‘Archie and the Forest Council’ – the first election-themed children's book, created at the initiative and with the contribution of the Centre for Continuous Electoral Training (CICDE) was launched on 27 October 2022 in Chișinău. The book is authored by writer Ionela Hadârcă and visual artist Lică Sainciuc and was produced under the ‘Enhancing democracy in Moldova through inclusive and transparent elections’ Project, implemented by UNDP Moldova and funded by USAID.
The event brought together well-known literary figures such as Claudia Partole, Vasile Romanciuc, Emilian Galaicu-Păun, as well as children, parents, representatives of CICDE and UNDP Moldova. The participants welcomed the publication of the book, mentioning that it is a unique product on the domestic children's book market.
The book promotes the idea that in a democratic society everyone's opinion and vote counts, telling children about free and fair elections with the help of Archie and his friends. Throughout the story, they become actively involved in the elections taking place in the Emerald Forest so that the cunning crows don't take over the Forest Council.
According to the author, Ionela Hadârcă, ‘Archie and the Forest Council’ is a book that will teach children the importance of their own decisions and their impact on the community, ‘This is a book written with a lot of heart and I hope it will provide the readers with new topics for family discussions, make them love the characters and entertain them and their loved ones.’
The director of CICDE, Doina Bordeianu, congratulated the authors for their fruitful collaboration, which resulted in the publication of the book ‘Archie and the Forest Council’, which in addition to its artistic value conveys a very topical social message. ‘The undeniable literary value pairs beautifully with the important civic message it brings to children – each chapter is a lesson in common sense, empathy and community involvement. Thanks to the book, we hope that Archie will further increase its popularity as an emissary of voter education among both children and parents. An important strength of this book is that although it is aimed at children, it is just as captivating for adults,’ said Doina Bordeianu, director of CICDE.
Since 2019, with the support of UNDP Moldova, CICDE has developed several educational products for children, including five editions of election comics, available in Romanian, Ukrainian, Romanian, Russian and Gagauz, four of which were also released in audio format, as well as in Braille for blind children. Archie's story continued with the development of 3 board games and a puzzle, several editions of the electoral vlogging contest, a filmed puppet theatre, and the mobile campaign ‘Archie's Road to Elections’, in which over 45,000 children from 300 schools across the country received election comic books, board games and CICDE mascots.
Director's Message CICDE Dr. Doina BORDEIANU