In the village of Cobâlea in the Șoldăneşti district, a catering and public food service has appeared for the first time, writes Diez.md. “The European Union, together with Sweden, financed the opening of the social enterprise “Popasul Voivodului” in Soldănești, in the village of Cobîlea. The EU offered a grant of 35,000 euros, which goes to the public association “Bella Getica”. This association founded SRL “Popasul Voievodului”, and the basic economic activity of this enterprise is catering and public food services”, said Ana Ciurac, project coordinator at the Eastern European Foundation.
According to Ana Ciurac, SRL “Popasul Vânătorului” started its testing activity through services provided in the village at commemorative meals, ceremonies and other festive events.
Public catering services in an area with tourist potential
“Cobîlea City Hall will give the building to the social enterprise for an indefinite period free of charge. We have a museum and a tourist guesthouse, and this particular project will provide the necessary services, which will complement what is needed for the tourist guesthouse, and thus we will be able to attract more tourists to the locality and in this way develop our locality”. said the town’s mayor, Angela Ababei.
“The village of Cobîlea is a picturesque place, the Stejarul lui Ștefan cel Mare is also located here, it is also a very nice museum of the village”, mentioned Ana Ciurac.
For now, SRL “Popasul Voievodului” has four employees: the director, a cook, a cook’s assistant and a packer.
“As starters, we have salads, pancakes, cold drinks, vegetables. As main courses, we have sarmales, potatoes with meat, plachie, as they say here. We can also adapt at the customer’s request. Not long ago I made cakes. We have orders until the New Year,” says Ala Prisăcaru, director of the social enterprise “Popasul Voivodului”.
“First of all, we make dishes for catering, for events in our village. People don’t have to go to other villages. We also make food for needy old people,” she said, adding that tourists are waiting in the village: “It’s a hotel and a museum. We are waiting for tourists to come, we will offer them traditional Moldovan dishes”.
Free lunches for the elderly
“We will especially help disadvantaged people, the elderly whom we are even now feeding – 35 people – with free lunches. Through this social enterprise, we wanted to include more sectors in one activity – entrepreneurial, public, social. We wanted to create jobs. The idea of innovation lies in social entrepreneurship. It is plus value and the profit will be redirected for the socially vulnerable layers of the community”, added Svetlana Mantea, president of AO Bella Getica, who wants the catering and public food services to contribute to the development of tourism in the village of Cobîlea , so that the scope of services can be extended.
“I want to wish the public association and SRL “Popasul Voievodului” the capacity to absorb funds in the future. I thank the European Union and Sweden for the trust they gave us in the implementation of this project, I thank the East European Foundation and the development partners in the implementation of this important project for the village of Cobîlea”, added the mayor Angela Ababei.
“We hope that other social enterprises will appear soon throughout the Republic of Moldova, because the social impact of these social enterprises is a major one – primarily to solve a community problem or to create specific jobs for people from disadvantaged”, pointed out Ana Ciurac, project coordinator at the East European Foundation.