End of vacation with Funny Olympics and Lek Sunshine Games

28. 8. 2015

Today, the centre of Maribor was filled with children having fun at the Funny Olympics and Lek Sunshine Games to celebrate the end of the holidays. As a part of the so-called Holidays with Friends, as the Maribor Friends of Youth Association (FYA) named their summer activities, 150 children from the humanitarian initiative A Wink at the Sun enjoyed free holidays financed with the help of FIHO funds and other donation campaigns by Slovenian Association of Friends of Youth (SAFY) and FYA Maribor. A Wink at the Sun initiative by SAFY, enabling free holidays for children from socially disadvantaged families, has been supported by Lek, a Sandoz company, for 17 years. FIHO contributed funds to enable holidays for 72 children with special needs.

Majda Struc, SAFY vice-president, presented this year’s figures: “This year the initiative A wink at the Sun made it possible to raise EUR 115,830 and thus enable holidays for 351 children. Over the last 17 years 10,600 children went on Wink holidays. Within the campaign 60 Styrian children enjoyed their holidays. In times when an increasing number of parents struggle to offer their children holidays or active, creative free-time activities, this support is truly invaluable.”

To make the last day of the holidays for the children in Maribor as cheerful and memorable as possible, Lek Sunshine Games accompanied the already traditional sports activities of the Funny Olympics. SAFY and the pharmaceutical company Lek, a Sandoz company, organise Lek Sunshine Games as a part of the humanitarian A Wink at the Sun campaign to enable holidays for children from socially disadvantaged families. “We sincerely hope, that with our support these children who would otherwise not be able to go on holidays or be involved in leisure activities, can now step into the new school year with self-confidence and pleasant summer memories,« said Mojca Pavlin, Lek, a Sandoz company.

With SAFY, holidays in Maribor are always fun

During the long summer holidays there are plenty of activities to keep the children entertained in Maribor; including short daily thematic tours, all day trips, art, dance and music workshops, events and competitions, play-and-leisure time activities on the red couch, watching cartoons in the SAFY-cinema, and hiking through the park.

Holidays with friends, activities for children and youth from Maribor, organised by FYA Maribor, started already during the Festival Lent at the end of June, with the natural science workshops at the Art camp in the city park. Later on, the workshops took place in the Centre for Creativity of Youth in Maribor (DUM). At least four workshops were held every day.

From 1 July, short thematic daily tours around Maribor and its surroundings or full-day Wednesday trips around Slovenia and Austria were organized. Altogether, FYA Maribor organized a total of 40 trips which were very popular as on average 40 children took part in each trip; the largest number of participants was 104.

“In total, during July and August, more than 5,000 children attended the Holidays with Friends initiative (workshops, trips, events). The number doubles if we add the activities within the Festival Lent. All activities were free with the exception of Wednesday tours and trips for which a surcharge was required. With the donation by the Večer newspaper we took an additional 52 children from socially disadvantaged families for three free daily trips to the seaside,” explained Saša Mikić, president of FYA Maribor and added that these holiday programs serve as a real life prep school encouraging children’s creativity, curiosity and motor development, independence, social skills, promotion of tolerance, patience and perseverance.

Colourful autumn for SAFY

At the start of the new school year, Breda Krašna, SAFY Secretary General, stressed that SAFY programs and projects will continue during the school year 2015/2016: “Children and schools welcome our programs and we are happy about that. We wish the state would acknowledge the importance of the program, as well, and provide us with support. We are particularly proud of the TOM telephone helpline and the Children’s Parliament. This year both programs are celebrating their 25th anniversary.” SAFY will continue to work on other programs and projects like Children’s Right Protection, Europe in School, Young Researchers – Young Historians, Free-time and Holidays, Social and Humanitarian Programs, and the Children’s Week with this year’s theme “I have to tell you something”.

The initiatives Sick of Words and Paul the Postman fills the schoolbags

In the scope of the Sick of Words initiative SAFY was funding a warm meal (lunch) for 292 children from 79 elementary schools in the amount of EUR 109,901.76 during the school year 2014/2015. Regarding the need to continue with this initiative and the raised funds the SAFY Committee for Social and Humanitarian Matters will process the received applications to help pay school lunches for children from socially disadvantaged families until 15 September 2015. The available funds will be then allocated over the four months (September, October, November, and December 2015). On the 1 January 2016 the amended Act on Enforcement of Rights of Public Funds will come into force.

The initiative Paul the Postman Fills the Schoolbags is carried out in close cooperation with SAFY and Pošta Slovenije (Slovene Postal Services) by collecting school essentials (items for sale at the postal offices) and raising funds until 9 October. By 14 August, more than 12,000 various school essentials were donated within this charity appeal and EUR 5,000 were raised by money transfers and text-messaging. Additionally, Pošta Slovenije contributed school essentials (notebooks, paints, rulers, bags for slippers/sports equipment, reflective objects etc.), also in the amount of EUR 5,000.

Education and training are up next in SAFY at the end of the holidays. The first such training will be held for the Children’s Parliament mentors on 10 September 2015 in Ljubljana. This year’s topic of the Children’s Parliament will be The Traps of Youth.

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Lek, a Sandoz company, is one of key pillars of the second-largest generic pharmaceutical company globally. Its role within Sandoz is to act as: a leading global development center for technologically demanding products and technologies; a global manufacturing center for active pharmaceutical ingredients and medicines; a competence center for the development of vertically integrated products; a Sandoz competence center in the field of development and manufacturing of biosimilar products; and, a supply center for the markets of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), South East Europe (SEE) and Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), and it is responsible for sales on the Slovenian market. For further information please visit http://www.lek.si/en.

Sandoz, a division of Novartis, is a global leader in generic pharmaceuticals, driving sustainable access to high-quality healthcare. Sandoz employs more than 26,000 people worldwide and supplies a broad range of affordable products to patients and customers around the globe.
The Sandoz global portfolio comprises approximately 1,100 molecules, which accounted for 2014 sales of USD 9.6 billion. Sandoz holds the global #1 position in biosimilars as well as in generic anti-infectives, ophthalmics and transplantation medicines. Sandoz also holds leading global positions in key therapeutic areas ranging from generic injectables, dermatology and respiratory to cardiovascular, metabolism, central nervous system, pain and gastrointestinal.
Sandoz develops, produces and markets finished dosage form (FDF) medicines as well as intermediary products including active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) and biotechnological substances. Nearly half of the Sandoz portfolio is in differentiated products – medicines that are scientifically more difficult to develop and manufacture than standard generics.
In addition to strong organic growth since consolidating its generics businesses under the Sandoz brand name in 2003, Sandoz has consistently driven growth in selected geographies and differentiated product areas through a series of targeted acquisitions, including Hexal (Germany), EBEWE Pharma (Austria), and Fougera Pharmaceuticals (US).
Sandoz is on Twitter. Sign up to follow @Sandoz_global at http://twitter.com/Sandoz_Global.

Novartis provides innovative healthcare solutions that address the evolving needs of patients and societies. Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Novartis offers a diversified portfolio to best meet these needs: innovative medicines, eye care, cost-saving generic pharmaceuticals, preventive vaccines and over-the-counter products. Novartis is the only global company with leading positions in these areas. In 2014, the Group achieved net sales of USD 58.0 billion, while R&D throughout the Group amounted to approximately USD 9.9 billion (USD 9.6 billion excluding impairment and amortization charges). Novartis Group companies employ approximately 130,000 full-time-equivalent associates. Novartis products are available in more than 180 countries around the world. For more information, please visit www.novartis.com.

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This press release contains statements and conclusions based on projections of Lek’s future business operations. These estimates are derived from the best information currently available. In case these forecasts prove unreliable, the actual results could prove different from those projected.

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For additional information contact:
Katarina Klemenc
Corporate Communications
Lek Pharmaceuticals d. d.
Phone: +386 1 580 22 43
Fax: +386 1 580 24 32