Community Involvement Report 2012
   

The story in numbers

45.000 Euro

was Petrom`s contribution allotted to the Foundation for Development of the Civil Society

7

projects financed by Petrom

650

individuals informed about the projects

67

participants in the vocational training courses

300

participants in non-formal education activities

The network

The importance of community centers and organizations and what has to be done to make them stronger.

The fact that information and knowledge mean power has long ceased to be a secret. Moreover, information is the foundation of any action, whether it is a small business, particular needs or vocational retraining.

Ionuț Sibian, executive manager of the Foundation for Civil Society Development (FDSC), gave us an interview explaining the importance of an NGO network that should connect communities together.

How important is for communities to create an NGO and community center infrastructure?

Ionuț Sibian: For organizations and community centers, infrastructure means better development of their activities. Even more than infrastructure, it is essential that the organizations collaborate and work together within a network, becoming stronger through the exchange of resources and expertise, and meeting the needs of the community through the involvement of its members.

”This financing method provided the organizations with grants worth a total of 100,000 dollars […]”

Our starting point was to help the community by financing projects carried out by NGOs, with an aim to identify community needs in a participative manner, involving the community itself in solving these needs...

Last year`s partnership with Petrom is one such example, as it enabled creation of the financing line ”Community Stimulation and Development”, as part of the financing tool operated by FDSC itself, i.e. the program ”The Fund for Civic Innovation”; which aims to respond to the current situation and needs of the Romanian civil society including community needs, with an emphasis on civic initiatives. This financing method provided the organizations with grants worth a total of 100,000 dollars, and both Petrom and FDSC had equal contributions to that fund.

“Whether it involves civism, public participation or vocational training, anything can be learned through non-formal education, anywhere and at any time.”

Since you brought Petrom up – in which communities were the projects included in this partnership carried out?

Ionuț Sibian: Petrom`s interest in rural areas or the southern part of the country, where the NGO sector is less developed, provided FDSC with an regional development opportunity, while enabling our organization to meet its strategic goals.

For the first time, FDSC had the opportunity to finance projects in Băicoi (Prahova); Bustuchin (Gorj); Poboru (Olt); Moinești și Zemeș (Bacău); Schela (Galați); Suplacu de Barcău (Bihor). In every single one of these communities, a non-governmental organization was identified or created, with the help and at the initiative of the active members of these communities.

Hence, three new organizations were founded in Poboru, Băicoi and Bustuchin, with direct involvement from community members, such as local authorities, teachers, working citizens, business representatives.

How were FDSC actions received by the community?

Ionuț Sibian: We are confident in the success of the financed projects, considering that we informed about 1,500 individuals during local events, press conferences, project launches, local fairs, debates with local authority representatives, workshops or training and networking sessions.

During the training sessions, we trained 125 individuals (construction worker, trainer, facilitator, project manager). After finishing the courses, several persons started various endeavors to obtain some additional income: they bought animals to raise, gathered information on raising technologies and risks, debated the topic and asked for a simulated business plan.

”Non-formal education contributes to gaining awareness of one`s needs; it is focused on, and answers to the real needs of the community; it is centered on the beneficiaries and their need to learn […]”

Apart from these organizations, 125 individuals were gathered into local initiative or community support groups. About 400 children, youngsters and teachers took part in various activities of non-formal education (creative workshops, holiday schools, clubs).

You mentioned non-formal education, a concept we hear about ever more frequently. How does this type of education help people in their day-to-day lives?

Non-formal education contributes to gaining awareness of one`s needs; it is focused on, and answers to the real needs of the community; it is centered on the beneficiaries and their need to learn; it is adapted to the group and/or individual and it involves learning at one`s own pace. It has clear learning objectives, it is planned, structured, well organized and requires effective resource management.

Moreover, every creative non-formal activity increases group cohesion and develops the participants’ communication skills. We encourage non-formal education in any field. Whether it involves civism, public participation or vocational training, anything can be learned through non-formal education, anywhere and at any time. It cares not about age, space, or time, and finds specific solutions so that specific groups may learn new things.

” For the first time, FDSC had the opportunity to finance projects in Băicoi (Prahova); Bustuchin (Gorj); Poboru (Olt); Moinești și Zemeș (Bacău); Schela (Galați); Suplacu de Barcău (Bihor). In every single one of these communities, a non-governmental organization was identified or created, with the help and at the initiative of the active members of these communities.”
Community Involvement Report 2012
NGO Support