The pilot project “Roma Entrepreneurship Development Initiative” was implemented by Impulse Europe in Romania and Bulgaria during June 2015 – December 2016. The project funding was provided by the Roma Initiative Office – part of the Open Society Foundations, the Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) and the Impulse Europe.
The main focus of this project was to determine the entrepreneurship potential in Roma communities from Romania and Bulgaria, the development of Roma communities using entrepreneurship. The project aimed at understanding the barriers faced by Roma entrepreneurs in accessing products offered by mainstream financial institutions.
The project was implemented keeping in mind three main components: (1) community outreach and mapping the entrepreneurship potential in Roma communities, (2) technical assistance aimed at improving the outcomes of the loan application process, (3) post-loan technical assistance aimed at supporting the entrepreneurs grow their business using funding.
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Asociatia Roma Entrepreneurship Development was established in August 2016 in Romania. The institution applied for and received financial assistance from the Open Society Foundations, the Roma Initiative Office. The aim of the project was to support the establishment of the NGO, set-up proper governance and leadership structures and develop its strategy. The project was renewed by a 2 year institutional support program.
School on Wheels is a financial literacy program for school children. The project was launched in 2017 by BCR Romania part of the Erste Group and looked at increasing the financial literacy of young people in Romania. The project used a truck converted into a mobile office traveling through the country and stopping in the city centers to engage children and their families across Romania. REDI partnered with BCR and brought the program in several Roma communities in Iasi, Bistrita, Baia Mare and Cluj. This enabled approximately 100 Roma children to set-out a family budget, plan for savings, as well as learn what fixed and variable expenses are. The main message was: don’t spend all of your money at once and try to make some savings. At least fifty more Roma children from Alba will attend financial literacy classes during December. Participating children, families and educators provided positive feedback on the program design, methodology used and the knowledge gained.
For more details please consult their website: http://www.scoaladebani.ro/peroti/despre-proiect/