Story by Laura Manciu | Communication and PR Coordinator | Heifer Romania
Photos by Ioan Aurelian Cozma | Project Leader | Heifer Romania
In June 2013, communities in Valea Somesului, Romania passed on the gift of bees to new families. Ten families received 50 bee families and additional hives.
"I was extremely happy that Heifer beneficiaries from all the villages involved in the project have tied a strong friendship, communicating and collaborating whenever needed," project leader Ioan Cozma said.
All project participants are licensed beekeepers—a trade that brings industrious people financial rewards and healthy products.
However, it has been a tough year for Romanian beekeepers. The autumn of 2012 was severely dry, which slowed the bees' development. The following winter was long and the springtime cold.
Warmer weather caused fruit trees to burst into bloom—a positive thing. But severe temperature fluctuations affected the bees' development, pollen harvest and honey production.
"Slowly but surely I saw in their eyes the fading sense of uncertainty and doubt towards the near future, which is characteristic of our country folk," Cozma said.
Thanks to Heifer's support, the Criste and Balint families from Catcau, Romania are excellent examples of success. Their beautiful, well-kept apiary shows respect for the bees, hard work and investment.
Despite a difficult year, everyone rejoiced to see the enthusiasm of the project partners and participants. Their commitment and hard work made the Honey and Trees project successful.