Improved access to administrative services for residents of Cula area, Ungheni district
The Cula area, which includes 7 communities in Ungheni district, is home to public services accessible to all, thanks to infrastructure improvements made with EU and UNDP support.
The villages of Sinești, Boghenii Noi, Cornova, Năpădeni, Măgurele, Condrătești and Hîrcești commune are known to be part of the Cula area. Where until now visitors had to climb dozens of steps to get into the mayor’s offices, ramps have now been installed. Ensuring that equal and dignified access to public services for all people is a fundamental right.
The access ramps installed now allow people with disabilities, older people, and parents with strollers to enter the mayor’s office. The Cula area has over 8,000 inhabitants, of which just over 400 are people with disabilities.
Pavel Sclifos from the village of Cornova is 33 years old and has been using a wheelchair since he was a teenager. Until recently, getting inside the mayor’s office has not been easy for him.
“Everything has changed. It’s much easier now. It’s easy to get in, easy to get out, I can get around without help!” — says Pavel.
The village of Măgurele, another village in the Cula area, is mostly inhabited by older people. The health facility is also at the mayor’s office, which can only be reached by climbing the stairs first.
With the installation of a 12-metre ramp, there should be no more inconveniences and all residents must have access to administrative and health services.
“It is a very much needed and sustainable project; the ramp is made of stainless steel. Older people who come to the mayor’s office now prefer to use the ramp rather than climb the stairs. It is also easier for parents with children in strollers to get to the health facility.
People were shocked at first, as they could not believe that money had been invested in this ramp,” says Dumitru Roșca, the acting mayor of Măgurele village.
Physical accessibility goes hand in hand with information accessibility
In addition to the installation of access ramps, LED information boards were installed in the seven mayor’s offices and over 400 leaflets were distributed. Moreover, an intercom system has been installed in the Ungheni Social Assistance and Family Protection Office to facilitate the communication between the local residents and the local public authorities.
“Thanks to the ramps, the administrative services have become more accessible. In my opinion, the impact is positive and has changed people’s attitude towards the Cula area,” said Viorica Său, member of the “Social Alternatives” NGO, which coordinated the accessibility improvements.
For the installation of the ramps and information boards, as well as the intercom system, the EU-funded “EU4Moldova: Key Regions” Programme, implemented by UNDP and UNICEF, awarded a grant of around €20,000.
Every public and private institution is responsible for ensuring dignified and comfortable access for everyone: people with mobility needs, parents with children in strollers, and older people.
Over the years, UNDP and its partners have supported the improvement of the accessibility of several police stations, the offices of the National Institute of Justice, the National Employment Agency from Soroca, Chișinău, etc.
At the same time, UNDP conducted the most comprehensive study on polling station accessibility, the first assessment of its kind in the Republic of Moldova, considering that polling stations are usually located in public institutions.