Rotaract Baia Mare T.E.A.M. – Case Study at the International Economy lectures; Interview with Ec. Dr. Horia Botoș
Monday, 15.11.2016, students at the Faculty of History and Philosophy, International Relations profile, Cluj, are having as case study in the International Economy seminary the NGOs’ role in international economy development. Among the examples layed out by the professor, stands Club of Rotaract Baia Mare T.E.A.M. Active in a city of an approximate of 150.000 residents, in the north-west of the country, it wouldn’t, at first sight, frame in the sphere of associations dealing a great impact internationally. Nevertheless, it is given as an example.
First of all, how can NGOs affect the international economy? ”The ground on which the NGOs can influence international economy is their flexibility, greater than that of other economic agents. This flexibility is in the public eye as visibility, reaction time span, interplay with target audience, themes to be discussed. In the last decades, Non-Governamental Organisations have started to be more and more visible, trying to raise awareness in diversified subjects. NGOs have begun activating in areas considered national authorities’ competence. (Peter Uvin, “The Role of NGOs in International Relations”, in Kendall Stiles and Peter Uvin (eds.), Global Institutions and Local Empowerment (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2000), p. 16.). Thus, by virtue of varying activities, functions and responsibilities of economic agents, NGOs are getting more in the spotlight and listened to.” declares Horia Botoș, associated teacher of International Economy in Department of International Studies and Contemporary History from Faculty of History and Philosophy, Cluj-Napoca.
Asked about students’ reaction in the treated subject, professor Botoș answers that, due to the fact that activity and credibility of NGOs is not well-known in the students’ environment, the low reactivity is not a surprise. Visibility of NGOs rised once the law of volunteering has been declared in 2014. Forasmuch the discussion took place in Babeș-Bolyai setting,local structures first emphasized were AIESEC, Patrir and OSUBB. Other specified were WWF, Best, AEGEE or Melinda and Bill Gates Fundation.
Why Rotaract T.E.A.M. as example? ”What the TEAM crew brought anew is how, through projects like Rotaract Global Model United Nations, with its debut edition in Baia Mare and then the one in New York, have raised visibility for our country. This initiative was the first of its kind by a national youth group of the Rotary family. This visibility contributes to the growth of regional and national economy because it displays to possible investitors a positive image of the country.Furthermore, the team has an entire series of projects that increased their notoriety at national level, such as Balul Inimilor (Hearts’ Ball) or blood-donating campaign, ”Donează sânge, salvează vieți”(Donate blood, save lives – DSSV).Rotaract Baia Mare T.E.A.M. example is useful because it is a part of an international structure, but whose activity is visible also locally and nationally. Whenever they have an international project,Romania’s visibility increases.The example is even more representative due to its location.”
On the other hand, The view from interior is the next one: ”Our club has always been thinking strategically and aimed for out projects’ impact to be major. When the idea of an international simulation of the United Nations at Baia Mare popped, we didn’t limit ourselves at just one event. We layed the foundation of a new concept, globally appreciated and all over the place, starting from the 2013 experience in Baia Mare and each year having more Rotaract Clubs join. Practically,after Baia Mare, followed London, Belgrade, New York, Sofia and preparations have already begun for Beirut 2017.Up to now, we are honored that the list of host cities is so varied and we will certainly not stop here.” says Adrian Dan Pop, Rotaract president on 2012-2013 terms of office and Rotary programme coordinator. To sum it up, NGOs’ interventions internationally can be positively in play of the economic activity of the origin country. Multiple examples of international successful projects done by NGOs in Romania are doubling this affirmation.”Through its actions, Rotaract Baia Mare T.E.A.M. is pursuing the development of the local community but it also wants to think bigger.Projects such as RotaractMUN and DSSV are examples of initiatives through which the club is giving proof of youth power in any environment and at any level.” says Evelyne Cușner, president in terms of office 2016-2017.