The Most Beautiful Christmas Present: The Gift of Education!

Luxoft continues to support charitable organizations as a part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategy aimed at making the world a better place. The 2015 Edition of the Christmas Trees Festival organized by Save the Children Romania has raised 250,000 Euro from the auction of 22 trees specially created for this event. At the Christmas Trees Festival Gala, which took place on Thursday, December 10th, trees conceived and created by famous Romanian famous designers were sold for amounts of between 500 and 19,500 Euro to companies that participated in the auction. Together, the amount gathered from the tree auction was 108,100 Euro, with 4,000 Euro being gathered from raffle tickets and 142,000 Euro from sponsorships.

We thank everyone who was with us this year! Because of the hard work of the designers, sponsors, and partners, we succeeded in successfully carrying forward this tradition of magic trees. We've collected 250,000 Euro that will help children go to school. Furthermore, the funds we gathered this year will allow us to give an education to disadvantaged children next year as well! declared Andi Moisescu, President of Save the Children Romania.

Minister of Education Adrian Curaj, who was also present at the event, declared that equal opportunity and access to education for disadvantaged children represent his number one priority.
I came here full of emotion, but now I have stronger emotions because while I was talking with the students, a little girl hugged me spontaneously. What your organization does is wonderful!
exclaimed the Minister. We are proud and thankful for the opportunity to support the organization that makes such a big positive impact on people’s lives.

One of the most valuable trees (sold for 19,500 Euro) was “Our Tree” by Omid Ghannadi and Amalia Enache, which represents Romanian solidarity. Built of coloured candles and with popular symbols in the colours of the Romanian flag, the tree is dedicated to the victims of the October tragedy at the Colectiv Club in Bucharest.

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The candles from the front of Colectiv Club continue to burn on Christmas through this tree. This tree represents the solidarity of the Romanian people. It shows us through a general image how beautiful we are together, for better and for worse, declared designer Omid Ghannadi.

The Save the Children Tree, created by designer Ştefania Mircea together with volunteers from Save the Children, sold for 12,000 Euro. The tree is made of friendly letters, coloured figures and funny games from the wonderful world of childhood. World tennis champion Horia Tecău spoke live from Florida and sent a message to the organizers: “I'm glad I can be with you for this cause and I want to be more and more involved in your programs in the future.”

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Another tree that sold for a large sum of money during the auction (10,000 Euro) was that of Irina Neacşu. The message of her tree was “Together” represented by a golden bird with feathers in the form of coloured hearts. She had this to say:
Together we become, we can, we realize, we move, we change. Christmas is the story of being together with love, with whole-heartedness, with wishes. Togetherness happens too rarely and remains an abstract gesture too frequently. But today we were able to join forces and help the children.

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The tree “Magic Winter Wonderland” from designer Stephan Pelger was sold for 8,000 Euro. When asked about his inspiration, he said:
My childhood winters remain the most beautiful winters I have ever seen! The white snow, the fresh air, the smell of sweet cake and cinnamon, the laughter of children – all these mean the perfect, magic winter, and they also represent the source of inspiration for the tree this year. I'm glad that through this tree I can help children go to school.

Gabriela Alexandrescu, Executive Officer of Save the Children Romania, restated that the purpose of the Christmas Trees Festival is to reduce the rate of school abandonment. She said:
We thank all the designers and generous people who were with us. Without the generosity of our sponsors, this event wouldn't have been possible. We also thank all the companies, designers, and everyone else who supported us and who believe that together we can give these children a chance to have an education and a decent future.

The funds collected from the Christmas Trees Festival Gala will be used in order to finance the educational programs Educaţie Preşcolară (Pre-School Education), Şcoală după Şcoală (School after School) and A Doua Şansă (The Second Chance), which together help about 2,000 underprivileged children and their families.

Luxoft has been supporting the festival since 2012. Through 14 editions up to the present day, The Christmas Trees Festival has facilitated access to education for 2,323,600 children from disfavoured environments. The total amount collected during all previous editions has risen to 3,104,100 Euro. We hope to be close to this event every year and to inspire others to be a part of this cause, because for these children the gift of education really is the most beautiful Christmas present!

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