Give Life Association
Software Donations Empower Romanian NGO to Fight Medical System
Give Life Association works toward changing the Romanian medical system in order to raise the life expectancy of those who suffer from cancer. In five years of constant actions, campaigns, and programs, they have raised 3 million euros for medical equipment in hospitals. Moreover, they have changed a government policy so that patients can have access to medical treatment in other countries if it is not available in Romania.
Give Life Association has been working with children and adults with cancer since 2009. But their work is not easy. In Romania, because national statistics on cancer patients do not exist, no one knows how many people are suffering from the illness. Also, children and adults with cancer do not have free access to oncological treatment in Romania, even though such care is guaranteed by law.
Bianca Voinescu, a founding member of Give Life Association, says, “Even though the children with cancer have a real survival chance — in Europe, children are successfully treated in proportion of 80 to 90 percent — in Romania the survival chances are down to 50 percent.” This is because in Romania, children with cancer can’t be correctly diagnosed. Moreover, there is a cytostatics crisis, and modern radiotherapy equipment and medical specialists are lacking.
A large part of the organization’s work takes place through email: discussions with patients, documentation, communication with volunteers, promotions of projects, and fundraising campaigns. “Without technology and online communication, the projects’ implementation would not be possible,” says Voinescu.
Being able to access affordable technology enables the organization to save money and maintain its administrative costs under 10 percent. “We use the donated software in our daily basis work. Windows and Microsoft Office licenses are essential for emails, databases, informative presentations for volunteers, donors, and partners, etc.,” concludes Voinescu.