2020 brought radical changes in everyone’s lives – but especially for the vulnerable persons, exposed to the pandemic’s risks. Due to the support of Profi Rom Food, the United Way Romania Foundation has helped 430 children and youths coming from disadvantaged families to continue education in 2020. All the required resources they needed have been provided accordingly.

The financial aid provided by Profi Rom Food enabled the children in the ‘STOP poverty, START education!’ programme of United Way Romania to participate at face to face and online courses. They received food, sanitary products, protection masks, disinfectants, medicines, and emotional support.

Educators were also helped with the new teaching circumstances.

One of the major challenges of the year 2020 was the continuous adaptation of activities undertaken by the socio-educational centres to the epidemiologic context. In pandemic conditions, United Way Romania offered important assistance to children, youths and their families. Therefore, children and young people continuously benefited of support concerning the achievement of curricular tasks. They had access to educational and recreational activities in social and/or online centres, as well as a hot meal, school supplies and materials, IT equipment, clothing, and food packages for them and their families. In addition, 417 parents benefited of counselling and support, 293 volunteers have been involved in the project and 140 teachers and specialists have participated at webinars dedicated to the use of technology, to first aid courses and assistance in emotion management during the pandemic, both for adults and for helping children.

In the last trimester of the year, the development of physical activities was possible in the localities where the case number incidence was low. They were performed in centres, in compliance with all legal regulations and in safe conditions for youths, children and specialists.

Profi Rom Food is a strategic partner of United Way Romania Foundation. The retailer’s collaboration with the organisation enjoys a five years tradition. Profi’s financial aid is directed towards ‘STOP poverty, START education!’, one of the main education projects of United Way Romania, implemented in Bucharest, Timiș and Cluj. The programme prevents school abandonment in the poor urban and rural communities, where the daily struggle to ensure the necessary resources for surviving are concentrated on the child’s needs. Parents, teachers, volunteers, and local non-governmental organisations are working together for solving the school abandonment problem. This is not a child’s issue but the issue of the entire community.

‘2020 revealed to us how important it is to stay united, to adapt to the conditions imposed by the pandemic and to help the ones who really are in need of support. Once again, our strategic partner Profi Rom Food stood beside us and helped the vulnerable communities to face this difficult period’, says Adriana Dobrea, Executive Director at United Way Romania.

‘I consider it our duty to look after the communities around Profi stores and to constantly intervene where we can provide any support. The partnership with United Way assures us that our support is well directed where it is mostly needed’, stated Pawel Musial, CEO of Profi store network.