The 'Dimitrie Gusti' national village museum in Bucharest is
among the must-see objectives in Romania's capital city. This green spot on
Bucharest's map is renowned for its fresh air and village households dating
back to the 17th-18th centuries. In recent years the
museum has played venue for numerous cultural events, from photo and painting
exhibitions to concerts and various workshops for children. An association
entitled 'SOS Save the Danube Delta's flora and fauna' has been staging
workshops for children on the museum premises for a year. These workshops allow
children to learn everything about the Delta and its wildlife. Here is Delia
Popescu, project coordinator with the aforementioned association with more on
"We have been present here on a
weekly basis staging children events on Saturdays. Through these activities we
have been trying to teach them about the Delta, about what this delta means for
Romania and for us as a people and why we need to preserve its wildlife. All
these events have been tailored as games and playing activities for a better
assimilation of knowledge. We are glad that kids are attending these events on
a constant weekly basis."
Delia Popescu has further elaborated on the children activities
and workshops staged here at the Village Museum.
"Today, as the year is drawing
to an end, our games are inspired by holidays in Dobrogea; we are making a
traditional doll, which is wearing a traditional costume that children can take
at home. So kids can get acquainted with traditional folk costumes specific to
Dobrogea and also have a toy to play with."
According to Delia Popescu, these workshops have been constantly
attended by a good number of children.
"Each workshop has been attended
by 5-15 children. We've had pottery workshops, during which we've built animals
and birds from the Danube Delta. By using straws, wood and clay we have tried
to build dioramas illustrating various parts of the delta. Children have been
taught to build traditional households from the delta and windmills as the
region is renowned for its windmills. We post these activities on our webpage
at 'www.sosdelta.ro' or on the museum site and children submit their online
applications for the workshops, where they can join free of charge. Parents
will pay only the entrance fee to the museum."
According to Delia Popescu, children's happiness is the most
"Kids are happy and that's the
most important thing for us. They are excited because these activities are
interactive, different from what they do in front of a computer or a smartphone.
They work, they are making stuff and last but not least they get valuable
information about the delta and its wildlife, which will eventually come in
handy in their adult life. There are kids who have been attending these
workshops on a weekly basis and we encourage them to learn about ecology,
environment issues and things. They read books and we have round table talks on
certain issues in our next workshops."
Maria is 7 years old and has attended almost all workshops with
loving it, as I am always doing new things. Today I am making dolls. I first
made a boy doll and haven't finished his clothes yet, so I don't know how he is
going to look like in the end. Last time I made a diorama entitled 'Fishing in
the Delta' when I made a pelican out of cardboard."
Delia Popescu has told us how the first
workshop organised in February has grown into what we see today:
"Parents always stand by their children and proof of this is also the
workshop we've organised today. Parents and children alike worked shoulder to
shoulder. It's been more difficult at the start of the year, because people
were unaware of our weekly activities here, but now they know and are deeply
involved in our actions, as we want to spend quality time with our children.
Even though the weather is not really fine outside, the Village Museum is a
spectacular museum and it is beautiful all the year around. Now, in winter, we
carry out our activities indoors, but when the weather is fine, we spend the
entire time outdoors. We try to carry out many activities in the open because
most parents do not have enough spare time and keep their children indoors. And
children should learn to spend time in the open."
It's worth mentioning that the Save
the Flora and Fauna in the Danube Delta Association was founded in 2007, at the
initiative of a group of friends, out of their wish to protect this unique
region in Europe and the world: the Danube Delta. In time, the Association has
enriched its activities included in the initial project, such as protecting the
fauna and flora by identifying the species on the brink of extinction, cleaning
up the areas affected by pollution, promoting ecological tourism and this
educational component at an early age, a warranty to instil real values in the
(Translated by D. Bilt & D. Vijeu)