Nedenstående beskrivelse (foreløbig på engelsk) af mine Rumæniens-aktiviteter sendte jeg i august 2015 til Craica-gruppen og samtidig bad jeg om at få lov til at møde gruppen og tale med dem om problemerne i Craica-bosættelsen. Møderne i den uge, jeg var dernede, førte så til hjælpearbejdet for Craica, som kortfattet er beskrevet på denne hjemmeside.
1. The very beginning: In 2007 a man from a local aid programme asked at my school if we were interested in a cooperation with a Romanian School in Copaceni, Comuna Sandulesti. We said yes and started a process which should lead to an exchange of students and teachers (EU comenius programme).
2. 2008 The Director from the Romanian school, Mr. Duca, and two other teachers were in DK for a preparatory meeting.
3. 2009 I and a colleague of me visited Copaceni, a meeting which made me “fall in love with Romania”.
My daughter and I visited Romania in October privately.
4. 2010 the Romanian students and four teachers were going to visit DK. At that time I had retired from school.
Mr. Duca rented a bus to save money, and he brought 14 extra adults to DK. I made a separate program for them, and they visited schools, institutions and so on.
The student exchanges was a major success, and also the 14 adults was very happy with their visit in Denmark. On of them was Anna Greab.
In August Anna Greab and Mr. Duca telephoned me and asked if I possibly could collect clothes for poor children in Copaceni. I said yes.
In October Mr. Duca telephoned me again and asked if I could help with paying transportation of 35 poor children to the school in Copaceni. I said yes and started activities to collect money.
5. 2011 the Danish students, three teachers and I visited Romania. Another great extperience.
6. 2012 In June my wife and I visited in private Bagaciu (60 km west of Saschiz).
In July Mr. Duca called me and told that he had become the mayor in Comuna Sandulesti (the two villages Sandulesti and Copaceni), and that he had promised his electors to visit Denmark to find investments for his municipality.
I invited him but I couldn’t promise any investments at all.
I arranged a busy week for him (and his daughter as his translator) in August, but in the month before his arrival I did a lot of thinking about what could be valuable for his two villages.
We visited a very small, green dairy, a biogas plant, a wind power plant and a lot of other things. But the most important to me was to introduce him to our way of running villages bottom up instead of top down. That was very unfamiliar to him.
When he came back to Romania he invited the citizens to a meeting to tell about his visit in Denmark.
Anna Greab wrote to me afterwards and said that she was very disappointed because the women’s opinion was not listened to.
That was the turning point to me with respect to my engagement in Copaceni. I proposed her to establish a team of citizens herself and start a local movement, and then I wrote to her a lot about our villages and all the associations we have to engage citizens.
Her team arranged citizens meeting in both villages, English courses, flower and blueberry planting, removing waste from the roadside and from their beautiful nature, four of them took courses in starting and running a company……
7. 2013. In april I arranged a trip for six Danish key persons to the villages, and we had a lot of talking about tourism down there.
8. When we came home we decided to invite ten Romanian key persons (but common citizens) from the villages to our area in Denmark for free. The topic was tourism, and it was an intensive week.
In October a small group from here was visiting Copaceni as tourists to “test” the effect of our summer meeting.
Other tourist projects are in the melting pot.
9. In 2014 I went to “my villages” on my own, and had a lot of visits in private homes to talk with many citizens.
I don’t know what my/our initiatives Comuna Sandulesti are leading to in the end, but one thing is unmistakable:
A lot of citizens in the two villages now have an optimistic view on their situation and a lot of local activities based on our cooperation are taken place in the villages.
In addition I have for the last five years delivered 200 – 300 big bags per year of clothes and shoes for poor children in the area, and also I have collected about 8000 Euro as a help to a school bus for poor children.
You may also have a look here: www.copaceni.dk (not quite up to date)
10. In November 2014 two friends of mine visited the Pata Rat dump in Cluj to donate clothes and food, and they told me about the terrible situation for the inhabitants of that dump.
This experience led to my next step:
11. I made and homepage with the purpose to stop extreme poverty in the EU:
You may have a look at that page too.
I know that this initiative is naive but although I am hoping for a fruitful result of my efforts.
That the background for my contact to your group.