Many prejudices are associated with football players, former or present, especially when it comes to education. But all of these may be forgotten when we reach the Ciprian Marica Foundation, established by the former Romanian football player driven by the wish to help and support the young generation, starting from the idea that anyone can make a difference into building a better future by any little actions.

“I consider that supporting the youngsters and investing in education, in teachers, Romania will develop. It is definitely a long process, I am very aware of that but step by step, project after project, we hope to get where we all want”, declares the founder.

Young scholars with extraordinary stories

Among the ambassadors of the foundation, there are valuable personalities with performances in their fields: the prime ballerina Monica Petrică, the conductor Tiberiu Soare and Florin Colceag, a renowned supporter of gifted children who have accepted immediately the role of mentors who discover talents in need of support.

“Each scholar has their own story. Some of the children were discovered and proposed by the ambassadors themselves. Professor Colceag introduced us Casian Pătrăşcanu, at that time an Olympian in mathematics and informatics, at present student with full scholarship at MIT, one of the first three universities in the world. Moreover, just to see how small gestures lead to great ones, Casian spends his holidays in Romania, teaching by his own choice mathematics and informatics to our trainees from Buftea.

Getting back to scholars, we also have Mircea Dumitrescu, an extremely talented violinist whom I discovered through Tiberiu, and Irina Tarău, a ballerina with very many prizes won in the country and abroad, a ballerina we have never had heard of if it weren’t for Monica who stood by us. Miruna Iordache and Jennnifer Dossey, multiple national champions at aerobic gymnastics and athletic sports were remarked by my colleagues from the editorials published in the press”, accounts Ciprian Marica.

Moreover, he invites the young talents who need help with their projects to address his foundation. “Other scholars found us. They contacted us by the contact form from the foundation’s web page and told us they needed support to continue their performances obtained so far. Should you know other young people who need our help you may write to us at the address “, says the former football player. The Ciprian Marica Foundation grants a long term limited number of scholarships, the children benefiting of support until the completion of studies.

Money Invested? Exclusively personal….

The financial part of the foundation is fully sustained from own funds by Ciprian Marica, moved by the desire to help Romania evolve. Yes, out of patriotism (although some would take this as a cliché), in its most quantifiable form: what do you do for your country.

“For me, the foundation is a soul project. I never calculated how much I have invested so far and I do not intend to do it. I am happy to help and I am sure that in years I will proudly remember that I have also contributed a bit to sending students to Harvard, Princeton or MIT, to help sound out the Romanian anthem at world championships or other prestigious competitions. I hope that all these children taught at the best universities in the world would return to Romania to start businesses or, why not, to take leading public offices by competences criteria and make sure that the best decisions are made for the future of the Romanians. From my point of view, patriotism is, first of all, in what you actually do for your country. The ambassadors of the foundation are very active in different social projects. Our scholars, at their turn, remind everywhere they go, that they represent Romania. A country rises or falls through the people who live in it. It is important to see us as we are and begin changes starting with us.

More action plans, more future projects

It is not solely children who make performances in education and sport that the Foundation Ciprian Marica addresses. “We act on several plans. On one hand we offer annual scholarships to youths with outstanding results, irrespective of the field they activate in, on the other hand we develop community projects. Through our most recent educative project called “Vocational Laboratory”, hundreds of pupils from the Secondary School No. 1 from Buftea have the opportunity to attend free of charge the weekly classes of mathematics, informatics, acting, public speech, canto, drawing and painting, object design and interior design. The number of classes and subjects taught vary depending on the requests and needs of the children. We wish for these kids to evolve, to discover their vocation and, why not, to make performance. You know the saying: “Do what you really like and you will not work a day in your life”!

Nevertheless, the founder desires to expand by associations and sponsorships in order to help a larger number of children as possible. “I dream about opening a vocational school to make children want to study in Romania, to overcome themselves, and the foundation to be able to offer a considerable number of scholarships to the most talented students. In time, I hope for other persons to join me, who wish and are able to contribute so as the projects of the foundation to grow and have a greater impact”, concludes Ciprian Marica.

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