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“Practicing charity will bind us – will bind all people and make them brothers”

Conrad Hilton

Christmas is a time when we ignite the candle of good will in our hearts and we become more aware of the problems of those around us, offering them care and joy. Starting with the idea that everybody deserves to receive joy during the winter holidays, PO „Filocalia”, hoping to bring a smile on as many faces as possible, has initiated between 20 November 2016 and 20 January this year, the charity campaign „Be a Santa for someone”, the 6 edition. The purpose of this event was to help many people in need, socially vulnerable people and to develop the concept „Gift from gift”, reminding those who live with no needs that there are people out there who really need our support. This year we had the longest campaign ever, organized by PO „Filocalia”. We had to change twice the end date of the campaign because of the high interest of different people to support our cause. We have met many people who were ready to involve without expecting anything in return! It is not so hard to do good and for this you don’t need to be a millionaire, the desire and the empathy are the most important triggers. In our campaign many donors have proven that the poverty problem was something they knew and they were eager to contribute. With the help of great people we managed to organize more activities than we have initially planned. Thereby, the beneficiaries of our winter campaign this year were: 700 children, 100 poor families, 60 elderly from the following regions: Costeşti, Ialoveni;  Coșnița, Dubăsari; Congaz, Comrat;  Hârbovăț, Călărași;  Grozești, Nisporeni;  Zgurița, Drochia; Zaim, Căușeni;  Drăgușeni, Strășeni;  Cotiujenii Mari, Șoldănești;  Șoldănești;  Sângera; Chișinău; and Comrat.  After Filocalia have launched this year’s campaign, not only grownups reacted (people who understand life problems), but also children – young volunteers of Filocalia. We are also very pleased about the active involvement of international volunteers in our events. Special thanks for the involvement of Cecilie Ahlburg from Danemark, Fiona Albala and Eva Ferrer from France and Moe Niitsu from Japan.

Together with them we managed to bring the spirit of Christmas and many smiles to our beneficiaries. Thereby, 30 children have participated in a great show and witnessed a great theatre play – „The child from the stars”, at the national Theatre „Luceafarul” from our capital. Another 120 beneficiaries (from Congaz, Comrat., Nisporeni, Grozești and Boarding school no. 5 from Chișinău) have received sweets, toys, school supplies, they also have danced, sang carols and had the opportunity to be actors in a magic winter show,  organized by our volunteers, wearing costumes from children’s favourite fairy tales. Also, a few large families with many children have received food and hygiene packages and every child – a box of candies and toys from generous Santa. And because nothing makes our hears melt like the sincere smile of elderly, who enjoy a warm word and a hug, this year we dind’t forget to visit our old friends – 60 people from Coşniţa village, Dubăsari region, Zgurița village, Drochia region and Soldănești, bringing them products and other goods they asked for.

While Filocalia’s Santa, with the bag full of presents was traveling from one village to another, other teams of volunteers and children from social centres of „Filocalia” („St. Filaret the Merciful” from Costești) were devoting their time to make handmade decorations for the winter fairs that took place in Chisinau: at Hasdeu central library, national network of markets „Linella”, International Exhibition centre „MOLDEXPO” and „ZORILE” Mall. Using the opportunity, we want to thank the representative of the up-mentioned entities for hosting for free our exhibitions and for promoting our campaign. We wish them all the success in 2017 and hope to collaborate with them in the future.

We thank for collaboration and support the following entities: DONARIS VIENNA INSURANCE GROUP, church „St. Nicholas” from Costeşti village, Ialoveni region; Hașdeu library, IM ”Biroul de credite”, „TRANSIMEX” SRL.

This year something made us be more motivated in all we do, and this was the fact that people from diaspora, being at thousand km from our country, have decided to involve a lot in our charity events. Thanking go to the Christian community from Padova, Italia, priest Vasile Corja, wife of the priest – Lia, for the contribution and for selling the handmade decorations made by Filocalia’s children and volunteers in Italy.

Many individuals also got involved in our campaign, people of good faith whom we thank from the bottomof our hearts: Cristina and Bogdan Ciobanu, Corina Erșov, Vadim Buruian, Galina Midoni, Alexei Ursachi, Corneliu Calancea, Igor and Elena Popov, Diana and Mariana Pojoga; Alexei and Elena Moraru, Valeria Rusu. And our volunteers, who, each time make their own contribution depending on their possibilities: cloths, toys, fruits, sweets, but also involvement in all the activities of the campaign. The many smiles, tears of joy and thanking of our beneficiaries made us believe that the campaign “Be a Santa for someone” has a reason to exist.

We can’t help everyone in need, but the campaigns organized by PO „Filocalia” are a good example of the fact that there are more and more people with big hearts, people ready to help and this makes us believe that we are a nation of emphatic people…

PO „Filocalia” wishes all a 2017 full of beautiful events and hopes to see you near to us and our events also in the following year, raising awareness and bringing a bigger impact in our society.