Cozmac Roman is 79 years old. He lives in northern Moldova, in the village of Bocani, located on the outskirts of the city of Falesti. In 2013, he began receiving in-home care services provided by our partner organization, CASMED.

Cozmac worked his entire life as a brick-layer in the local construction cooperative. Tragically, while he was in the prime of his life, his wife and son died unexpectedly. Cozmac, a man who worked hard to care for his family, was left alone to grieve. Realizing that pain and sorrow arise in the quiet of loneliness, he decided to remarry a woman who herself was a widow. His second wife brought to their new family a son from a previous marriage. Happiness, however, was fleeting. Shortly thereafter, his second wife also passed away, leaving Cozmac to care for his stepson.

For the past 20 years, Cozmac’s stepson has lived faraway in the south of Moldova. Being engrossed in his own everyday routines and worries, he rarely had time to visit his isolated stepfather. Nevertheless, he never forgot about the man who had raised him since childhood. And so, one or two times a year he would visit Cozmac for a day. The two men were close, even though they weren’t blood relatives.

Despite the vast distance separating the two, Cozmac’s stepson felt a need to care for him. Having few options, he turned to the mayor of Bocani, Cozmac’s village, desperate to find out if  anything could be done to help care for his elderly stepfather. The mayor informed him about an organization named CASMED that employs a group of traveling home care nurses. The mayor explained that families wishing to have loved ones enrolled in CASMED’s program would have to help co-finance the medical costs. His stepson quickly agreed to co-fund the program, and immediately put Cozmac on the care list.

Thanks to the dedication of his stepson, Cozmac now welcomes CASMED nurses and social workers two to three times a week. They help clean his home, go shopping, and do laundry.  Cozmac suffers from dementia and some paralysis, and so, when needed, nurses also monitor his health.  Yet, the most important service the nurses provide is their time and company. Knowing that Cozmac is in caring hands is offers his stepson great comfort as well.

Currently, local authorities and other nonprofit leaders are seeking more funding sources to keep these much-needed social and medical services up and running. It is our goal at Diaconia to assist them in this search and to work at the grassroots level, helping both Moldovan people and organizations, to bring dignity and respect to their most vulnerable seniors.

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