Ashoka Fellow Romania
Categories: Alumni, Central-Eastern Europe Region, Social Entrepreneurs
***Alumnus of the Ashoka Visionary Program (CEE) 2018/2019***
Florin is catalyzing a citizen-driven movement for the creation of a functional system for protected areas in Romania. At his initiative, for the first time in Romania’s history a group of private citizens and NGOs lobbied the government to designate 2 areas as national and natural parks, while taking custody over them: Buila Vânturarița National Park and Vacaresti Natural Park.
Florin is driving a cultural mindset shift in the way Romanians treasure nature. In time, he has engaged over 1000 volunteers and convinced the local community in Buila to co-design an eco-tourism offer. With an investment of EUR 300.000 he created an added value of EUR 30 million, increasing the number of tourists over 100 times in a few years, while also saving 3000 ha of forest from abusive exploitation. In the future, Florin aims to transform Văcărești Natural Park in the main tourist attraction of Bucharest and create a global model for environmental protection and education.