Press Release

Bucharest, August 16, 2012

Romania spends more to keep a man in prison for a month than it costs to send a child to preschool for a year. This is one of the messages that Asociatia OvidiuRo delivers through its first SMS campaign launched this week and broadcast on 20 TV channels, radio, print and online publications. Individuals can now help a poor child go to kindergarten by sending one or more SMS’s to 8860.

“In the past, OvidiuRo has relied heavily on the Romanian corporate sector to fund the Fiecare Copil in Gradinita (FCG) program but this year corporate fundraising has become a lot harder,” OvidiuRo cofounder Leslie Hawke explains. “We are reaching out to individuals for the first time to help us meet the shortfall so we can continue supporting all 1400 children in the program.”

Through this award-winning program impoverished children in 12 counties get the chance to learn things which their parents, most of them uneducated, cannot teach them. “Preschool is an essential step for severly impoverished children who don’t get much early intelletual interaction at home. Without quality early education these children are doomed to never catch up with their peers in primary school.  So naturally they drop out before they’ve gained any marketable skills” notes Maria Gheorghiu, cofounder of OvidiuRo.

Through FCG parents receive monthly 50 lei food coupons (“tichete sociale”) as incentives for taking their children to kindergarten every day.  „This small reward for making the effort to get their child to preschool every day makes a huge diference – both for attendance levels AND for the children’s nutritional needs,” points out Hawke.

The campaign encourages individuals to help a poor child go to ”gradinita” by sending one or more SMS’s to 8860.

In the 30-second TV spots  Marcel Iures and Eduard Andreianu (aka CRBL) make the following points:

The human brain develops most in the first five years of life, yet…

Impoverished children are deprived of quality early education and they never catch up in school.

Today’s uneducated children are tomorrow’s unemployed adults, yet

Romania spends more to keep a man in prison for one month than it costs to send a child to preschool for a year.

The two campaigners say they have chosen to support this initiative because:

Marcel Iureș: “I feel sorry for these poor children living in rural areas. I hate to see them get lost”.

CRBL: “Education is the key for the betterment of our society. It’s not the first time I’ve gotten involved in a education campaign”.

Help a poor child go to ”gradinita” campaign has been produced and will be promoted with the generous support of many concerned Romanians:

Special thanks to: Marcel Iures, CRBL; Video & Photography: Daniel Vrăbioiu, Johannes Kruse, Aga Luczakowska, Amarjit Jidhu, Cristina Stanciu; Preproduction: Florin Costache, Simona Cristea, Dorel Melinte, Cătălin Nedelea, Liviu Stanciu, Adela Vrînceanu; Production: Chainsaw, Foarfeca, New Folder, Saatchi&Saatchi, Mihai Marcu, Suzan Suliman, Manuela Tudor, Vlad Turcanu, Dan & Mihaela Vezentan; Postproduction: Andrei Ciubuc, Ştefan Crişan, Sorin Gîscă, Diana Gordon, Oana Manea, Radu Mihaiu, Marina&Mircea Olteanu, Alexandra Petrescu; Promotion: CITV, Carrefour, Cocor Channel, Spectalucar View, ZenithOptimedia

Campaign supported by: Ring.

Media Partners: Acasă TV, Animal Planet, AXN, AXN Crime, AXN Crime, AXN Sci Fi, BeWhere, Bucarest Hepdo, Business Woman, Cațavencii, Dicovery Channel, Eveniment Sibiu, FavoritTV, FrissFM, Good Food, Money Channel, MTV, Music Channel, National Geographic, National Geographic Wild, N24, NaționalTV, Nine O’Clock, Oblique, OTV, PrimaTV, ProCinema, ProTV, Radio Antena Satelor, Radio 3 Net, Radio România Actualități, Radio România Constanța, Radio România Cultural, Radio România Târgu Mureș, Radio Zu, RFI, Ring, Romania Insider, Sette Giorni, SlagerFM,, Tango, The Marketer, TLC, TVR 3, TVR Regionale,

For details or partnerships please contact:

Facebook: Asociatia OvidiuRo