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Parents Conference - Third edition Mamaia 2014

Date of implementation: June 29 -July 4, 2014

Location: Mamaia resort

Moderator: Mrs. Aura Vatamaniuc

Guests: Dr. Costel Ghica, D-l Florin Vasiliu, Heater Dyce (England), Pastor Stig (Sweden), Avasiloai Liviu, Maine Olofsson (Sweden), Carita Hammarstrom (Sweden) and Hans family, Solan and Albertina (Sweden).

Participants: 220 persons:

  • 130 parents of children who benefit from the services offered in the day centers of the 3 counties: Iasi, Vaslui and Botosani, together with parents and children from Moldova from the Association of supporting children with special needs.
  • 25 specialists
  • 20 foreign guests and collaborators


Conferinta Mamaia 2014

This year, Star of Hope Romania Foundation organized the third edition of the Parents Conference. With the support of our sponsors: Star of Hope International Sweden, Ulriksbergskyrkan in Vaxjo, Heather Dyce from England and sponsors from Romania. We were able to cover the costs of the conference with their support. The location was a very special one: the Black Sea. A large number of children and their parents have seen the sea for the first time. Some of them said that their mouths literally dropped when they saw the sea. "Good Lord how beautiful is the sea!" exclaimed one of the parents. The parents were highly impressed by the whole atmosphere of the conference, by the testimonies presented and by the special people who have sent messages of moral and spiritual encouragement throughout the program. The words that best define the entire conference are: rest, encouragement, strength, enthusiasm.

Day I

The opening of the conference program was made by Mrs. Aura Vatamaniuc, CEO of Star of Hope Foundation Romania, who welcomed all the parents. She also presented the conference agenda and the guests.

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Aurora Vatamaniuc, Star of Hope Romania President
Dr. Costel Ghica

Dr. Costel Ghica followed, who used the Parable of the Sower as a central theme in the message for parents. Everything that will be spoken at the conference will be caught, "translated" and kept by the heart of every participant. The "Earth" of each participant's heart will bear or not depending on its quality.

Day II

The whole team and the collaborators of the Star of Hope Romania Foundation were presented in the first part of the meeting. Also, the guests from Sweden were presented.

Conferinta Mamaia 2014 Conferinta Mamaia 2014
Sweden Team SOH
Romania Team

Last year, in the second edition of the Parents Conference, Hans and Solan spoke about their daughter, Albertina. Albertina can not see and is diagnosed with cerebral palsy. This year, Albertina, aged 27 years, wanted to know the parents from Romania who have children with special needs. Albertina prepared a video that showed her activities during a week. She talked about the fact that she now lives separately from her parents in an apartment, and is constantly helped by her personal assistant. She encouraged the parents of children with special needs to give them the space and opportunity to grow as much in order to acquire autonomy (where appropriate and possible).

Conferinta Mamaia 2014

Thus they can lead a life as close to normal, closer to the cultural values in which each of them lives. This can help increase self-esteem and avoid total dependence on parents. Another advantage of children acquiring autonomy is that parents can prevent overcharging and physical exhaustion as they get older (parents and children).


The third day began with the fathers meeting. Until this day meetings were held with both parents, but beginning with this day, the program includes meetings for fathers and mothers, organized separately.

Conferinta Mamaia 2014

The main subject of the fathers meeting was "How can I be sure of my faith?". Pastor Stig presented the message and encouraged the fathers to ask questions at the wnd of the presentation. The opening message was presented by the moderator of the meeting, Mr. Adi Vatamaniuc. Also, the results of the Alpha Course in the SOH centers were presented.

During the meeting with the mothers, the main message was presented by Mrs. Maine Oloffson who spoke to them about the pillars of spiritual faith: one Lord, one faith, one baptism and one God. The analogy used by Mrs. Maine was the house built on a solid foundation. Mrs. Carita and Solan talked about their lives and the way that they managed to get over difficulties with God.

Conferinta Mamaia 2014

Mr. Dan Lungu prepared a surprise for the parents and invited them to watch the film that is named after the book he wrote, called "I'm a communist old lady." Parents were pleasantly impressed after watching the movie, the way in which Mr. Dan Lungu presented the life of a character (whom many persons can identify with) living in the communist period. The French version of the book was twice nominated for the Jean Monnet European prize, France, 2008, and the Polish version was nominated for the "Angelus" Central European literature prize in 2011.

Day IV

Conferinta Mamaia 2014
Heather Dyce

The fathers meeting was chaired by Mr. Costel Ghica. There was a brief recap of the previous meeting at the beginning. The main message was presented by Pastor Stig, focused on the importance of the Church. At the end of his presentation, he received many questions about the church that he leads, about its members, about how he preaches and if there are rituals in the church.

The mothers meeting had as the central message the message of Mrs. Heather. She talked about the power of forgiveness, about her life experiences and relationship with God.

Day V

It was the closing day of the Parents Conference. Parents had the opportunity to share impressions gathered during the whole period of the conference.

  • "I would like to meet such wonderful people in my everyday life, at home. Thank you very much for the invitation. "( Miluţa Leonte - Iaşi)
  • "The presence of special people who have shared their hardships and helped us to understand ours was very important. Now we look at life with new eyes. "
  • "I am glad that this year I had the chance to be with you, along with those who gave me strength and courage to get over the "large"difficulties I went through in the beginning. But now these weights are much smaller, since I have the support of those from Star of Hope. Everything I heard at the conference strengthened me. "(Podlesnaia Svetlana - Republic of Moldova)
  • "Through the messages of the guests of this conference I understood that we have to be good and help each other. Thank you for everything you've done for us."
  • "All those who shared their lives, everyone who sang with us, everyone who prayed with us, they were all great."
  • "For us it was an honor to know Albertina and her family. All our gratitude to the sponsors and organizers, who are great friends and trusted. "(Dăncinescu family - Iaşi)
  • "I really appreciate Albertina's family. They are some powerful parents with wonderful souls. They traveled a great distance to be at this conference, to tell us their testimony and give us their example. Albertina is a strong girl. I will always pray for this family."(Prisacariu family - Iaşi)
  • "We're going home with beautiful impressions, rested, with power to work and greater faith in God."
  • "After the last year conference, after all that had happened there, the relationships in our family changed a lot. We, as parents, have become more aware of one another, better, and we pay more attention to our child. Relationships between us have become more harmonious. But the biggest change has occurred since we started the Alpha course."(Robu family - Republic of Moldova)
  • "I want to thank you because you have provided such a special program, rich in encouraging examples from real life. I really liked the example of Albertina and frankly, I was astonished. I never imagined what difficulties these people go through and how they overcome all the trials of life. What strong faith... Oh, if only I had just a fraction of their faith! But the most amazing fact was that they, the ones who always need help, are ready to help others. Wonderful!"
Conferinta Mamaia 2014
Mamaia 2014


We thank our sponsors for all their support in organizing the conference!


Report made by:
Maria Apreutesei - social assistant
Aurora Vatamaniuc - CEO

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