București, 4 iulie 2016 - Asociația OvidiuRo announces the launch of the ‘Fiecare Copil în Grădiniță’ (FCG) Summer Caravan designed to inform parents about Law 248/2015 and register eligible children for gradinita. Law no. 248/2015 encourages poor parents to send their children to gradinita by offering a 50 lei worth food coupons (TSG), if the child attends every day.
The Caravan starts off today in Vaslui and Brașov – two of the 12 counties selected by OvidiuRo based on their poverty rate and number of children at risk of dropping out of school before they complete their secondary education.
After four months of implementation, approximately 65.000 disadvantaged children have been enrolled nationally, out of which 58% attended regularly and received the food coupons between February and June. Many local authorities report that the first effect of the law was an increase in attendance for all the children in gradiniță (not just the ones qualifying for the coupons).
The Caravan’s main objective is to assist the local implementation teams, comprised of teachers, mediators, and social workers, in identifying children aged 3-6 who aren’t yet enrolled in kindergarten and subsequently explaining the program to their parents and `enrolling the children for the 2016 -2017 school year. The Caravan’s activities will include picture book reading-aloud sessions, educational games, and parent counseling about the importance of early education. Thanks to Carrefour Foundation each child who participates will receive a picture book entitled “La Gradinita”.
Leslie Hawke, OvidiuRo cofounder explains that “OvidiuRo is dedicated to promoting reading aloud to young children, by both teachers and parents. In very poor rural communities many of the parents can hardly read themselves – so we choose books that are simple and that tell stories through the pictures that the families can relate to. Our overarching goal now is to promote the good practices that made FCG’s pilot programs so successful.”
At the end of the summer, OvidiuRo will identify communities which it will continue to support with the other critical elements of the original “Fiecare Copil in Gradinita” program which complement the food coupons covered from the state budget. These include school supplies, clothes & shoes, hygiene products and health education, teacher training and active parent involvement.
The ‘Fiecare Copil în Grădiniță’ Caravan has been made possible by The Carrefour Foundation, an OvidiuRo major investor since 2013. For the 2016 – 2017 school year, The Carrefour Foundation will encourage teachers and parents to read aloud to young children.
 Bacău, Botoșani, Brașov, Constanța, Covasna, Dâmbovița, Dolj, Iași, Maramureș, Sibiu, Suceava, Vaslui