Be the necessary change! Here is what was implemented in 2015:

Socio-Ecological Initiatives:

  1. “Green Stone” | Team: Irina Tiron, Andriana Sindirinschi - Cahul, Moldova

  2. “EcoPotyag” | Team: Ann Senko, Lilia Tkaciuk, Andrei Myshastyi - Kiev, Ukraine

  3. “Bio Paulownia” | Team: Tatiana Panaguta, Antonela Secureanu - village Chiscareni, Singerei district, Moldova

  4. “ecoestafeta.com” | Team: Evghenii Titarenko, Evghenii Kuzmiciov, Tatiana Zavorotko, Valeria Horyaeva - Sumy, Ukraine

  5. “Urban Garden Chisinau” | Team: Margarita Cerneavschi, Cristian Cucu, Alexandru Barbaroshie - vil. Roshu, Cahul district, and Chisinau, Moldova

  6. “Green Light” | Team: Hanna Arhirova, Natalia Polovenko - Kiev, Ukraine

  7. “Let’s create green!” | Team: Joela Laghi, Catalina Ionascu - village Trusheni, Chisinau municipality, Moldova

  8. “Plant Your Tree” | Team: Valentin Akbyik & Taya Camenscic - Taraclia, Moldova

  9. “Using organic waste in an efficient way” | Team: Constantin Furtuna & Inna Gordeeva - village Roshu, Cahul district, Moldova

  10. “EcoQuest” | Team: Alexandru Donos, Rodica Buga, Tatiana Cataraga, Irina Pompush - Moldova

  11. “Live Water” | Team: Victoria Ursu, Tatiana Diaciuc, Nicolae Morari - village Chiscareni, Singerei district, Moldova

  12. “Paper Collector” | Team: Marin Cimbriciuc, Liubovi Chioresco, Iulea Minciucova - Chisinau, Moldova

  13. “Balance” Documentary | Team: Alexandr Garabajiu, Anastasia Lepilova - Moldova

  14. “Our Green Park” | Team: Svetlana Razmerita - village Gauzeni, Soldanesti district, Moldova

  15. “It’s clean not where it is cleaned up, but where nobody LITTERS!” | Team: Serghei Dolgov, Tatiana Vidova, Irina Chisacova, Oleg Mavrodi - Cahul, Moldova

  16. “Eco-Package” | Team: Ion Cataraga - village Dragushenii Noi, Hincesti district, Moldova

Social Entrepreneurship Initiatives:

  1. “Bike Guide: Tour with tourists in Chisinau and near by it” | Team: Liviu Nemtanu, Ion Mocanu - Chisinau, Moldova

  2. “Vive Soil: Worm Box” | Team: Mihail Cebanu, Ilie Postolachi, Alexandr Nikitin - village Coacaza Rosie, Criuleni district, Moldova

  3. “Atelier 99. First Workshop of the Maker Community in Moldova” | Team: Iurie Nuca, Victor Bujoreanu - Chisinau, Moldova

  4. “No limit. Training Center NO LIMITS” | Team: Natalia Batir - Balti, Moldova

  5. “AskUs: LPA and NGO consulting center. Public Consulting Roundtable” | Team: Marcela Friptu, Diana Golban, Veronica Cazacov, Adrian Bitco - Criuleni district, Moldova

  6. “Torbesc - Traiesc, Iubesc. Iubesc, Torbesc. - Fabric bags designing, testing production process and selling” | Team: Ecaterina Tarus, Veronica Cazacov - Chisinau, Moldova

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Socio-ecological initiatives

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“Green Stone” - movie nights and ecobags for Cahul

Team: Irina Tiron, Andriana Sindirinschi

The “Green Stone” team devised a method that should help with raising awareness of the inhabitants of their hometown, Cahul. The main element of this method was a series of outdoor movie nights on environmental topics, held in order to attract people’s attention to global and local ecological issues. These activities were complemented with a green campaign encouraging people to make a choice between plastic bags and handmade fabric bags; in order to motivate them, the team has sewn some ecobags to use as gifts.

The developments of the project surpassed the team's expectations - the organizational team size grew up to 10 persons, and together they managed to engage about 200 people. Andriana and Irina got lots of positive feedback about their project, and so they think of continuing this initiative in order to build up a tradition for the development of the local community.

Where: Cahul, Moldova

Mentor: Marina Blaja

“EcoTrain” - promoting rational waste management at festivals in Kiev

Team: Ann Senko, Lilia Tkaciuk, Andrei Myshastyi

Concerned about lack of waste management awareness in Kiev, the “EcoTrain” (orig."EcoPotyag") team - Ann, Lilia and Andrei - decided to use a rather unexpected, but also quite an effective approach: bring the idea to various festivals, such as ArtPicnic. The concept was that people could bring empty bottles of all kinds - such a common element of summer events, - as well as used batteries, to the EcoPotyag tent, place them in special containers (offered by Kyyivmiskvtorresursy and Kyyivkomunservis) and get some symbolic gifts (e.g. for 10 bottles you get a notebook made of recycled paper, for 20 empty bottles - a cardboard eco pen).

The activity took place during two ArtPicnic events (15-16.08. and 29-30.08). As a result, the team has managed to inform about a few hundreds of people about the harmfulness of plastic and the need of waste separation. Moreover, they have collected and sent to recycling: 4 kg of caps, 18 kg of glass, 13 kg of aluminum cans, 20 kg (almost 1000 bottles) of plastic and 5 kg of used batteries. The profits will be used for the development of other eco-projects, financing the eco-movement and charity. And of course, the team plans to continue their initiative!

You can find more about the project on EcoPotyag fb page, as well as in media: 1, 2.

Where: Kiev, Ukraine

Mentor: Sofia Sadogurska

“Bio Paulownia” - paulownia trees by Chiscareni youth for Chiscareni youth

Team: Tatiana Panaguta, Antonela Secureanu

Tatiana and Antonela, pupils of the “Nicolae Casso” Lyceum are another two of those active young people from Chiscareni village who have taken part in the activEco program. In 2013, some of their colleagues implemented a fruit tree planting project; in 2014, another one was promoting ecobags; in 2015, a new generation is tackling ecological problems of their locality. As the title of their project  - “Bio Paulownia” - indicates, they have planned to make improvements to the school’s territory by planting a number of Paulownia trees, well-known due to their growth speed, resilience, energetic capacity and the capability to prevent soil erosion.

In order to make this possible, the team has organized an awareness-raising and fundraising event - a movie night at the school, with tickets and popcorn. As a result, they collected 610 MDL (that means, more than 120 people came) and acquainted their fellow students with a movie so loved in activEco circles and almost unknown outside of them - "Home".

A month later, on December 9, 2015, the actual planting event has taken place, involving students from IX and XI grades, as well as their geography professor. Despite the roughness of soil, they managed to plant about 50 seedlings of paulownia - another contribution of Chiscareni youth to the well-being of their environment and community.

To find out more about what Tatiana and Antonela have done, you can visit the blog of their colleague (in Romanian): "School Cinema" and "Planting Paulownia Trees".

Where: village Chiscareni, Singerei district, Moldova

Mentor: Ion Ungureanu

“ecoestafeta.com” - EcoRelayRace for the residents of Sumy and beyond

Team: Evghenii Titarenko & Evghenii Kuzmiciov & Tatiana Zavorotko & Valeria Goryaeva

"Ecoestafeta" (EcoRelayRace) is the furthest ever activEco project: it has been realized on a distance of more than 800 km from Chisinau, in the town of Sumy, Ukraine. However, the number of kilometers doesn’t matter much when you have common problems and common goals.

The main goal of the project is to transform Sumy town into the cleanest locality in Ukraine through supporting municipality in its environmental dialogue with citizens, as well as in organization of educational events, facilitation of exchange of experience between initiative groups in this area and formation of respectful attitude towards environment.  

The essential method consists in creation of a topical website ecoestafeta.com with an interactive map, encouraging active implication in environmental protection (e.g. the participants can film a videoclip showing how they clean up a territory and recycle the collected waste, upload it to the site and pass the challenge to their friends). It is supposed to be a termless international project & research leading to development of a new ecoideology, which is already in progress, reaching hundreds of people in Ukraine and beyond.

More info on ecoestafeta.com and on the project's Youtube channel.

Where: Sumy, Ukraine

“Urban Garden Chisinau” - a public permacultural garden for Chisinau

Team: Margarita Cerneavschi, Cristian Cucu, Alexandru Barbaroshie

The ”Urban Garden Chisinau” project is about initiating a small public garden in Chisinau, based on permaculture techniques. The initial stage of this initiative consisted of finding a suitable spot in the city, getting the authorization and then training volunteers in order to create this garden all together.

The implementation of the project was supported, both in spirit and in practice, by Constantin Furtuna (a permaculturist from Roshu village, Cahul), Mariana Seremet (Urban and landscape designer), Ana Iftimie (Garden and landscape designer), Association for Sustainable Entrepreneurship (Iasi), NGO "SOS Autism" and Seed It Forward (a volunteer afforestation initiative).

You can visit the young garden in Chisinau, 191 Grenoble street, in the yard of “The Resource and rehabilitation centre for children with autism”. Right now it includes trees, shrubs, aromatic plants, medicinal plants, and flowers, providing an example of the potential urban places have. 

More photos from the event can be found here.

Where: vil. Roshu, Cahul district, and Chisinau, Moldova

“Green Light” - nonformal ecological education for sick children in Kiev

Team: Hanna Arhirova, Natalia Polovenko

“Green Light” is another project from Ukraine, combining education (light) in the field of ecology (green). Its team consisted of students, who were themselves in the process of learning and quite interested in the opportunity to work on alternative and nonformal methods of education, which would motivate children to learn and explore. Besides, they wanted to bring this model to orphanages and hospitals, especially the oncological ones, in order to brighten the experiences of kids being there.

Despite the difficulties of arranging such things with the hospitals, the team succeeded - and on the 25th of September organized a creative session with a dozen of children from "Ohmadet" hospital, Kiev. The meeting revolved around the topic of eco-bags - discussing the advantages of them in comparison to the plastic ones, watching videos, decorating personal eco-bags. Some of the children couldn't leave their wards, but still got involved in the process. As a result, each child got his or her own decorated fabric bag. Many of them were happy to use it as a gift for their parents or grandparents.

The project was supported by volunteers from a charity foundation "Tabletochki", which also offered to support the project financially in the future, so that it can be transformed in regular art-therapy sessions.

The team confesses that it's not at all easy to work in the hospital conditions, realizing that there are things you cannot change, or cannot change immediately. However, they do believe in the rightness of what they did and plan to do - because the happiness of children outweights it all.

You can find more about this project here.

Where: Kiev, Ukraine

Mentor: Valeria Șvarț-Gröger

“Hai sā creām verde!” - through creativity to ecology

Team: Joela Laghi, Catalina Ionascu

Based on the idea that no one better than young people can spread ideas to make this world healthier and the idea that art and creativity has always more power of persuasion than thousands of words, the “Let’s create green!” team has set itself the goal to improve children’s creativity and capacity, giving inspiration through lessons with smart games and activities, helping them to make little but crucial changes in their lives and environments.

Due to various challenges, including the language barrier, the project was smaller than planned, but it happened nonetheless – as an environmental session with a few dozens of teenagers in a rural school. The session included:

- A brainstorm about some topic words like energy, consumerism, transport, recycling, etc;

- The “product of the year” game, where the groups had to choose between chocolate spread, tea, coffee, a brand dress, a cellphone and a can of meat;

- A presentation about the water and ecology footprint: how this can be calculated from nations, families, individuals and products;

- A discussion about the possibilities to be active and creative - making a reportage about ecological awareness in the neighbourhood, producing a video promoting ecological lifestyle, creating something useful from garbage (i.e. a shopping bag from old umbrella's fabric).

The result of all of that was seeding curiosity and a little more awareness about ecological themes, and inciting teenagers to think about creative actions in this direction.

Where: village Trusheni, Chisinau municipality, Moldova

Mentor: Gabriela Isac

“Plant Your Tree” - greening school territory in Taraclia

Team: Valentin Akbyik, Taya Camenscic

Valentin and Taya have been dreaming of changing something in their hometown, Taraclia, for a long time. With the help of the activEco program, they have finally got the chance and impulse of doing something real there. To do that, they have been working on an afforestation project “Plant Your Tree”, which would allow each of the volunteers to mark his/her tree and follow its growth.

The difficulties in collaboration with the local public authorities, as well as the distance between Chisinau, where both of the team members were spending most of their time, and Taraclia, resulted in a shift in the scale and form of the project - but not in the main idea: making the town greener.

As a result, the project did take place on December 6, 2015, on the grounds of the Lyceum "I.Vazov" from Taraclia. It was supported by the alumnae of the volunteering program "Salut, Taraclia", and has involved 16 local (students from 10th grade, a Peace Corps volunteer and some school staff) and one visiting volunteer. Altogether, they have planted 8 species of perennial flowers (47 pieces), 14 species of bushes (35 pieces) and 6 species of trees (29 pieces - catalpa, thuja, bastard acacia, pine etc.).

That has been their gift to the school where they have studied - and also to the future generations of students who would be studying here and could (and should!) get inspired to bring more positive changes into their community.

To see more photos from the event, you can visit Taya's blog.

Where: Taraclia, Moldova

“Utilizarea deşeurilor organice eficient” - turning organic waste into garden advantage in vil. Roshu

Team: Constantin Furtuna, Inna Gordeeva

The “Using organic waste in an efficient way” project was meant to reduce the amount of trash around the Roshu village, Cahul, as well as on rural roads, through promoting the use of organic waste, which - if people ceased to burn or scatter it - could be very useful in their gardens.

To tackle this problem, the team has created a small video that can be found on the project's website, www.gunoiutil.com, and used it, together with discussions and some supporting gifts, to change local people's opinion and behaviour towards organic waste. A number of families got two waste buckets each, so that they could separate their biodegradable waste from the non-degradable one. Afterwards, they could use the former for creation of a composting pile and, consequently, transform the existing "problem" of organic waste into a garden advantage.

This way, Inna and Constantin intended to educate and reeducate people around them by setting more positive examples, so that everyone, including themselves, can live in a clean future.

Where: village Roshu, Cahul district, Moldova

“EcoQuest” - an interactive game for raising environmental awareness

Team: Alexandru Donos, Rodica Buga, Tatiana Cataraga, Irina Pompush

The authors of the “EcoQuest” project were concerned about the lack of interest in the environment, the existence of stereotypes (ecology = recycling and clean-ups) that prevent many people from revealing their skills in active participation and motivation of others to defend our environment. The solution proposed by them was looking for new methods that would change the attitude towards this issue.

As a result, they developed the idea of an entertaining and educational activity - "EcoQuest" group game, involving people of different gender, age, nationality, etc., which would promote environmental attitude and understanding, develop good practices of interpersonal exchange and impart the desire to change things.

The "EcoQuest" game, a few hours in length, contains multiple activities: a lot of movement, acquiring, applying and sharing knowledge and experience from various fields (ecology, biology, geography, mapping, psychology, art, etc.), individual consultations, demonstrations.

The project was launched at the Art-Labyrinth Summer Festival (03-05.07.2015), and, encouraged by the great success it had there, will probably continue at other festivals and summer camps.

Mentor: Maria Popova

“Live Water” - cleaning the banks of the rivers Chiscari and Ciuluc

Team: Victoria Ursu, Tatiana Diaciuc, Nicolae Morari

Being representatives of the young generation, Victoria, Tatiana and Nicolae are personally interested in ensuring a healthy and prosperous future. Their project, “Live Water”, was supposed to tackle at least one of the aspects of this future - improving the aesthetic and ecological state of the rivers in Chiscareni commune.

To do that, the team combined theoretical activities (an informational seminar on the topic of water pollution) with practical ones - cleaning up the rivers of Chiscari and Ciuluc. They have managed to get the support of the local public authorities, lyceum "N. Casso" and active citizens of the localty. As a result, about 50 people got informed about the consequences the simple fact of throwing garbage in inappropriate places leads to - and involved into amending the situation.

The team is very happy with the results - they have got the process moving, - and plans to bring this initiative to the neighbouring villages as well, because the water (as well as its pollution) does not recognize borders.

Where: village Chiscareni, Singerei district, Moldova

Mentor: Victoria Coroban

“Paper Collector” - introducing paper waste collection in the universities of Chisinau

Team: Marin Cimbriciuc, Liubovi Chioresco, Iulea Minciucova

Paper is one of the most wasted products in all the spheres of human activity. Its recycling would allow us to reduce air pollution by 45%, water pollution - by 75%, consumption of electricity - by 45% and, most essentially, use of primary wood. Recycling one ton of paper means 17 trees can live. Taking all this into account, “Paper Collector” project intends to convince the society that each of us can make a real contribution to improving the state of environment.

The target group of the project consists of students and professors of Moldova State University of Medicine and Pharmacy (USMF), Moldova State University (USM) and Technical University of Moldova (UTM), about 20,000 as a whole, and interested public. To involve them all, three boxes for collecting the waste paper will be manufactured and installed in each of the abovementioned universities; thematic courses about the consequences of deforestation and paper recycling as one of the ways to stop this process will be designed and held. The project will be supported by various environmental specialists and promoted on different platforms, in order to raise awareness on this theme and awaken the civic spirit.

Where: Chisinau, Moldova

Mentor: Olga Disli

"Balance" Documentary - a film promoting ecological lifestyle in Moldova

Team: Alexandr Garabajiu, Anastasia Lepilova

Alexandr and Anastasia - authors of the project "Balance" Documentary - get moral satisfaction when they feel that they do something useful for other people and for the surrounding world. By the help of their project, they want to influence people’s mentality so that they change their lifestyle in the favor of ecology and sustainability; to improve the state of environment in our country and to show that there are alternative solutions for a full life.

To do this, they were working on a film for all ages, which will present examples of sustainable development that already exist in Moldova - organic agriculture, renewable energy, conscious consumption, etc., and, of course, examples of people that already live this way. The couple has conducted interviews with various specialists in the fields of biodiversity conservation, urban ecology, ecological construction, waste management, health - and explored as many unique sites of our country as possible: Orheiul Vechi, Saharna, Tipova, Codrii, Plaiul Fagului, Eco-Village, etc. They also visited COP 21 meeting in Paris in order to get a more global perspective.

At the moment the filmed materials are in the process of editing. The team plans to translate it into Russian, Romanian, English, Spanish, French, German and Chinese - and distribute it for free.

To find out more about the project, visit its Facebook page: Balance Documentary.

Where: Moldova

Mentor: Sorin Opinca

"Our green park" - restoring the public park in village Gauzeni

Team: Svetlana Razmerita

Author of the “Our Green Park” project, Svetlana, wishes to educate, both in youth and adults, love for nature and to act against the indifference of those who use to just destroy or think that everything should be done by somebody else. In the framework of the activEco programme, this wish is to be realized through improving the state of the local park, its transformation from a neglected territory into a real recreation one, flourishing under the protection of local people.

The main activities of the project are to organize a meeting with the local public authorities; to distribute the information and the plan among the residents during a community meeting; to train a group of volunteers and involve them in fencing in the park’s territory (in order to prevent entrance of poultry), planting flowers and trees, installing benches and trash bins, as well as creation of various attractions for children, such as intricate stumps, logs and other natural elements.

The aim of the project is to motivate and attract into the volunteering activities as many people as possible in order for them to realize the benefits of creative activity not only for the locality and other people, but also for themselves.

Where: village Gauzeni, Soldanesti district, Moldova

“Чисто не там, где убирают, а там где не СОРЯТ!” - responsibilization of Cahul residents towards waste in inappropriate places

Team: Serghei Dolgov, Tatiana Vidova, Irina Chisacova, Oleg Mavrodi

According to the project team of “It’s clean not where it is cleaned up, but where nobody LITTERS!”, one of the main problems of the cities and villages in the warm season is the littering of the adjacent green zones due to picnics and other forms of people’s “recreation”. So, as the cleanliness of a locality reflects the people who live there, what is needed is to reduce the pollution of these territories and deprive people of the excuses for their ignorance and irresponsibility.

Among the project activities, intended for tackling this issue, were: exploring the green areas adjacent to the Cahul city and popular among the residents; organizing a round table with the representatives of local authorities and NGOs; training activists and volunteers; preparation and distribution of information materials; cleaning up the territories; installation of trash bins and information boards; arranging a press-conference with everyone who participated and contributed to realization of the project.

Where: Cahul, Moldova

Mentor: Petru Vinari

“Eco-Package” - Eco-friendly package for ecological dried plums

Team: Ion Cataraga

Ion has a business of producing and delivering prunes stuffed with nuts, a natural and eco product from his garden. In the framework of the activEco 2015 programme, he wanted to unite personal interests with public ones, and learn more information about healthy food to make his product better, as well as to provide people with access to a valuable information that they can’t access normally, because of the language barrier. Initially he has planned to work on the “Video Health” project, translating videos about healthy food into Romanian language. However, during the project development period he has realized that he has more motivation to work in the domain of eco-friendly packaging for products, and so the project ”Eco-Package” was born. With his products and eco-friendly paper packages Ion has participated in IarmarEco, presenting them to the larger audience, customers and potential investors.

Where: village Dragushenii Noi, Hincesti district, Moldova

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Social Entrepreneurship Initiatives

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“Bike Guide: Tour with tourists in Chisinau and near by it”

Team: Liviu Nemtanu, Ion Mocanu

The “Bike Guide” team is passionate about tourism, ecological transport and qualitative communication. They want to use the bicycles to show the tourists from all over the world the beauty of our country and, at the same time, stimulate authentic interactions with foreigners. As a result, Liviu and Ion want to explore our country, develop public speaking skills, extend personal networks and gain experience in business and tourism industry.

To explore the consistency and various aspects of this idea, they’ve developed a first-step project called “Tour with tourists in Chisinau and near by it”, which included launching the initiative and trying out many things that would be relevant for its future - elaborating itineraries for the tours, printing special T-shirts, renting bicycles, promoting the project on FB page and in various clubs, organizations, travel agencies, etc.

The main event has taken place on August 22, 2015 and, starting from the Velopoint bike renting spot, guided 15 participants (tourists and friends of the team) through six historical and cultural locations in Chisinau and its vicinity, such as the Water Tower, the Mazarache Church, the Pushkin House Museum, the Circus, etc.

Ion and Liviu, as well as their further team members, Sofia Copacinschi and Alexandru Faina, have got lots of positive feedback. So they are extremely enthusiastic about their initiative, and looking forward to the Diamond Challenge Competition of 2016, where they can bring it to a higher level.

More about this project can be found on its Facebook page: Bike Guide Chisinau.

Where: Chisinau, Moldova

Mentor: Alexandr Lozinschi

“Vive Soil: Worm Box” - vermicompost production and permaculture promotion

Team: Mihail Cebanu, Ilie Postolachi, Alexandr Nikitin

This team of young enthusiasts was frustrated about how farmers in Moldova use agricultural land, as we have so many possibilities to grow some of the most delicious organic production in Europe, but because of the lack of information, farmers continue to use chemical fertilizers and intensive growing, which harms the soil. So, their overall goal is to decrease usage of chemical fertilizers that pollute soil through producing and spreading organic fertilizer to grow healthy food, as well as creating a farmer society that favors ecotechnology.

To achieve that, they have developed a big entrepreneurial initiative called “Vive Soil”, based on vermiculture and permaculture. However, their first step, happening in the frames of the activEco program, was the “Worm Box”, supposed to lay down the foundations for production of vermicompost in Moldova and promotion of this technique among farmers.

The Worm Box was a small storage for vermicompost production, located in the village of Coacaza Rosie, Criuleni district. Over the course of summer, it produced about 80 kilos of vermicompost – a wonderful fertilizer for organic farming. It has been tested in collaboration with “Gradina Urbană Chişinau”, in exchange of the permacultural land plot to apply this product. The project has also been supported by “Hope and Health”, “Fix Era”, “Pomul Vieţii”.

Over the course of project implementation, the team has realized that many more people are unaware about the problems of our soil and possibilities to improve the situation. So they definitely plan to expand the volume of vermicompost production and work on permaculture gardening – all with the scope to involve and educate more people, and take care of our organic waste, soil and health together.

To learn what the initiative has grown into in 2016, please visit the Bunasol Fb page.

Mentor: Bhavesh Patel

“Atelier 99. First Workshop of the Maker Community in Moldova”

Team: Iurie Nuca, Victor Bujoreanu

The “Atelier 99” team is worried about overconsumption of natural resources and lack of practical technical education in Moldova, as we wouldn’t need to buy things that we use a few times per year if we could have access to them in one single place, and we wouldn’t need to throw away our old electronics when we could give it a new life. At the same time, working together in one place would build strong and trustworthy relations between members of our society. 

As a solution to these problems, the team proposed itself to create a Maker Community, which would offer a place for tech enthusiasts from diverse fields to implement their projects and serve as an incubator for hardware startups in Moldova. Besides, “Atelier 99” would be collecting old electronics and giving it a second life through using their details as materials for new projects. 

As a first step towards this great vision, Iurie and Victor organized an event in the yard of the National library of the Republic of Moldova, collecting tools and old equipment, and then using some of it in order to create various useful objects such as a cup heater, a laptop cooler and a lamp – together with the volunteers. As a result, about 25 people got involved and lots of useful electronic stuff and instruments was gathered, which is going to serve as a base for the future FabLab.

On the way of project implementation the team has also gone through the training of the ClimateLaunchpad cleantech business ideas development program and competition. In 2016, they registered as an NGO, have organized a series Makers Moldova meetups and are establishing a space to host the first Maker Community in Moldova.

More information about the Atelier 99 can be found on its Facebook page Atelier 99 / FabLab Moldova, or in media

Where: Chisinau, Moldova

Mentor: Jeff Liu

“No limit. Training Center NO LIMITS” - improving the communication among people through interactive and orignial trainings

Team: Natalia Batir

It is hard not to notice that nowadays electronic communication takes an increasing amount of personal time, especially for children and youth, who cannot imagine their daily life without communication gadgets. As a result, people actually spend less and less time with each other.

Natalia’s motivation to change something, namely, to renew the interaction between people, gave her the idea to open a new training center "NO LIMITS" for children, youth and adults, which would provide training courses in psychology, body language, environmental education, music and oratory. Special attention would be paid to the facilitation of an interactive dialogue between the participants, as well as the development of innovative topics that have not yet made an appearance in other trainings and courses. Finally, profits from the trainings would be used to organize interactive games and learning sessions for children from disadvantaged families.

Until this beautiful vision comes true, the activEco program has supported Natalia in organization, in partnership with JSC "Angelus Balti" and “AppleBeauty”, of her first training on the topic of “Nutrition and Healthy Lifestyle”. The event has taken place on October 14, 2015 in Hotel “Basarabia”, Balti town, with a professional dietitian as a trainer. The participants were very interested in the topic, as well as in the new possibilities. As to the organizer herself, Natalia thinks that she would like to develop further in this direction, because it really might be her vocation – to organize and to facilitate such learning events.

Where: Balti, Moldova

Mentor: Valeria Șvarț-Gröger

“AskUs: LPA and NGO consulting center. Public Consulting Roundtable” - raising the fundraising capacities of rural mayors

Team: Marcela Friptu, Diana Golban, Veronica Cazacov, Adrian Bitco

The “AskUs” team came to the conclusion that the lack of local development despite the variety of grants available comes from the limited capacity to use them. Therefore, they decided to offer consultancy services for project proposals writing, accountancy, project management and fundraising to local public administrations and nongovernmental organizations from Moldova. All this possibilities and information will be placed on an online platform, providing access to the concentrated and well structured information for those who need it. Besides, the future company “AskUs” is to be operated with the involvement of people with special needs - about 60% of the employees.

In 2015, while in the activEco framework, the primary goal was to arrange a public consulting roundtable with a number of district council representatives and village mayors; and provide consultancy for writing a project proposal and identifying funding for a selected mayoralty. These actions were supposed to help the participants identify the real problems that local authorities and NGOs are facing in this domain and analyze the level of their knowledge in order to perform services tailored to the real needs of current and future beneficiaries.

The roundtable took place on August 25, 2015, with mayors and other local administration representatives from Criuleni district. It has been attended by 19 mayors out of 25, which is quite a good indicator, taking into account the level of busyness of our mayors, as well as occurring lack of interest regarding self-improvement. The meeting resulted in a very productive discussion concerning fundraising, grant project writing, project management and local problems.

After a careful analysis of the roundtable results and questionnaires, the project team has selected the Slobozia-Dusca village, in need of creation of a local waste disposal system, for consultation in project proposal writing. In that, the team was supported by the NGO “Mişc Lumea”.

The team is very happy with their results – seeing that they are “just some young people”, and plans to realize similar activities in the near future. They are thinking about writing a project and receiving enough funds to realize similar meeting with all Moldavian districts, contributing to a durable positive impact on sustainable development of our society, especially in rural areas.

Where: Criuleni, Moldova

“Torbesc - Traiesc, Iubesc. Iubesc, Torbesc. - Fabric bags designing, testing production process and selling”

Team: Ecaterina Tarus, Veronica Cazacov

The “Torbesc” team seems to have decided to use the possibilities of the activEco program to the maximum, ensuring that everyone benefits. For Moldova, they are working on reduction of plastic bags usage, giving a second life to old unneeded fabric and conveying to the fellow citizens the spirit of responsibility and awareness about the impact of our everyday routine on environment, climate, health and our future as human species. For people with disabilities, they will be creating work places in their future company. For activEco and EcoVisio, they have tested an income generating activity for the organization to assure its sustainability and ability to lead various projects for empowering young generation. And as to the team members themselves, Ecaterina and Veronica have been developing their capacity in project management and social entrepreneurship, to gain experience and enlarge their network.

This is a stunning, but feasible vision, and to realize it, the team has needed to prepare the ground. That means – collecting material to sew the bags (both new fabric and also old clothes from family, friends, colleagues and visitors of events such as IarmarEco), designing and creating prototypes, facilitating an informational campaign (TV – Jurnal.TV, websites – Emoda, newspapers, Facebook page - Torbesc, events such as Recycled Decorative Accessories exposition), etc. The project’s path has included:

- participation in the ClimateLaunchpad cleantech business ideas competition; supplying the said competition with freshly sewn ecobags as gifts for the participants;

- participation in various festivals and organization of workshops;

- support of the Seed It Forward initiative (gifts for the sponsors);

- being filmed as an example of sustainable possibilities in Moldova for the “Balance” Documentary (another activEco 2015 project);

- and, in particular, supplying IarmarEco 2015 with bags, “recycled” and “new”, for gifts and for sale. It was quite a bit of a challenge, creating several hundreds of ecobags in a little amount of time, but Torbesc team has succeeded. Moreover, meanwhile they managed to provide almost all of their friends with personalized ecobags as well!

All these first steps are needed to test the feasibility of the idea, to inform and sensitize people about the benefits of fabric bags usage, to get more information about the manufacturing process, as well as about the fabric bag market in Moldova… and, on the way, to form a strong and reliable team and acquire needed experience for the development of the BIG IDEA.

Mentor: Steven Mantani