Our founder

Growing a Charity into a Family

Jane Nicholson first visited Romania in 1991 after watching appalling television images which exposed the cruelty inflicted within state run orphanages during the dictatorship of Nicolae Ceaușescu. She co-founded the charity FARA that same year.

All the services she has created and developed match her initial idea that abandoned people shouldn’t live in institutions but in places that resemble families, with homes and access to therapy, education and special care.

She had previously been chair of Sue Ryder, serving on the Trustee board for many years, commissioning health care services for the sick and disabled both in the UK and the Balkan States.

As a trained nurse, and with extensive experience in the charity sector, Nicholson set up in FARA a variety of care services for vulnerable children and adults to tackle poverty and transform lives.

She has been a member of the European Parliament committee (Eurochild) representing FARA and other NGO’s in Romania on issues of child poverty and social justice. Until recently she also found time to operate as prison chaplain in the UK. Nicholson was awarded the MBE in 2013 for her humanitarian work in Romania.

An enthusiastic icon painter, Nicholson is also a member of the Carmelite Order in the Catholic Church and her inspiration and vision remain at the heart of FARA.  She continues to travel to Romania frequently to guide and share her vision as Founder.

Read more about FARA

Our mission, vision and values

Our charity is based on Christian values of justice and dignity, welcoming people of all faiths and none. FARA collaborates across all sections of society to build relationships and partnerships, striving to build a just society serving the common good.

Romanian rural poverty

Tackling Poverty, Transforming Lives

Our services include care for vulnerable children and adults with learning disabilities, youth at risk and community-based programmes tackling poverty through education.

Who we help

FARA is today one of the largest and most experienced care providers in Romania, giving support to vulnerable children and adults, youth at risk, those with learning disabilities, as well as families and their communities.