Emmaus Europe


Emmaus in Romania

Emmaus has had a presence in Romania since 1995 and the movement now has 3 member groups in the country. The Romanian groups mainly work with children and young people in light of the consequences of Ceausescu’s terrible policy of encouraging births which led to children being abandoned. The three Emmaus groups in Romania are split far and wide across the country and work in very different ways:
  • The Emmaus Iasi foundation was created in 2001 following a project led by a French-Romanian team to support homeless people that had been raised in orphanages. This group is based in the north east of Romania.
  • The Emmaus Satu Mare group was created in 2010 to continue the work of an association that had been running orphanages since 1990. This group is based in the north west of Romania.
  • Amicii Emmaus in Târgu Jiu, based in the south west of Romania, was created in 2011 to provide financial support to an association which was launched in 1994 and which ran a centre for children.


In the city of Iasi the action began in 1995 along with the French organisation, Coup de Main, in order to provide shelter, work, a place in society and dignity for the poor, particularly young homeless people. A Romanian organisation was set up in 2001, opening a community house for young homeless people, a vegetable garden and a small farm.

Main Activities

  • Welcome, providing accommodation, reintegration
  • Collecting, reusing, recycling and selling on objects
  • Political campaigning and awareness raising
  • Local, european and international solidarity initiatives

Secondary Activities

  • Farming/rearing livestock
  • “Doing the rounds”
  • Fast food
  • Construction services

Key numbers

3 member groups

5 sales

140 people involved in Emmaus

590 tons of merchandise per year

3 Local groups
Click to see more information about a group



Gelu Nichitel
National delegate for Romania

The Challenges in Romania

“We have 5 sales areas in total, including one that is out in the countryside. Each of the groups has either 1 or 2 second-hand shops and this is our main source of income. We have almost 140 people involved in the Emmaus movement in Romania, including the companions, volunteers, staff and other people who are close to the movement. We are currently launching and strengthening both local and national partnerships.”

With pictures

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Container loads – solidarity that goes beyond donated goods

Meeting with Jean-Philippe, the leader of Emmaus Satu Mare, Romania. He tells us about how container loads are arranged, but above all, reveals what underpins these initiatives to share donations between the Emmaus groups who receive a lot of donated goods, and those who receive less.

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Tackling Poverty / Solidarity


Emmaus Iasi: an ingenious way of reusing old desks

Within Emmaus we’re great at adapting objects and reusing them in all kinds of innovative ways. Another great idea has recently emerged within the movement: a Romanian group has made two bedrooms in a hangar out of old desks!

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Circular economy / The environment 


Emmaus in Romania

A discussion with Gelu Nichitel, national delegate for Romania on the board of Emmaus Europe.

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