At the closing ceremony of CASTLE FORMULA multidisciplinary camp 37 young people and 5 facilitators presented their project ideas for the revitalization of two castles. The event was organized by PONT Group with the help of Covasna County Tourism Association between the 9–15 December, 2016 at Hotel Daniel Castle, Tălișoara. The youngsters who were mostly students worked in groups for one week on innovative plans for the conservation and revitalization of Daniel castle of Vârghiș and Sükösd-Bethlen castle of Racoș.
During the closing ceremony of the camp, the five facilitators summed up the ideas developed by the five interdisciplinary teams – according the vision of these young people these castles could function as cultural, touristic, entertainment or recovery centres, but in these buildings one can also host crafts workshops or youth camps. There were various ideas, but all of them aimed to eliminate social problems – the lack of jobs and the emigration of young people – the development of tourism and economy, promoting local culture and traditions. In April, 2017 the ideas will be presented in more details at Sfântu Gheorghe, Covasna County at the "Castle in Transylvania – development models of castles and Racoş Vârghiş" conference.
András Farkas, the co-founder of PONT Group thanked Bánffy Farkas and Gergely Roy Chowdhury for their contribution in the organization of the camp; the City Hall of Esztergom, Hungary for its partnership; Tímea Veres-Nagy for organizing the social activities during the first day of camp; the facilitators; the owners of Castle Hotel Daniel that hosted the camp: Lilla Rácz and Attila Rácz; the experts who held presentations: János Fehér, Hanna Bíró and Lilla Rácz; the Covasna County Tourism Association represented by Zsombor Ambrus and Róber Grüman, the vice president of Covasna County Council for their cooperation.
The Castle FORMULA camp and the upcoming conference that will be held in April, 2017 are part of the “Castle in Transylvania – Strategy and Development Models” project supported by funds from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the Ministry of Culture – Project Management Unit in the framework of the "Conservation and Revitalization of the Cultural and Natural Heritage" – financed through SEE 2009–2014 Financial Mechanism with an amount of 340.782,43 RON, of which the complementary funding is 105.675 RON.
PONT Group has launched a strategic process in March 2015 through the "Castle in Transylvania - Strategy and Development Models" project. As a result of this approach, in June 2016 PONT Group together with experts elaborated the Castle in Transylvania Strategy, a document providing sustainable development models and solutions for the revitalization of castles and manors in Transylvania. The implementation of the strategy is just as important as the document itself, therefore PONT Group chose to continue this practical approach – between October 2016 and April 2017 the organization will try to apply this strategy in the case of Daniel Castle from Vârghiş (Covasna County) and Sükösd- Bethlen Castle from Racoş (Brasov County).
About the Castle in Transylvania project
The Castle in Transylvania project has set a goal of creating a network of experts within relevant fields, who can exchange and share information to help increase the sustainability of Romania's cultural heritage. The project aims to develop strategic thinking by examining the economic and social value of the Transylvanian castles. Our organization will develop a local and regional plan to attract alternative resources necessary for the restoration of these buildings.