The event lasted for two hours and it was a lot of fun. During it, a lot people have stopped to listen. The goal of this event was to promote the national Christmas traditions and to remind people that you can sing well when somebody else sings with you.
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