Romanian Centennial to be celebrated at the Palace of Westminster


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A series of events this month, culminating in a high-profile reception at the Palace of Westminster, will celebrate Romania’s centennial and recognise the contribution made by Romanians to life in the UK.
Starting today, 1 November, with a motion tabled in the British Parliament congratulating Romania on its upcoming centennial, a second event — a community inspired blood donation drive — follows on 7 November. The month ends with an exclusive Parliamentary Reception on 28 November for 100 leading Romanian-linked figures. The programme is organised under the patronage of London-based actress, Romania-born Mădălina Bellariu Ion.
Commenting today, Bob Blackman MP, Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Romania and primary sponsor of the House of Commons motion, said “I am delighted to have this opportunity to recognise the hugely important contribution Romanian’s make to all areas of life in the UK, and to send the warmest wishes of the House of Commons to Romania in its centennial year. I’m especially pleased that my own Harrow East constituency has become home to some 10,000 Romanian nationals.”
Organised in conjunction with the NHS Blood and Transplant Service, the 7 November blood donor drive unites the major Romanian diaspora groups under a shared goal — to commemorate the 2015 Colectiv fire and provide a visible expression of the contribution made by Romanian’s to British society.

Highlighting the blood donation initiative, Mădălina Bellariu Ion, patron of November’s events, spoke of her pride at seeing the Romanian community come together in this way, “Colectiv was a moment to shatter us all. On 7 November we unite to remember those who were lost and those who carry that loss. I hope it might also stand as a small gesture of thanks to the British NHS for the treatment and support it gave to survivors in the months after the tragedy.”
Mădălina Bellariu will be amongst the VIP guests at the Palace of Westminster on 28 November. She was born in Pitești and has lived in London since 2012. Her screen roles include the HBO series The Young Pope with Jude Law, Bollywood movie Dobaara: See your evil, and most recently an appearance in Coronation Street, Britain’s longest running TV series. She will shortly begin filming The Voice on location in Australia. Bellariu additionally serves as an Ambassador for The European Nature Trust taking particular interest in the Foundation Conservation Carpathia project.

The invitation only reception, hosted by Drew Hendry MP, Romanian Honorary Consul for the Scottish Highlands and Islands, brings together leading business figures, entrepreneurs, high achievers in the arts and academia plus representatives of diaspora groups and Romanian-linked good causes. The evening will celebrate what it means to be a Romanian in the UK, and show what Romanians have done for the UK. Invitees will be joined by Members of both the House of Lords and the House of Commons.
Expressing his pleasure as host on the night, Drew Hendry MP said “I was greatly honoured to be made an Honorary Consul for Romania in 2011 and to have continued in this role as an MP. I visited Romania again earlier this year, and I’m delighted to offer this reception as part of the celebration of Romania 100 in the UK.
The 28 November Parliamentary reception is made possible through the support and sponsorship of Banca Comercială Română and UiPath. Additional sponsorship from Vast Resources plc. Romanian wine is provided on the night by Avincis Wines.

The organisations partnering for these events are British Romanian Chamber of Commerce in London, CAESAR Foundation, GRASP UK, Rațiu Family Charitable Foundation, Romani in UK, RomanianIT, Romanian Medical Society in UK and Romanian Women in UK. The initiatives are also supported by the Romanian Embassy in London, the Romanian Cultural Institute in London and the All Party Parliamentary Group for Romania.

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