In case you didn't know, the name October comes from the Latin octo, "eight," because this was the eighth month of the early Roman calendar. When the Romans converted to a 12-month calendar, the name October stuck even though it's now the 10th month.

In October, autumn comes into full swing and is a month full of national and global celebrations. We hope you are ready and excited for Halloween. At RUF, things are no different, and we want to share all the significant events and news with you.


Newsletter Highlights

   👉 Congratulations to the winners 🏆 of the "Romanian American National Heritage Award"

   👉 Tudor Petrut joins RUF as Brand Ambassador

   👉 After 4 years of work, "Via Transilvanica" launches with a bang

   👉 Everyone loves "Dimineti cu Povesti la ROCO 🇷🇴" (Storytelling)

   👉 "Romanian Language 🇷🇴" classes now available ONLINE  

   👉 The Federation of Romanian American Organizations (FORA) launches in Washington, DC

   👉 Repatriot Summit 2023 held in Iasi and Chisinau

   👉 Cargo comes to Chicago + lots of events 🎸 coming up!


The Romanian American National Heritage Award



We are very excited, and we congratulate this year's award winners. The Romanian American National Heritage Award recognizes exceptional contributions to the cohesion of the Romanian community and the preservation of its heritage, language, culture, and traditions. 

The Award Ceremony will be hosted at the Alianța Gala on November 30th.




Welcome Tudor Petrut

RUF Brand Ambassador


“Proud and humbled to be a brand ambassador for RUF - Romanian United Fund, a vital organization from Chicago that represents and involves the larger Romanian-American community and its natural connections to our home county.”



Some of you know him from "The Graduates (Liceenii)," a 1986 Romanian coming-of-age film directed by Nicolae Corjos, where he plaid "Serban," other for being "Peggy" in a commercial campaign for Discover Card, or as funny DJ "Drazen" in the sitcom "Sunnyside" on NBC.

From now on, you will also know him as RUF Brand Ambassador.

Thank you from our hearts for accepting this role, and looking forward to a great and fun collaboration.


Via Transilvanica Launched on October 8th


As you may know, Via Transilvanica was the reason RUF had its first-ever Gala in December 2019 where we raised over $100K to mark 100 kilometers of the beautiful trail in Romania. Participating guests donated to acquire over 100 milestones on the trail.



The plan was to complete the trial in 10 years. Well, Alin Useriu, the president of Tasuleasa Social and the man who envisioned the project, didn’t think that four years later, on October 8th, 2023, they would inaugurate the 1400 kilometers trail from Putna to Drobeta Turnu Severin. 

More than 10,000 wonderful people helped turn that vision into reality, volunteering to mark the route through the Carpathians and some of the most spectacular landscapes on the continent. 

Mihai Lehene, president of RUF, has said how Via Transilvanica became one of RUF's signature projects from start to finish.

We are incredibly thankful to our volunteers Dan Cosma, Calin Moigradan, Monica Moigradan, Ioana Savos, Sebastian Savos, and Mihai Bora who were present at the VT launch in Alba Iulia to represent RUF. They shared their stories about what the trail means to them.

It sparks our hearts with a feeling of fulfillment to see this project completed.



Saturday Morning Storytelling


      🇷🇴  “Peste dealuri zgribulite,         

Peste tarini zdrentuite,

A venit asa, deodata,

Toamna cea intunecata.


- Cri-cri-cri,

Toamna gri,

Nu credeam c-o sa mai vii.."


🇺🇸 “Over barren, shriveling hills,

‘Cross-tattered, empty plains,

Dark Autumn, murk and fearsome,

To lay bedlam hath come.



Gray Autumn brrr,

Didn’t think you’d show up, lass…”


"Balada unui greier mic", de George Toparceanu

“The Ballad of a Small Cricket”(

"Balada unui greier mic" de George Topârceanu (Poetry reading/ Romanian poets)



It's hard to imagine a childhood without its magical stories. At ROCO Excellence Center, a group of heartfelt volunteers has prepared a series of activities for the children in fairy tales!

More and more kids are joining every Saturday since we launched on September 8th, and our hearts fill with joy seeing them happy. 

Bring your little ones in the coming weeks. We promise they will have fun! 


This project is realized with the support of the State Department of Romanians Abroad



Romanian Language Classes: Now Online



We are happy to announce that the Excellence Center is accommodating the needs of our community with the addition of two online classes for the Romanian language starting in November. 

The classes are in full swing at ROCO Chicago, the Romanian Community Center, and create instant moments of irreplaceable value: being Romanian, speaking Romanian, learning the Romanian language, and feeling at home at ROCO.

We could not be more proud of the parents and children that took on the challenge this session and of our teachers Gabi Cosma, Anca Butas, Natalia Petrache, Alina Vance, Gabriela Cosma, and Gabriela Hanta for all they do! 

Their passion and devotion towards our community are welcomed wholeheartedly and with gratitude.

This project is realized with the support of the State Department of Romanians Abroad



FORA - Federation of Romanian American Organizations Launch


                                                                                                         Founding Organizations


FORA is an umbrella organization and is inviting all like-minded nonprofits to join in. 

This grassroots drive to nurture an authentically representative national voice is designed to engage in civic advocacy, promote cultural values, coordinate resources, and provide mutual financial support. It unites the Romanian-American communities and all organizations working for the welfare of Romanians in a single collaborative forum. 

Its mission is to build a stronger Romanian-American community and shape its legacy for the well-being of future generations. 

We are proud and happy to announce that Mihai Lehene was voted President of FORA by the Founding Member Organization.




Repatriot Summit 2022


Every year in October, Repatriot Summit brings together Romanian entrepreneurs from around the world to introduce them to investment opportunities in Romania. This year’s summit included Chisinau, opening the door for connection opportunities across the Romanian border in the Republic of Moldova.

Their message: "Romania offers business opportunities that, together, we can seize!" is a reminder that technology and communication are giving us an opportunity to engage and bring significant contributions to the development of Romania, and the creation of an involved Diaspora.



Since the first summit, 7 years ago, over 1800 entrepreneurs have participated, and they have been followed online by over 20 million Romanians from all over the world. They focused on drawing the authorities' attention to the Diaspora's role in the country's development among others.

Our Communications Director, Andreea Rebaltescu, was present at this year's summit and spoke about the RUF's partnerships and involvement in impactful projects to strengthen the bridge between Diaspora and Romania.

We hope to partner with and begin projects in the Republic of Moldova and continue growing the RUF community.



Active Campaigns

Diaspora Events

ROCO Chicago invites you to the Cargo American Tour in-person event Saturday, November 12th, at 6 pm CST

ROCO Youth invites you to Six Flags Fright Fest Trip on Sunday, October 30th, 12 pm CST

ROCO Chicago presents in person ROCO Teens Monthly Meetup: November 2022 Friday, November 4th, 6 pm CST

Romanians of DC presents Homo Americanus in-person event, Sunday, November 13th, 5 pm EST

ROCO Fun is presenting RO-Comedia Hai sa razi! in person event on Saturday, November 18th, 6 pm CST

Romanians of DC presents De dor romanesc|Romanian Longing in person event on Saturday, November 18th, 7 pm EST

ROCO Chicago invites you to Homo Americanus in-person event, Sunday, November 20th, 6 pm CST


Amazon Smile Campaign


Select RUF as your charity of choice on Amazon today.

If you use the Amazon app on your phone, you will have to turn on "Generating Donations" on every device you use (Settings > Amazon Smile > Turn ON Amazon Smile). When you purchase from your computer, make sure you use (not simply Amazon doesn't make it easy on us :)

Check out and share our Amazon Smile video on YouTube (courtesy of Cody Barbu).


Follow us on Social Media.



RUF - Romanian United Foundation


RUF is a 100% pass-through fundraising platform. We help diaspora & local nonprofits in Romania access the funding, tools, training, and support they need to become more effective. We do this by connecting NGOs, donors & volunteers from all over the world