Fundatia de Dezvoltare Locala “Speranta”

Fundatia de Dezvoltare Locala “Speranta” (translated: “Hope” Local Development Foundation) is a nongovernmental, non-profit and apolitical organization, founded in 1995 by decision no. 39/8 May 1995 of Neamt Court, at the initiative of a Local Consortium that assured at that time a broad representation of the local community. The initial name was Fundatia de Intrajutorare a Somerilor “Speranța“(translated: “Hope” Foundation for Mutual Aid of the Unemployed) with the purpose of supporting the unemployed and other disadvantaged groups in the area. In 2001, changes were made to the statute of the foundation and the present name was adopted.

The first projects implemented by the foundation were financed by the European Union in Romania through the PAEM Program (Program of Active Employment Measures for the Workforce), stage I and stage II, during the period June 1996 - September 1997. Through the entire activity held so far, with a portfolio of 40 projects in 20 years of activity, has become an important agent of change.

Initially, the geographical scope of Fundatia de Dezvoltare Locala “Speranta” was limited to the town of Tirgu Neamt and neighboring villages. From this point of view, the foundation was and is one of the most prominent NGOs in Neamt County. With the establishment of the Center for Integration and Occupational Therapy for people with disabilities (2005) and the first protected unit from Neamt County (2006) - activities that have developed steadily and withstood despite the financial problems caused by a flawed or inappropriate political and legislative system, the foundation became one of the important landmarks of the social economy at regional and national level.

All projects and actions undertaken, whether economic (commercial) or strictly social in nature, converge to the fulfillment of the foundation’s social objective and ultimately, lead to the vision defined by the organization: An involved, responsible and inclusive community.

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In 2016, on May 8, Fundatia de Dezvoltare Locala “Speranta” celebrated 21 years of uninterrupted activity, in and for the community.

Even though many of the people who founded this organization are not among us anymore - we remind here Mr. Eng. Serafim Lungu, who was president of the foundation for 15 years – SPERANTA survived all the trials and challenges of time.

Today, we can responsibly state that we are a mature organization, known and appreciated both regionally and nationally for the projects undertaken, for the involvement in community issues and for the many long-lasting partnerships established.

Persistent in our mission and philosophy, we have always tried to maintain our optimism, seeking solutions to the problems and needs of our fellows. Devotion, dedication, passion, human solidarity, respect, professionalism in work, trust, involvement - are values not invented by us. We have just proved that they can be applied when you care about your fellow people, the place you live, the nation to which you belong.

And because the results are those that speak, even if we have not received awards, medals or nominations, we still have many reasons to smile thankfully because:

  • We had the chance to conduct the first projects with financing from the European Union since the foundation’s establishment (1995-1997).
  • At the level of the town of TirguNeamt, we are the NGO:

- Which attracted the most money in the community through the projects undertaken: over 1 million euros; - Which created the most work places over the years up till now; - That established new organizations which are currently still active:for example Asociatia Mestesugarilor Nemteanca (translated Nemţeanca Craftsmen Association); - Which (re)qualified most adults - more than 1,200 people so far; - Which implemented the first (pilot) system in the community for reducing CO2 emissions using photo-voltaic technology for public lighting; - Which purchased and planted 2,300 trees in the community; - Which arranged five thematic routes designed to highlight the natural, cultural and historical resources of the area of Neamț Fortress and Mountain Hunters Monument;

  • We are the first organization in the community who founded and developed activities of social economy - our model being given as an example regionally or nationally at various events.
  • In 2006 we established the first protected unit in the Neamt area, which currently has the largest number of disabled persons employed, from all protected units authorized in Neamt county.
  • In 2011 we established the first work integration social enterprise from Neamt area - SC IMPULS ART TN - one of the foundation’sLLC.
  • In 2013 we managed to reach 2nd place in the national competition “Campionatul de bine” with our project: Purtati pe brate! (translated: Carried on arms!). Thanks to the 599 donors and the prize granted by BCR, our beneficiaries’ dream to be transported in human conditions was fulfilled, through a rendered car;
  • In 2015 we founded the second social enterprise in rural area - TAKE3 Association;
  • In 2016 will become the first "green" NGO in the area through the investments made from Norwegian grants: therm-energetic rehabilitation of the building, installation of a photo-voltaic system and a solar panel system;
  • In April 2016 we received the integrated ISO 9001-14001 -18001 certification; and... there will certainly be other reasons to smile or to bring a smile of happiness on the faces of our fellow people.

We thank everyone who had a major role in establishing this foundation, to those who have supported us in better or worse times andto those that give us the strength to continue, to fulfil our dreams and our projects

We thank everybody who honoured us with their Confidence, Support and Involvement.

With consideration, Tirgu Neamt, 31 martie 2016

Elena Cucu Presedinte