By ensuring uninterrupted access to energy, we safeguard every child's right to safety
UNICEF, thanks to the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Republic of Croatia, provided power generators to eight strategic institutions in Moldova.
Chisinau, 17 July 2023: Along with the refugee crisis caused by the war in Ukraine, attacks on energy infrastructure consistently pose a risk of plunging Moldova into "darkness". Hundreds of thousands of Moldovan families, including refugees, risk a lack of access to electricity - a vital resource for their safety. The most vulnerable are children in difficult situations, those with special needs, and those without parental care. Therefore, institutions providing essential protection, health, and care services - such as hospitals, schools, and placement centers - urgently need support to ensure their activity amidst emergencies, especially during the cold season.
The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) continues to work with national authorities to mitigate and combat the effects of crises that directly impact the lives of children and their families. Thanks to the generous and immediate donation of 100,000 euros from the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Republic of Croatia, in cooperation with the UNICEF Office for Croatia, UNICEF Moldova has purchased and delivered power generators to eight strategic institutions in Moldova that serve children and mothers at risk.
The power generators arrived at each institution in July. To be closer to the needs of the beneficiaries, Marija Kapitanović, the Croatian Ambassador to the Republic of Moldova, and Maha Damaj, the UNICEF representative in Moldova, visited the Placement and Rehabilitation Center for Young Children and the" Orfeu" Curative Pedagogy Pilot Complex in Chisinau.
To date, at the center, 158 children up to 12 years old and 18 mothers, including minors, benefit from safe living spaces, comprehensive rehabilitation services, and social assistance. Among the beneficiaries are children with special needs, left without parental care or at risk of abandonment, and mothers who are victims of physical and sexual violence. For these children and mothers, the center is a lifeline. Any power interruption disrupts the institution's activities and has a huge negative impact on their well-being.
"This generator ensures the safety of our team and beneficiaries. Regardless of war or energy crisis, they have the right to be protected and to enjoy food, care, and quality medical assistance. We can provide these services if we have access to energy. Thanks to this equipment, nothing can stop us from supporting those in need. We will have unconditional access to energy," says Gheorghe Turcanu, the director of the Placement and Rehabilitation Center for Young Children.
Marija Kapitanović, the Croatian Ambassador to the Republic of Moldova, visited the main rehabilitation sections of the center, having the opportunity to meet and talk with the mothers and children who enjoy the services, as well as with the specialists.
“I am so pleased that the Croatian donation is used for such a valuable cause. Croatia made a donation worth 100,000 euros in order to help health and educational institutions that care about children and mothers at risk in the Republic of Moldova.
Through this donation, Croatian Government extends its support to Moldova and Moldovan people in managing and overcoming the energy needs in the upcoming winter months by ensuring the uninterrupted activity of institutions responsible for the wellbeing of children and the most vulnerable once.
This financial donation is for the citizens of Moldova. As a Croatian ambassador to Moldova, my mission is, in addition to further developing diplomatic relations between two countries, to get closer to the people of Moldova. By making this donation, Croatia sends a message of solidarity to the Moldovan citizens. That is why we donated power generators to eight health and educational institutions,” says Marija Kapitanović, the Ambassador of the Republic of Croatia to the Republic of Moldova.
”Croatia is today a member of the UN, EU, NATO and other international organizations, but Croatia is also a country that knows very well what it means to go through a difficult period. In the 1990s, Croatia took care of hundreds of thousands refugees, both internally displaced and refugees from the neighboring country, most of them were women and children. Hence, we have a special sensibility for people in need. I would like to thank UNICEF Croatia for its cooperation and UNICEF Moldova for helping us implement such a valuable and immediate donation.”
The mission was completed with a visit to the "Orfeu" Pedagogical and Curative Complex in Chisinau, where 154 children with special needs have access to specialized educational services, extracurricular activities, and therapy. Thanks to a tailored approach and programmes focused on inclusion and culture, these children develop sufficient skills to enjoy all life's resources, actively contributing to the development of the community they belong to. "For us, the "Orfeu" Special Education Complex, is more than just a donation and a tangible resource for our safety in such challenging times. Benefiting from this generator, the 47 team members and 154 children and parents have understood that they are not alone, and there is always a shoulder of support and hope," says Oleg Ababi, the director of the institution.
The "Orfeu" Pedagogical and Curative Complex was founded in 2003 and is managed by the Chisinau Municipality. "We cannot allow the war in Ukraine and the energy crisis to affect the well-being of children and families in Moldova and those who have fled the conflict. These generators have arrived exactly at the right time, as we make concerted efforts to ensure that families in Chisinau, especially children in vulnerable situations, will benefit from uninterrupted access to energy in the cold season and beyond. This donation reaffirms our successful partnership with UNICEF and the constant support of donors, like the Government of the Republic of Croatia, for the Moldovan and Ukrainian children," says Angela Cutasevici, the Deputy Mayor of Chisinau.
The procurement and delivery of the eight power generators to key institutions for children and mothers in need, with the support of the Croatian Government, further underline UNICEF's mission to guarantee children's rights by developing partnerships with authorities and leveraging resources offered by donors for the primary interests of every child.
”By providing these power generators to eight institutions in Moldova that offer essential education, rehabilitation, and medical assistance services to children, including those with special needs or in difficult situations, UNICEF ensures the coverage of energy needs, especially for the upcoming cold season. I am happy and proud that we are able to prepare now, during the summer, for any challenge or surprise that winter might present to us,” says Maha Damaj, the UNICEF Representative in the Republic of Moldova.” Thanks to the support provided by the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Republic of Croatia, we can assure that these institutions will operate regardless of the challenges tied to access to energy, a vital resource for the safety and well-being of children, which must be guaranteed regardless of any crisis or conflict in the region.”
The power generators were delivered to seven health and education institutions in Chisinau and a placement center in Ceadir Lunga, a region in the South of Moldova. To date, these institutions serve over 1800 beneficiaries.
UNICEF Moldova thanks the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Republic of Croatia for the support provided in the context of the energy crisis in Moldova. This support ensures the rights of vulnerable children and mothers to health, education, and protection services in emergencies.