In 1997, a group of people involved in the Emmaus movement in France started to get involved in Romania and with people from Iasi, together, tried to find a way to help Romanian orphans, in a country where most of them, after the fall of communism and Ceaușescu, ended up on the streets, without any help from the government. This kind-hearted men and women started giving food everyday and bringing medical treatments, administrative help and basic education (hygiene education, sport, hobbies, etc.)
From 1997 to 2001, the team grew and the Emmaus community progressively moved to Iași, buying housing in the city centre and on the periphery to welcome the first companions. In October 2001, the official inauguration of the Iasi Un Coup de Main Emmaüs Foundation took place, in the presence of Abbé Pierre, the historical founder of the movement. That same year, the foundation opened its first second-hand shop, whose economic activity supports the life of the community and the companions.
In 2003, the foundation extended its action in the rural area, already present in the village of Sârca, by acquiring a parcel of agricultural land located in the municipality of Podu Iloaiei. In 2006, it took over a reception centre opened by a Swiss foundation in the village of Popesti.
During these years, many partnerships have been set up at Iași and abroad to continue to fight poverty and poor housing. In 2019-2020, the foundation obtains the social service licence, which formalises its status. At the same time, it changes its name to the Emmaus Foundation Iași.
Since its beginning, the foundation has been working continuously to achieve its main goals: to help as many homeless people as possible, through financial, administrative, medical, social and food support. In more than 19 years of existence, the community has grown, welcomed many companions, and helped them reintegrate into society. Some of these companions have found employment, left the community and started their own families. This is probably our greatest source of pride.
Update : Nov. 2020