Asociatia OvidiuRO, together with the UiPath Foundation and the County School Inspectorates from Botoșani, Galați, Olt, and Vaslui have implemented the Every Child Deserves A Story (Fiecare Copil Merita o Poveste) project during the 2021-2022 school year.
This project is a multifaceted approach to early literacy development that expands disadvantaged children’s vocabularies and improves their language skills by enriching the kindergarten and home literacy environment in rural and impoverished urban communities. In the third consecutive year of the project, more than 24,000 illustrated books were given to children from both rural and urban poor areas, as well as to teachers and school units, to be used as teaching materials.
At the same time, this school year, the project was extended to Olt County, where approximately 600 teachers received educational materials, and 4,500 children received books for home.
The teachers enrolled in the project received kits of illustrated books suitable for preschool age, from classic ones to those without text, graphic novels, or comics books, so that the kindergartens have a diversity of materials that contribute to increasing the quality of the education act. Moreover, the teachers also had access to pedagogical guides and suggestions for pre-and post-reading activities, and the children received extra materials so they could continue learning with their parents.
Within the Fiecare Copil Merita o Poveste project, 10 online training sessions focused on literacy were organized for all preschool teachers from the four counties. After the pandemic restrictions were lifted, OvidiuRO representatives also organized face-to-face meetings both for training and evaluating the implementation of the project in each county. More than 120 teachers participated in these offline meetings.
“Since 2019, we have been working with OvidiuRO to facilitate access to quality early education for children from vulnerable communities. The partnership we developed together with OvidiuRO is part of our Early Education Forward program, designed to prevent educational gaps for children from vulnerable communities who, unfortunately, do not have access to quality early education. We are trying to contribute to the reduction of the functional illiteracy rate and give children from disadvantaged backgrounds a better start in life”, said Raluca Negulescu-Balaci, Executive Director, UiPath Foundation.
“After the experience of over 20 years of fieldwork, we know that to reduce the rate of functional illiteracy, we need integrated interventions, on several levels, that’s why we work with preschool teachers, school principals, parents and children alike. A multi-year partnership, as we have with UiPath Foundation, has the extraordinary ability to enable us to work much more concretely with teachers from the most vulnerable communities, and at the same time follow their progress, giving them more resources and support to work with the little ones”, said Maria Gheorghiu, President of the OvidiuRO Association.