The 8th National Conference of Support Centres for Pregnant Women took place on 2 and 3 October. The event is organised by the ROUA Centres twice a year and this year, for the first time, the conference was organised in a hybrid format. Forty psychologists, social workers, centre coordinators, doctors, teachers, priests and volunteers from 16 counties in Romania and the diaspora participated.

Photo: Gabriel Ispas

„It is a great joy to be able to offer this training and development framework, where specialists and volunteers from different fields can better understand and support the challenges faced by pregnant women and mothers. For those who have been working for many years it is helpful to see the enthusiasm of those who are just starting out, and for those who are now working to open a centre in their community it is helpful to see the experiences and challenges of those who have already been part of the journey. Getting to know others with similar concerns, exchanging experiences and looking for new ways of cooperation and development are the key directions of this event” – Alexandra Nadane, Director of ROUA Centres

Photo: Anca Zamfirescu

During the conference there were presentations on different topics related to pregnancy and motherhood, panels where guests talked about concrete needs and challenges and sessions of interactive discussions. Among the main common needs for cooperation identified at the conference were:
– The need to build a community where centre workers and those who want to get involved in this field can find support, know-how, working tools and training opportunities;
– the need to develop an intervention guide to be used in pregnancy support centres;
– the need to organise more training contexts, e.g. monthly webinars and workshops on different issues.

Photo: Anca Zamfirescu

Here are some of the participants’ impressions:
„We are a group of a few friends just starting out. We want to set up a support centre. For us this conference was very helpful. We learned about setting up, about the challenges that can arise. For those who want to do something, this training matters a lot. It’s years of work, which you provide free of charge to those who come from behind, and it will help a lot, considering that the need for these centres is huge.” – Gabriela Mistreanu, Ploiesti

Teodora Diana Paul, President of Students for Life Bucharest Association. Photo: Anca Zamfirescu

„The conference was professionally organised, with well presented topics by experienced people, from whom I had a lot to learn.” – Ioana

„I was enriched by seeing how many wonderful things are happening in counties around the country for women in vulnerable situations.” – Liliana

„The experiences and examples of those working in this field prove that it is possible, that the fight is not in vain and that we must get involved.” – Cristina

Veronica Caziuc, Office Services Manager ROUA Centers. Photo: Anca Zamfirescu

„I received a great emotional boost to be part of the team that works to support mothers and their children, even when they are very small in their bellies, may they be well” – Teodora

„I’m very glad that I was able to attend this conference. Thank you for the useful information, which helps me in my work” – Viorica Adriana Iancu, coordinator of the Counselling and Support Centre „Doamna Maria Brâncoveanu” of the Archdiocese of Râmnic

Photo: Gabriel Ispas

„We are glad for the opportunity to participate in this event, for the professionalism and open attitude of the presenters and for the richness of soul of the people we had the opportunity to meet. It is a very nice event, which brought with it a wealth of pertinent ideas and information, as well as the opportunity to connect people and organizations that support life and strive to help, with whatever they can do, expectant mothers in difficult situations.” – Paul, Association for Disadvantaged Mothers and Children

Alexandra Nadane, Director of ROUA Centers. Foto: Gabriel Ispas