Reality Check Association was founded in 2017 by a group of young Romanian professionals with extensive experience in nonprofit management, business, research and public administration and supports programs and policies that are smart, have impact and are applied effectively.
To ensure full implementation of the Fiecare Copil în Grădiniță law, Reality Check in collaboration with the Ministry of Labor, drafted amendments to make it easier for families to apply for assistance and to require local administrators, social workers, and teachers to fully comply with the law. The legislation was submitted to Parliament on June 18 2019 by Deputy Florin Manole. It received a favorable report from the Senate Labor Committee in October 2019. It passed the Senate in the fall of 2019, was voted in the Chamber of Deputies on April 3rd, 2020 and it was promulgated by President Iohannis on April 16, 2020. The new law (Law 49/2020 for completing and modifying the law of kindergarten coupons), will be effective as of January 1st, 2021, and will help 100,000 impoverished children attend preschool regularly.
1. change the eligibility criteria: from the income of 248 lei (64 USD) per family member per month to all children who live in families that receive the supplementary family allowance (SFA) – this increases the threshold to 530 lei (120 USD) per family member per month.
2. simplify the application process, by completely eliminating the parents’ request to be admitted in the program – if the children live in families that benefit from SFA and are enrolled in preschool, they qualify automatically for the grădiniță coupons.
3. increase the food coupon amount from 50 to 100 lei (from 11 to 22 USD) per child per month.
4. make it mandatory for mayors and preschool principals to organize information and enrollment campaigns for the law, twice a year.
Reality Check continues to work with responsible ministries to finish the secondary legislation and to inform public authorities so that they will be able to apply the new law from 2021.
Reality Check also supports several community development projects, including two projects that were originated by OvidiuRo:
• Ponorâta village, Maramureș county: provides 275 children with a daily warm meal, school supplies, clothes & shoes; food coupons conditional on regular school attendance; house repairs for 20 families; and a public bath and washing facility.
• Castelu village, Constanța county: offers education through sports for 400 children and medical assistance for vulnerable children and families.
More information on Reality Check Association can be found here .