RODA – Parents in Action
RODA is an acronym for Roditelji u akciji, or Parents in Action. RODA is also a play on words since it is the Croatian word for stork and its first three letters, “rod” are the first syllable of the Croatian words for parent and birth.
Full name: Roditelji u akciji
Founded on: September 5th 2001
Address: Croatia, Zagreb, Čanićeva 14
Bank account: 2484008-1100197341, RBA
Identification number (OIB): 06947174377
Telephone number: 00 385 (0)1 61 77 500
Fax number: 00 385 (0)1 61 77 510
Mobile telephone number 00 385 (0)91 586 3717
e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
RODA has been in the VAT (PDV) system since January 1st 2008
RODA is a member of the following international organisations:
IBFAN – The International Baby Food Action Network
ENCA – The European Network of Childbirth Associations
Roda has representatives in the following bodies:
Working Group for Population Politics of the Government of Croatia
National Committee for Breastfeeding of the Ministry of Health
Committee for Implementing the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative Title, UNICEF.
Roda was founded in 2001 and is active in the Republic of Croatia through a developed network of projects and activities that are carried out by the organisation’s more than 250 volunteer members. Our members are located throughout Croatia and include a number of Croatian expatriates who live in other parts of the world.
From its foundation to the present in its projects and programs, ad-hoc activities and lobbying for parental and children’s rights Roda has influenced positive changes in public opinion as well as changes within institutions: the creation of infrastructure and legal frameworks for changing outdated practices.
In its work Roda has become an important stakeholder in the Republic of Croatia in the areas of rights to adequate maternal leave compensation and right to maternal leave, medically assisted conception, pregnancy and improving birthing conditions, breastfeeding promotion, education and counselling, education and support for parents and future parents and child traffic safety. We are a central place for pregnant women, new mothers and parents can get information about the areas we are active in as well as a forum for experiences, suggestions and complaints.
Our children are our future, but their care is not something that we can leave to the future.
Roda’s vision is a society that actively works to fulfil the needs of and protect the availability of the rights of children, parents, future parents and families as a whole, including the right to ever person having an individual informed choice.
Roda’s mission is to change society into a society that acts responsibly towards children, parents, future parents and families – through information, education, active lobbying and inclusion in the processes of change, as well as encouraging parents and other societal groups to question the status quo and be part of change.
Values and principles that we support
Respecting basic human and children’s rights as well as the dignity and value of all persons.
Respect, openness and tolerance for all diverse differences among individuals.
In our activities we promote the value of volunteerism as a form of civil inclusion in societal processes that strengthens individuals, builds a feeling of solidarity and encourages action.
We believe that all information and knowledge must be available and free for all end-users and as a result our activities and educational materials are never sold with the intent to make a profit, instead this is done only in exceptional circumstances when this is the only way that they can be available.
In our work and activities we respect the principles of environmental protection and sustainability.
- We do not adapt to individuals, institutions and systems that do not protect the interests of children, mothers, fathers, families and a natural environment but instead strive to change them. We are motivated by a spirit of activism because we believe in the strength of a group of individuals to affect change. We inform and educate ourselves and the society we live in and act with the best of intentions, taking total responsibility for our actions.
- We support and empower others, aware of the synergy effects of team work. In such cases we are open, tolerant and respectful of diversity (sexual, gender, religion, age, racial, nationality, interests and values) and consider them to be our strengths.
- We share and distribute information and knowledge without putting personal ownership on the results regardless of our contribution to Roda’s work.
- In our work and in promoting the Roda’s vision we use evidenced-based information and modern scientific studies conducted by domestic and/or foreign experts in our areas of work. We are also guided by our values and parental intuition.
- We respect the choices of all individuals and consider the right to choice a basic human right. Through our activities we strive to promote choices that are in accordance with our goals.
- We encourage and empower the friendship of our members, a friendly atmosphere and support within and outside of Roda because we feel that the spirit of togetherness and friendship makes us stronger and is a special and important part of our action.
Roda’s Bodies and Levels of Management
Most of our projects and programs are led by volunteers with the operational support of Roda’s Zagreb office. Project and program leaders (heads) prepare annual activity plans that are approved by the Management Board and the Association’s general assembly. The implementation of the Association’s activities, projects and programs is the responsibility of the project leaders, while the implementation of the annual plan is the responsibility of the Board of Directors and Executive Director.
Roda’s work is largely conducted over an internet platform which allows members to participate in our work regardless of where they live.
Roda’s bodies are:
General Assembly – Management Board – President of the Association – Vice President of the Association – Advisory Council
The General Assembly is the Association’s highest body. It consists of all persons who are full members of the Association. The General Assembly meets at least once annually.
The Management Board consists of five full members of the Association. In accordance with Roda’s Statute, the Management Board members are chosen by the General Assembly amongst Roda’s full members with a one-year mandate. In accordance with the statute and fair management rules, Roda’s employees cannot sit on the Management Board.
The Managment Board manages the work of the Association between assemblies, makes decisions on the employees and names project, program, activity and branch leaders. In addition, the board prepares and approves Roda’s Plan for the Organisational Development. The Management Board strives to make all decisions by consensus and if this is not possible, decisions are made by majority vote.
The Management Board members are all volunteers and do not receive payment for their work.
The Advisory Council is chosen by the General Assembly and their mandate lasts until they are removed. The Advisory Council monitors the Association’s policies and activities. Members are chosen amongst full members that have served on the Management Board. The Advisory Council can have 3 to 9 members, and currently has five members. The Advisory Council meets as necessary, and all members are volunteers that do not receive payment for their work.
The people authorised to represent the Association are the President, Vice-President and Executive Director.
From its very foundation, Roda’s basic motivational strength has been the intense enthusiasm and activism in all things that we accept as an Association. The positive energy and creativity of our members add to our team work, support and societal engagement through which we have affected change and become a voice of authority in the areas we are active in. All of Roda’s activities (education, advising, work with parents, bazaar sales etc.) are conducted by our volunteers in their free time, without receiving any payment for their work.
Volunteerism is one of our greatest values.
As support for our projects, Roda has an office in Zagreb which currently employs three people:
- Office manager
- Roda’s non-profit entrepreneurship manager
- Executive director.
Roda’s employees cannot be members of the Association’s Management Board.
Our office is located at Čanićeva 14, near the Republic of France Square.
The office has an area of 44m2 and was allotted to us in 2005 by the Agency for the Management of State Property and is owned by the Republic of Croatia. After intensive renovations, which involved the assistance of many companies and individuals with donations in materials and labour, we nested in Roda’s Gnjezdo (the stork’s nest) in September 2006.
How is Roda financed?
At Roda we have always taken care that the funds we receive for our activities are sourced from various sources and we believe that, with this and a large percentage of volunteer work, our projects have been sustained through our years of work. We work to apply for grant funding for our projects and enlist the support of donors and sponsors. A significant amount of the funding we receive comes through self-financing, through the sale of advertising banners on our internet forum, membership fees, organising bazaar sales of used children’s clothing and goods (car seats, strollers etc.), and we have also developed a social entrepreneurship program (Roda’s Social Entreperneurship). Since 2008 we have been in the VAT tax system.
From the beginning we have decided not to accept donations from businesses that do not adhere to the International Code on the Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes, and later added the tobacco and pharmaceutical industries as well as companies that conduct unethical marketing towards children to the list of unacceptable sponsors. This has significantly restricted our ability to accept donations from the private sector since precisely the companies that we cannot accept funding from are those that are most interested in sponsorship and advertising. However, we feel that precisely these policies have kept us independent and “clean” from the effects of donors and messages that we send to the public. In order for our projects to be sustainable in these conditions, we have developed numerous self-financing schemes. We feel that it is important to finance our programs and activities from various sources so that our activities are not dependent on one donor or one financing source. In this manner we have maintained continuity over ten years, including times of economic hardship and decreased possibilities of obtaining financing through grants.
Roda’s annual income (in Croatian kunas)
1 EUR = approx 7,3 HRK
2010: 1.024.522 HRK
2009: 1.142.395 HRK
2008: 981.154 HRK
2007: 903.324 HRK
2006: 466.740 HRK
2005: 366.584 HRK
2004: 127.091 HRK
2003: 110.697 HRK
2002: 26.795 HRK
2001: 15.103 HRK
Roda’s past donors
State organisations – The State Institute for the Protection of Families, Maternity and Youth, the Ministry of Health and Social Assistance, the Ministry of Family, Homeland Defenders and Intergenerational Solidarity, the Ministry of Environmental Protection, Construction and Physical Planning, the National Foundation for the Development of Civil Society.
Local Government – the City of Zagreb, the City of Split, the City of Rijeka, the City of Čakovec, the City of Dubrovnik, the City of Pula
Domestic donors (from the private sector) – INA, Allianz, Zagrebačka banka, Croatian Telecom
Foreign donors – AED, REC (in association with the Štorklja Association from Slovenija), NESsT
In addition to those listed, numerous donors that have always helped us with in-kind donations.
There is nothing stronger than the strength of connected mothers.