On March 21st, 2015, on World’s Down Syndrome Day, 77 Romanian cities and 2 cities from the Republic of Moldova hosted the March for Life 2015 – “Every Life Is a Gift”. The big cities have more experience from previous editions and people have become accustomed to the event, which has been reflected in the number of participants: twice as many as last year. The march is part of a more comprehensive series of events, The Pro-Life Week, involving conferences, debates, live performances, film projections, exhibitions and other such manifestations dedicated to life, children and family issues.
The March for Life has the goal of raising awareness on the value of each human life, regardless of its stage of development, the number of chromosomes or possible disabilities. The focus was on celebrating life (with messages such as: “Every life is a gift” or “Mother, thank you for having me”). These messages and the fact that the event is apolitical and inter-confessional was the secret of success in bringing together all forces in favor of life. This year, the visual branding was more coherent, common across Romania and the Republic of Moldova, with colorful and positive signs and messages made by Studenti pentru Viata association, the main organizer.
This year and last year, the event was organized in Bucharest and coordinated at national and international level by Studenti pentru Viata.
At the press conference launching the Pro-Life Week, Alexandra Nadane, President of Studenti pentru Viata (photo below, second from the left), mentioned that her organization does not promote a ban on abortion, but it promotes instead a positive pro-life message trying to raise awareness about the problems of young mothers and women in pregnancy crisis and about the discrimination against unborn children who often are denied the right to life based on the fact that they may suffer from a disability after birth or that they are simply different – for example, 90% of those with Down Syndrome, who have more chromosomes, are aborted.
There were around 2.500-3.000 people in the street for the March for Life in Bucharest, around 2.000 in Iasi, while in Cluj, where all denominations joined efforts, the turnout was of about 4.000 participants. Hundreds of people rallied through each of the other cities.
The Bucharest rally ended in Tineretului Park, with the Live for Life concert, where tenor Vlad Miriţă sang with the children (photo above) and IRIS, a major Romanian rock band performed.
During the concert, actress Ioana Picos, March for Life ambassador (photo above) and host of the Live for Life event, reiterated the movement’s proposals to improve quality of life for mothers and children and encourage families to welcome life in their midst:
– pregnant women to receive pregnancy allowance covering for current expenses (healthy food, supplements, new clothes) and free access to all needed medical services in pregnancy, in addition to the eight medical exams covered by the national public health insurance system