At GriDD we feel it is important to not just occupy ourselves with work, but to also try and make the world a little better. This year we support Centrul Şcolar de Educaţie Incluzivă Dumbrăveni, a Romanian school for children with mental and related disabilities such as deafness, blindness, Down’s syndrome, ADHD or microcephaly. At this school there are 120 pupils between 6 and 22 years old, mainly from disadvantaged backgrounds, with a low level of education or from an orphanage. The school offers these children better perspective for their futures and we would like to contribute to that!
We support the children of this Romanian special education school to enrich their world with new experiences and interesting new learning materials.
The world these children interact with isn’t very large. Therfore they can use it to step out of their daily environment and discover new things. Our goal is to provide them with sustainable new experiences that make their world bigger and expand their skills. Let them flourish, feel positive energy and provide extra perspectives for a richer future by making new inspiration and discoveries possible!
What do we hope to achieve with this project?
In collaboration with the school management in Romania we have devised a program that we want to set up which consists of different experiences and new skills. The school management has indicated this would help them most. We want to make the following things possible:
- Workshops for all students at the cultural center nearby. This way they literally step out of their normal world and into a new world. It is not something that would normally be possible which makes it a great way to make a big difference with relatively few resources.
- Lessons at school using (technical) LEGO. For Dutch children playing with LEGO from a young age is usually very normal. LEGO helps with the development of imagination, creativity, construction skills and spatial insights. We will provide LEGO packages and manuals to teachers teach with the learning materials, who are super excited!
Would you like to help us?
In order to make a real and lasting impact on the lives of Romanian school children, we need a lot of resources. We can use your help!
We started a project on onepercentclub.com (in Dutch). This crowdfunding page is dedicated to providing updates on the project and of course: making it possible to donate! By donating only 30 euros you have giving a child a great, fully catered day with workshops at the cultural center. And if you can spend a bit more: only 150 euros will contribute enough to buy a LEGO package with lesson materials so that many children can enjoy learning with new tools. Naturally it is also possible to make a general donation or even look for your own old LEGOs to donate. Every euro and every bag of LEGO helps, so even with few resources you can make a difference!
You can donate via our projectsite online and also our office and during our events of. Take a quick look at the project site and enrich the lives of these Romanian children with learning disabilities!
How did we come to sponsor a school in Romania?
In 2017 our (now former) colleague Thomas Hijl left the organization to take on a different challenge. If someone leaves GriDD, we will always do our best to make that farewell memorable. Thomas expressed a clear request: he would rather have a smaller farewell party and the expenses we would normally have, instead donated to a charity close to his heart: to Centrul Şcolar de Educaţie Incluzivă Dumbrăvei. We liked this so much that we all decided take on a challenge and dedicate our time and effort to raise money in our networks so we can make an even bigger impact.
Thomas explains why Romania is so important to him:
Entrepreneurship, support, transfering knowledge. I would like to do that and promote it: inspire young people in Romania and stand by them.
15 years ago this was a headline for an interview I had given. To this day this remains true for me when it comes to my inspiration and enthusiasm to make a difference in Romania for the less fortunate. In 1996 I traveled to Dumbraveni for the first time and lost my heart there. I was inpired by my parents, who had helped with auxiliary transports to Romania after the fall of the Berlin wall and thus established a bond with the Romanians. It has always been a connection from heart to heart. Romania is a beautiful country, but also a country of extremes when it comes to wealth and poverty. Now, 21 years later, a lot has changed and improved, but there is still a need for support at different places and for different target groups. Which brings me to the school children in Dumbraveni from “Centrul Şcolar de Educaţie Incluzivă Dumbrăvei”. It is important to provide structural and sustainable help to this school. This year I was pleasantly surprised and very grateful that the GriDD’ers pledged their support for a wonderful project.