“Football Stories for the Little Ones” – a book with illustrations drawn by children with Down syndrome

The football club for children and youth in Chisinau, Dacia Buiucani, is the place where young footballers aim to perform in sports. They are also actively involved in countless social causes with an impact on the community. In collaboration with the Sunshine Association, the project “Football Stories for the Little Ones” was born. It is a book with educational stories about football, with drawings that can later be colored and unique illustrations made by children with Down syndrome, realitatea.md reports.

Marusica Burlaca, a 7-year-old girl from the capital, also diagnosed with Down syndrome, is the club’s ambassador and the author of the drawing on the cover of the book. It is dedicated to both Moldovan and Ukrainian children who are refugees in our country, and the concept is also translated into Ukrainian.

The idea was realized within the project “Increasing Resilience through Social Cohesion and Employment of Refugees and Local Community People,” implemented by HEKS/EPER Moldova, the Swiss Agency for Cooperation, and HELVETAS Moldova. The author of the texts is Ivan Goncearuc, Director of Strategic Development Dacia Buiucani and Project Manager, said, “Our collaboration with HEKS/EPER Moldova started from the desire to further develop the social engagement branch of Dacia Buiucani club and work with national and international projects.”


The book launch was set for International Day of Persons with Down Syndrome, on March 21. As it is a tradition for Dacia Buiucani and the Sunshine Association to organize grand events on this date, more than 150 people were invited, including about 50 children and adults with Down syndrome.

Officials from the Embassies of Romania and France were also present at the launch, and Moldova’s Minister of Labour and Social Protection Alexei Buzu said, “Today it is important to sit and think about the effort and dedication, the heroism of the parents of children with Down syndrome.”

Children and parents from the Sunshine community, children from Ukrainian-language schools in Chisinau, and other educational institutions will have access to the book.

HEKS/EPER Moldova, HELVETAS Moldova with the support of the Swiss Agency for Cooperation, through the project “Increasing resilience through employment and social cohesion of refugees and vulnerable Moldovans” supports several needs that directly or indirectly fit its purpose covering 8 districts of Moldova.

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