A post with all the highlight from the last month or so…keep reading, there is a story about a cute little lamb at the end (that will make you sad)
Peace at Home, Peace in the World
On March 1st, the Gender and Development Committee of Peace Corps Romania along with Fundatia Sensiblu, a Romanian NGO that supports women and children survivors of domestic violence, Biblionet, international organization to develop public libraries, and the United Nations hosted an event with the theme “Peace at Home, Peace in the World”. The exhibition featured art, poetry and essays done by Romanian students throughout the country who had submitted their work for a country wide competition. The competition started in November when the “16 Days Against Gender Violence” is recognized throughout the world. The competition’s aim was to raise the public’s awareness of the the problem associated with domestic violence. Student’s reflected on the violations that victims of domestic violence face, including: sexual, physical, emotional, low self-esteem, and affect on the family. Initiatives like this one should be show cased more often.
On March 1st Romanian celebrate Mărțișor which celebrates the beginning of Spring. On this day women receive a Mărțișor, which is a small jewel or ornament tied to a red and white string and women wear on their blouses for the next 9 days (wearing it for 9 days will bring luck your way). The red and white strings are a representation of unity between contrasts like summer/winter, hot/cold, light/dark…as a person of many contrasts I support this unity. The jewel or ornaments are all different types and some represent the woman’s personality. This is one of my favorite Romanian traditions because it created an overly happy environment everywhere…teachers talked about the different Mărțișor they received, students ran from one teacher to another to give them each a Mărțișor, plus the weather was perfect to celebrate the change of season. I like wearing my Mărțișor because it adds a bit of character to my day.
International Women’s Day
With a little grant from the Gender and Development Committee of PC Romanian we were able to put together a display of important Romanian women to celebrate International Women’s Day (March 8th) . For this project we asked student to select 10 Romanian women who they consider positive leaders. After collecting the biographies, we printed pictures of each woman and created a nice display at both schools. Since we didn’t have a lot of money for the project we had use our creativity when putting this together. Instead of frames, we bought thick, colorful paper to replace expensive frames, students made the display title with gray stock paper (which they decorated), bought styrofoam and black fabric for the setting of a nice solid background. After collecting all of the materials, these are the 10 women we picked (I do recommend you read their full biographies):
Maia Morgenstern: Internationally recognized actress
Ecaterina Teodoroiu: Romanian hero who fought and died in World War I “Forward men, I’m still with you” (*side note, my favorite name, Ecaterina)
Herta Muller: Internationally recognized writer, Nobel Prize winner in literature
Virginia Andreescu Haret: First woman architect
Mariana Nicolescu: Internationally recognized Opera singer
Elena Caragiani Stoenescu: First woman pilot
Ana Aslan: Founder of gerontology
Alexandra Nechita: Painter known as “Petite Picasso”
Smaranda Braescu: First Parachute jumper in the world
Nadia Comaneci: Gymnast, winner of three Olympic gold medals
While working on this project, my partner in crime, Laura said to me “[through this project] I had the chance to find out more thing[about Romanian women] and I’m really proud that i’m a Romanian woman”. Laura is a hard working teacher and I am lucky to work with her on so many different projects. Now every time I walk pass our display, I grow a little taller because I am so proud of the work we did. It also makes me happy when I see people reading the biographies during class breaks. In time, small achievements mount up to be big accomplishments.
Besides the AWESOMENESS of this project, in recognition of International Woman’s Day I received flowers from my students. I received so many flowers that if I wanted I could have opened my own flower shop…okay maybe I’m exaggeration but honestly I received a lot. I love walking around the house and smelling all the different types of flowers I received. And love even more that every room I enter has flowers given by my students.
Andrea had a little lamb
For a very short time, we had a lamb. I came home one day to the sounds of baaaaaaaaaaa, excited, confused and a little intrigued I rushed to the back and saw this little cutie walking around. It came after me, I assumed because it was hungry, but I kinda freaked out so I ran in the house. Then I realized I was such a fool and walked back outside and took these pictures. Unfortunately, the little lamb is no longer with us because she suffered a tragic death…the dog found her. Enough said. She was fun while she was here. So it is true, Andrea HAD a little lamb, little lamb, little lamb. Easter won’t be the same without you.