A miniature of the central square in Timisoara , Source: Harald Muller / Unsplash

Timisoara opens first Romanian resilience centre for exceptional crisis responses

Timisoara opens first Romanian resilience centre for exceptional crisis responses

Local authorities want to help and coordinate civil society activities during outstanding situations

Yesterday, authorities in Timisoara, Romania, announced the launch of a so-called Resilience and Community Mobilization Centre. The centre will be run by local social authorities and is supposed to provide rapid humanitarian help in emergency situations.

Mayor Dominic Fritz explained that in the last three years Romanian national authorities have been quite slow to respond to crises like the pandemic and the war in Ukraine. The resilience centre is supposed to help bolster the local response from a logistical standpoint, giving the municipality more flexibility and resources to react.

A response led by citizens

According to a statement by the city, Romanian citizens were quick to respond to the Covid-crisis as well as the war in Ukraine. Near the outset of the war, many people started driving to the border and ferrying refugees through Romania, helping them along the way. Moreover, many people offered to take them in as emergency accommodation.

From the municipal standpoint, the Romanian border municipality of Suceava, for example, announced they are prepared with emergency tents and emergency camps just two days after the outbreak of the war. While the response was rapid and local, it was supported by the Ministry of Internal Affairs.  

Coordinating an emergency response

The Resilience Centre itself is located in a municipal building which was renovated in 2022. According to the city, it is supposed to function as a sort of coordinator for civil society, with municipal support. Otherwise, the space and the service will be managed by local social services of the Directorate of Social Assistance of the Municipality of Timişoara through the Resilience and Community Mobilization Service.

Currently, the centre is used to coordinate and manage services, benefits and support for Ukrainian refugees.

Mayor Fritz was quoted in a press statement explaining: “At the beginning of the Russian aggression against Ukraine, civil society mobilized in an exemplary way to support Ukrainians who fled the path of war, but without central coordination. No one waited for the state. We learn from these lessons and we want Timisoara to be prepared for the next major crisis, whether it's a pandemic or a wave of refugees or something else."



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