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Author: Editor ARCA

Interview winth Anastasiia
Projects Projects in Progress Projects in the European Community Ukraine Now

Interview – Insights on integration in Romania

Interview – Insights on integration in Romania Please tell us a little bit about yourself Anastasiia My name is Anastasiia. I’m from Odessa, Ukraine. I’m 38, married with a child. I like to travel and have visited a lot of interesting places. Like to watch people and learn new cultures. Worked at the Medical University for 15 years at the department of Foreign languages. I have a lot of relatives and friends. I’m an open-minded, communicative and responsible person. Have a lot of experience working with people and teaching.   How did you arrive in Romania? Did you come alone or together with your family? I came to Romania in December 2022 with my husband, daughter and our dog. My daughter and I were in Ireland before, but decided to move closer to our homeland. My husband joined us. How were you greeted by the Romanian community? I had a good experience with Romanian volunteers that I met in May 2022, when I first came to Romania. First I crossed the border with Romania on a ferry. We were met by wonderful hearty people from the Red Cross who made shelter in Isakcha and greeted Ukrainians. They helped us to get to Bucharest where we had a flight to Dublin. When I rejected the Irish Protection and came to Romania in December it wasn’t easy to collect all the information and receive Temporary Protection here. We found different resources online with explanations of where to go and how to organize our documents. What difficulties did you encounter? First of all is a language barrier. I was sure that it wouldn’t be a problem to communicate in English, but lucky me, I often face people who don’t speak English, especially in day-to-day life. Second problem was accommodation. It was difficult to find a flat. We changed several places. Hopefully, we found a nice owner and have been renting a flat for a year. And the last difficulty is laws and procedures which are not usual sometimes and take too much time to solve. How was your integration process for you and your family? I easily found an educational hub for my daughter. Unfortunately she doesn’t receive a complete education in Romania. She doesn’t know Romanian well enough to study in local schools and we decided to continue her education online in Ukrainian school and offline here in the hub for socialization. She also plays basketball in a local team with Romanian children. And visits different clubs here. As for me, I found a job one month after my arrival in ARCA Romanian Forum for Refugees and Migrants in a position of translator. And now occupy the double position of a translator and database operator.  How did ARCA support you particularly? I work in a good team. My colleagues are very supportive and always ready to help. We often eat together and share differences in our cultures. One of my colleagues, Mihaela, helped to find a place for my daughter in a basketball team. My daughter participates in different events which ARCA performs, not because she is my daughter, but as a beneficiary of ARCA’s Club. And we also received some financial help as well as other beneficiaries of ARCA. The most that I appreciate is that ARCA gives me the ability to help Ukrainians. We receive a lot of requests from our beneficiaries and try to solve their issues together. What did you find valuable in Romania? Romania looks like my Ukraine, similar culture, history, religion, traditions and weather. For me it’s valuable that I can watch movies in the cinema in English. Nature is valuable to me and I like to travel around Romania and visit its authentic cities. And I appreciate that Romania accepted so many Ukrainians, but I’m disappointed that the Government doesn’t fulfill its obligations regarding EU support programs.  What are your plans for the future if returning to Ukraine would not be an option? Do you think about staying in Romania or going to another country? I was always a person who made plans and tried to achieve them. But our War in Ukraine taught me that everything could be damaged in one second. Now I don’t make plans in advance. I live in a flow. Until I have a job here I feel safe, because I know that I can pay my rent, bills, and food. Until circumstances don’t push me to the next step I won’t plan. My favorite quote is “I can’t think about that right now. If I do, I’ll go harmful. I’ll think about that tomorrow.” by Scarlett O’Hara from Gone with the Wind. The current article is part of a series of communication materials with the overall objective to increase awareness around migration-related issues through #constructive narratives. The project #UkraineNow is co-financed by the European Union through Erasmus+. The European Commission’s support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the content, which reflects only the views of the authors. The Commission cannot be held responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained therein.

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Ukraine now
Projects Projects in Progress Projects in the European Community Ukraine Now

Ukraine Now

Ukraine Now – Transffering skills în an emergency context During 5 to 8 September ARCA has participated in a 4 days training event held within the Erasmus project “Ukraine Now”. We participate on this training together with representatives of the partner NGOs’ Mareena Slovakia, OCC Spain and OCC Greece. During the whole week we have had discussions. On the situation of Ukrainian refugees in Romania. On impacts for ARCA and casework on how ARCA’s educational projects adapted. And also on what adaptations need to be done further. The same was presented by our colleagues from Slovakia, Mareena. We have also learned more about the activities of OCC Spain and Greece and visited the office of OCC Spain. Moreover, we discussed the updates on the raising awareness campaign we are undergoing within the project, as well as worked on designing an action plan towards the new adaptations considered within each organization.    Ukraine now is one of our projects through which we try to make life easier for migrants and refugees from Ukraine. We consider that Ukrainian citizens fleeing the war deserve a softer fate. They also deserve a chance to integrate into European society. As a result, we decided to lend them a helping hand and for that we had to thank our Erasmus+ partner for the kindness of supporting our cause. This project is co-funded by the European Union.  Under grant agreement 2022-1-ES02-KA220-YOU-000086377.

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Survey
Projects Projects in Progress Projects in the European Community

Survey to find out the needs of migrants

Survey on what people fleeing conflict need in Romania In April and July, ARCA launched a survey in which it asked questions to discover the vision and experience of humanitarian migrants regarding accessing essential services in Romania. The questions were designed to find out more about the need of people fleeing Ukraine for food, shelter, health services, acquiring language skills, accessing education and finding a job. Basic needs revealed by the survey: food/clothing/hygiene products People mentioned initially that the coordination between authorities and grassroots organizations ensured access to basic necessities, such as food, clothing, hygiene essentials, and no issues were reported in this regard in April. shelter The emergency government ordinance 15/2022 implementing such humanitarian assistance measures was amended in May 2022. Its housing programme created to sustain a large number of humanitarian migrants suffered changes that are still undergoing implementation issues, as the monthly payments for housing and food expenses were not granted, thus creating imbalance and uncertainty for people in need of such supportive integration measures. This issue is awaiting resolution. While some people reported the need to move and find another place to live or even to return to the host country or move to another country, other people reported that mutual understanding and kindness were the foundation of their good relationship with the flat owners. healthcare services In the picture below, it can be seen how in April people fleeing Ukraine reported accessing healthcare services: When asked how they communicated with the doctor, 30.8% reported that they were helped by a translator, 26.3% used Google translator or similar online translation apps, 20.2% were speaking English or Romanian, 12.6% reported that the doctor was speaking Russian/Ukrainian. The remaining percentage of people did not need a doctor. In July, 31.7% of respondents mentioned that there is at least one member within their family with a disability, while 68.3% reported no disabilities. Out of the 31.7%, 11% are being offered social support, 21.7% remaining without assistance. language, access to education, finding employment language In our July needs assessment, the most commonly identified language needs were related to employment (e.g., workplace communication, job interviews) and everyday interactions (e.g., shopping, public transportation). They also expressed the need for language support in healthcare settings, including doctor visits and medical terminology comprehension. When asked what their plans for the future are, some of them answered that they need English and Romanian for both short-and long-term stay in the host country. access to education In April, one participant in our focus group discussions outlined that adaptation to Romanian government requirements is necessary to benefit from facilities. However, proximity to Ukraine makes it more difficult to assume the integration process fully, consequently, to enroll children in the Romanian public educational system. If they had been located further away from their home country, they would have adapted faster to the new society. Also in April, our needs assessment concluded that 43,7% of respondents had their children enrolled in online Ukrainian schools, while 22,7% answered that their children are enrolled in Ukrainian educational hubs in Romania. 10,9% reported having their children included in the Romanian public educational system. In July, we addressed similar questions related to education: When asked about how many children there were in the family, 35,4% answered that they have 2 children. 32,9% have one child, followed by 14,6% with no children, and 9,8% with 3 children. While 2 respondents have 5 or more children, and 1 has 4. On enrollment, 48,8% answered that they did not enroll their children in school/kindergarten, but they are searching for one. 25,6% have their children enrolled in school for less than 4 hours per day. While 23,2% have their children going to school or kindergarten between 4 and 8 hours daily. 2,4% don’t have children. Out of the 48,8% above, 31,7% mentioned that they need support with identifying a school or kindergarten. 17% do not need such support. finding employment An average of 62,2% of people from our 2 assessments conducted in July are currently unemployed in Romania, while 16,8% are working part-time and 14,2% have a full-time job. The following roles were mentioned: teacher, interior designer, business manager, lawyer, realtor, machine operator, cleaning personnel, psychologist, IT, engineer, massage therapist. Among reasons for impossibility to currently work, our respondents mentioned: child care; enrollment in school; language barrier; disabilities; other serious health issues; being older people. 85.2% of respondents have at least one child in their care. Derived conclusions from the survey: on language acquiring needs The language support initiatives should prioritize developing tailored language programs that address the specific needs identified by migrants, implicitly a focus to be put on designing language courses that incorporate vocabulary and scenarios relevant to employment, healthcare, and daily life interactions. Efforts should be made to enhance the accessibility of language learning resources, including online materials. Flexible language learning options, such as morning, evening or weekend classes, both online and offline can accommodate the diverse schedules of migrants. Additional support, such as language buddies or peer tutoring, can be established to provide opportunities for practice and enhance confidence in speaking. on other essential needs Based on the findings of the report, it can be concluded that employment support, as well as support with identifying a school/kindergarten would be needed, especially during August and September, when the housing programme will impose employment as a prerequisite for receiving financial assistance for housing. With regards to any further financial assistance, it can be highlighted that the most vulnerable categories of people in need of such support will be mothers with young children in care and not able to work, as well as older people and people with disabilities. The current article is part of a series of communication materials with the overall objective to increase awareness around migration-related issues through #constructive narratives. The project #UkraineNow is co-financed by the European Union through Erasmus+. The European Commission’s support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the content, which reflects only

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Integration
Projects Projects in Progress Projects in the European Community Ukraine Now

Necessary steps in integration

NECESSARY STEPS IN INTEGRATION Brief overview of good practices on post-pandemic education and employment for humanitarian migrants to facilitate integration Once arrived in a new country, either forcefully or voluntarily, any human being needs to go through the process of integration. While the new society would make their services available to progressively assimilate them. Learning the language is the most important step for any newcomer into Romanian society. Having a common language is a prerequisite for further integration prospects, particularly for humanitarian migrants who have not chosen to leave their home country due to their own will. As a result of the pandemic period most organizations have adapted their services to the online environment. Therefore we have also developed online courses both for Romanian and English languages. Incertitudinea zilei de mâine – factor demotivant If we can take into account the situation humanitarian migrants face such as the uncertainty of the short to long term perspectives of their future considering the geopolitical context, the loss and hardships of leaving home and the pressure to adapt to the new society with different language, social and cultural requirements, putting life on hold can not be an option for too long. One of the most difficult things observed in practice is how to adapt faster to the new situation in which humanitarian migrants find themselves in leaving fear, non-acceptance or denial of reality aside and to better understand how to support them on this path, by involving them also in the process. Creating a new scenario where the current situation can be used as a fuel for the future adds up to the need to consider the best ways in which education can be of use to humanitarian migrants. As the Romanian class can be of little or no interest for someone who considers its time in Romania is limited, English classes can be a way for learning a language of common use in Europe and its benefit stays longer regardless of the geopolitical situation herein. Other topics of interest related to education can be workshops and training on human rights, children’s rights, parenting, conflict resolution etc. The online environment does come with advantages and disadvantages extended accessibility less time and costs related to reaching classes flexibility of the programme (days and hours) multimedia resources available (visuals are a plus for learning) the need to have a good connection to the internet and access to the new technology (a prerequisite for online classes) minimum technological skills for learning optimization the need for self-discipline and less interaction with peers As each individual is unique we consider adjusting our services for both online and offline learning sessions in order to better address the needs of the people, highlighting the importance of the existing opportunities and focusing more on constructive perspectives for short to long term. Economic inclusion implies cooperation and communication. Financial resources represent an essential component in reaching self-sustainability and redeveloping the ability to support the loved ones. Having a secure livelihood and good health is the basis on which the other aspects of integration can be built. This process could be extremely strenuous. Especially  if there is war trauma involved, family members to support, no savings available and limited knowledge or resources about the steps to be taken in achieving economic independence in the new country. This is where support measures, when correctly implemented, strengthen one’s power to move forward. Continuous coordination between human beings demonstrates the principle of interdependence and can be extremely beneficial to jumpstart the newcomer’s future. Such coordination requires some key steps to be followed: 1. Raising awareness brings up ATTENTION on the importance of the PROBLEM; 2. Creating the link between the main actors such as AUTHORITY – PRIVATE SECTOR – BENEFICIARY; 3. Willingness of the person to integrate – support structures can be successful in achieving their purpose only when humanitarian migrants make the effort to grow and overcome challenges; 4. Maintaining and developing the RELATION created; 5. Building up further opportunities. There are certain gaps in a society’s structure that can only be filled through common vision, trust and efforts from all sides involved in order for any human being, no matter their nationality, to have their dignity restored. The current article is part of a series of communication materials with the overall objective to increase awareness around migration-related issues through #constructive narratives. The project #UkraineNow is co-financed by the European Union through Erasmus+. The European Commission’s support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the content, which reflects only the views of the authors. The Commission cannot be held responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained therein.

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Communication on the subject of migration
Projects Projects in Progress Projects in the European Community

Communication on the subject of migration

Communication on the subject of migration A guide for small and medium-sized NGOs.     Communication on the subject of migration is an aspect that cannot be neglected. The way in which this communication process is carried out can substantially determine the degree of awareness regarding the phenomenon of migration and implicitly the flow of refugees. At the same time, good communication can facilitate the inclusion of displaced people in local communities. In this sense, through the European project Ukraine Now, a guide was developed. This guide is primarily addressed to small and medium-sized NGOs. Implemented between November 2022 and October 2024, Ukraine Now brings together four European organizations active in the field of migration:  Mareena (Slovakia); ARCA Romanian Forum for Refugees and Migrants (Romania); pen Cultural Center (Greece); Open Cultural Center (Spain).     The project is co-financed by the European Union through Erasmus+ through grant agreement 2022-1-ES02-KA220-YOU-000086377. The European Commission’s support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the content, which reflects only the views of the authors. The Commission cannot be held responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained therein.

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Experiential learning
Migrants Club

Experiential learning

In nature we become more energetic, more creative, more curious, because it is an unparalleled source for experiential learning! Nature helps us find peace, because it generously offers us color, harmony and comfort, it also stimulates our experiential learning. Outside the home or study classes we become more intuitive. This is because we no longer live only with the mind and body but also with the soul. The ARCA team puts individual needs first. We wish for the participants of the Arca’s Club for Ukrainian mother and children project, financed by KNH, to feel in harmony with themselves and with everything that surrounds them. A study has shown that just by looking at the color green, our inventiveness increases. Nature, therefore, improves our focus and can reduce our stress. Basically, nature has provided us with a new space for learning Romanian and English, creating positive experiences for the participants of ARCA’s Club for Ukrainian mother and children. Arca’s Club for Ukrainian mother and children project aims to lend a helping hand to Ukrainian refugees The organization of integrated actions in the Village Museum, the Botanical Garden, the Children’s Town, Cișmigiu Park have brought multiple benefits. In addition to the relaxing walk and stories about the history of the place, the Romanian and English language classes, outside the four walls of the classroom, were based on experiential learning. Didactic materials from nature were used, also drawing on practical life experiences. Adjectives and nouns learned only in textbooks have been found here in their perfect form. During the experiential learning process, the student gets involved actively, interactively, collaboratively. Thus the learner asks questions, investigates, experiments, becomes curious, develops creativity and critical thinking. The benefits of these integrated activities are significant both pedagogically and physically, psychologically and socially. Children, but also adults connected with nature, socialized, had fun, learned, collaborated better in this environment. So the quality of learning has increased. At the same time, the well-being established both in children, adults and teachers, was felt at the end of each day spent outdoors.

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La pas prin București - Arca club
Migrants Club

La pas prin București

La pas prin București Activități cultural educaționale pentru mame și copii ucraineni.        Peste 150 de persoane refugiate au participat prin inițiativa “La pas prin București” la activități. Acestea au venit în completarea educației tradiționale, desfășurându-se  în săptămâna 27-31 martie 2023.     Pentru o mai bună integrare în societate am ales o sapatamană în care copiii ucrainieni au avut vacanță școlară și am oferit activități non formale. Activitățile au fost organizate în diferite puncte de atracție ale capitalei.     Teatrul Odeon, Muzeul Național de Artă și Muzeul Satului Dimitrie Gusti, au fost gazdele noastre. Pe parcursul incursiunii în arta și istoria României.    ARCA a oferit, cu ajutorul KNH, un cadru optim pentru activități recreative, asigurând întâlniri și vizite interactive. Programul a avut drept obiectiv cunoașterea patrimoniului cultural românesc ca rol social în comunitățile beneficiarilor.     Scopul acestor evenimente este acela de a stimula procesul pozitiv de integrare, de a crea sentimentul de apartenență și a încuraja curiozitatea beneficiarilor în ceea ce privește moștenirea culturală românească și comună, identificând modalități de asimilare a obiceiurilor și tradițiilor românești La pas prin București – o inițiativă ARCA     Activitățile au fost centrate pe nevoile și interesele individuale oferind întelegere mai amplă asupra societății, descoperind lucruri noi asupra exteriorului dar și sinelui, ceea ce poate duce la formarea unui set propriu de valori.     O săptămână plină de activități, o săptămână în care experiența dobândită a devenit propriul patrimoniu de cunoaștere.       Activitățile desfășurate fac parte din proiectul nostru “ARCA’s CLUB for Ukrainian mothers and children”. Proiect ce a luat naștere din dorința de a întinde o mână de ajutor refugiaților din Ucraina. Dorim să mulțumim pe această cale fințatorului nostru, KNH, fără ajutorul căruia misiunea noastră ar fi fost cu mult îngreunată. Nu în ultimul rând adresăm calde mulțumiri instituțiilor din București care au susținut cu amabilitate și profesioalism demersul nostru.

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Arca's club Ukrainian mothers and children
Migrants Club Projects in Progress

Arca’s club

ARCA’s club pentru mame și copii ucrainieni ARCA și KNH spirjină mame și copii din Ucraina      ARCA anunță implementarea proiectului “ARCA‘s CLUB for Ukrainian mothers and children”. Acest proiect se derulează pe perioada 15.11.2022 – 15.05.2023, cu ajutorul  finanțatorului nostru, organizatia Kindernothilfe. ARCA’s club – obiectiv      Proiectul are ca principal obiectiv facilitarea incluziunii locale a mamelor cu copii din Ucraina. Obiectivul urmând a fi atins printr-un pachet de activități specifice menite să susțină adaptarea acestora în societatea românească dintr-o perspectiva dinamică, interdisciplinară.      Grupul țintă va avea la dispoziție, pe tot parcursul proiectului, servicii educaționale și de integrare socio-culturală.  ARCA’s club – servicii Cursuri de limbă română Cursuri de limbă engleză pentru adulți și copii Consiliere psihologică Activități non-formale psihoeducative pentru copii Consiliere vocațională        Rezultatele așteptate la finalul acestui proiect, au în vedere îmbunătățirea accesului la educație pentru patru sute de mame și copii din Ucraina, îmbunătățirea nivelului de limbă română și engleză pentru două sute de persoane, integrarea culturală pentru două sute de beneficiari, integrarea pe piața forței de muncă a o sută de adulți și îmbunătățirea traiului cotidian pentru trei sute cincizeci de persoane vulnerabile .        ARCA – Forumul Român pentru Refugiați și Migranți, organizație non-guvernamentală, non-profit, apolitică și independentă activ ce desfășoară activități de sprijinire a persoanelor refugiate și migrante de peste 25 de ani în România susține și implementează proiectul “ARCA ‘s CLUB for Ukrainian mothers and children”. Mai multe detalii puteți afla trimitandu-ne un mail la adresa: office@arca.org.ro.      ARCA mulțumește, pe acesată cale, amabilității sponsorului, Kindernothilfe, de a întinde o mână de ajutor mamelor și copiilor ucrainieni. Fără aportul sporsorului nostru proiectul ar fi fost cu mult îngreunat. 

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Ziua Mondială a Educației la Arca Conviețuim
Migrants Club

Trăim Individual Dar Împreună Conviețuim

Trăim separat dar împreună conviețuim     Trăim separat dar împreună conviețuim. Astăzi pornim o nouă etapă împreună, poate una dintre cele mai importante, cea a învățării. De la “bună” la “mulțumesc”, vom reuși să comunicăm cu bucurie căci “cuvintele sunt vocea inimii”(Confucius).     Mamele din Ucraina, de astăzi, vor avea la dispoziție un curs de limba română, unul de limba engleza, iar copiii dumnealor se pot bucura de activități educationale nonformale alături de specialiști, toate oferite de ARCA, la sediul nostru din Str. Austrului 23, în cadrul proiectului “ARCA’s CLUB for Ukrainian mothers and children” finanțat cu sprijinul Kindernothilfe. Succes tuturor celor implicati!       Activitățile desfășurate fac parte din proiectul nostru “ARCA’s CLUB for Ukrainian mothers and children”. Proiect ce a luat naștere din dorința de a întinde o mână de ajutor refugiaților din Ucraina. Dorim să mulțumim pe această cale fințatorului nostru, KNH, fără ajutorul căruia misiunea noastră ar fi fost cu mult îngreunată. Nu în ultimul rând adresăm calde mulțumiri instituțiilor din București care au susținut cu amabilitate și profesioalism demersul nostru. ARCA supports refugees and migrants You too can get help. Arca is a NGO who offers support in the relationship with the local or government administration Don’t be afraid and don’t be ashamed to ask for help. We are an NGO that helps migrants and refugees since 1998. We can offer you support for a better relationship with institutions in Romania. Regardless of whether we are talking about the central administration or the local administration. In other words don t be afraid to contact us. In addition, we have created a special page for you to give you access to valuable information. We understand that it is difficult for you as a refugee or migrant, even more difficult to find a job, however you must not give up.   Read More

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Ziua Mondială a Educației la Arca
Migrants Club

Ziua Educației Mondiale

Ziua Mondială a Educației la Arca     În fiecare zi întâlnim conceptul ” EDUCAȚIE “, cu înțelesul său profund și complex.     Pentru fiecare dintre noi poate însemna ceva diferit, dar toți știm ce rol important joacă în dezvoltarea personală și socială. Acest proces gradual cântărește atât de mult în viețile noastre, poate ar trebui să-l celebrăm în fiecare zi. De Ziua Mondială a Educației, sărbătorim mai presus de orice, VIAȚA, UNIUNEA și nevoia de a evolua permanent, individual dar și impreună. Noi românii, în ziua de 24 Ianuarie 1918, am primit una dintre cele mai importante lecții, în educația noastră stând la baza îndemnul strămoșilor noștri: ” Unde-i unul nu-i putere La nevoi și la durere, Unde-s doi puterea crește Și dușmanul nu sporește!” Astăzi ne-am întâlnit și am participat la prezentarea activităților clubului “ARCA’s CLUB for Ukrainian mothers and children”, la activitati psiho-educaționale pentru copii și consiliere pentru adulți, creându-ne amintiri frumoase. Cei mici s-au simțit că într-o mare familie Activități intercative alături de beneficiarii proiectului “ARCA’s CLUB for Ukrainian mothers and children”    Astăzi ne-am întâlnit și am participat la prezentarea activităților clubului “ARCA’s CLUB for Ukrainian mothers and children”, la activitati psiho-educaționale pentru copii și consiliere pentru adulți, creându-ne amintiri frumoase. Cei mici s-au simțit că într-o mare familie.    Multumim pe această cale finanțatorului nostru Kindernothilfe care aputu face posibilă demararea proiectului “ARCA’s CLUB for Ukrainian mothers and children”. https://www.arca.org.ro/wp-content/uploads/2023/02/INFO-1-1.mp4

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