Reach Romania is a ministry birthed out of The Union Mission in Norfolk, Virginia. Located in the City of Lugoj, Romania, the ministry was the vision of the late Dr. Ted Bashford, former Executive Director of The Union Mission for 53 years. His desire was to relieve the physical and spiritual suffering of the Romanian people by “feeding body and soul.”

A man of vision, faith, and compassion, Dr. Bashford had a deep love for the poor and needy—especially for children and the elderly. In 1993, he watched 20/20’s news segment exposing the conditions of orphaned children in Romania and his heart was deeply moved. After years of prayer, in October 2000 at the age of 80, he made his first trip to Romania.

The Bashford Foundation was established in Romania in 2004, with both American and Romanian leadership, to begin making a difference in the lives of Romanians in need. Since that time, Reach Romania mission teams have traveled almost yearly to minister to the people of Romania.

Our Timeline

October 2000
Dr. Ted Bashford embarks to Romania for the first time. Work begins immediately upon his return to the United States. We begin providing assistance to a Romanian orphanage, repairing doors and windows in their building, as well as purchasing a car for a missionary working with children living on the streets in Bucharest.
May 2001
Dr. Bashford's grandson, James McPherson, makes a survey trip to select a location to begin the ministry.
September 2001
First U.S. mission team trip to build a church in Simand, a gypsy village in Romania.
August 2002
U.S. mission team conducts Vacation Bible Schools and nightly services in villages in southwestern Romania.
March 2003
First Pastors Conference hosted in Lugoj, Romania. Work begins to establish the Bashford Foundation in Romania and meet the legal requirements of the Romanian government.
August 2003
U.S. mission team conducts the first medical clinic in Lugoj, Romania.
March 2004
The Bashford Foundation is officially established in Romania. Daniel Toc, former Foundation President, begins the search for land on which to build permanent children's homes.
U.S. mission teams travel to Romania twice a year, providing medical and wellness clinics, training, and engaging in construction projects.
Piecing together 33 parcels of land, the land purchase of 100 acres in Lugoj, Romania, is complete. Work begins on Master Plan for the property's development.
Master Plan for the property is complete. Work begins on detailed plans for the property and feeding programs.
Detailed plans complete and work to fence the property begins, as required by Romanian law.
March 2014
Groundbreaking ceremony for the first building constructed on the property.
May 2017
Construction of the first building complete.
August 2017
Opening of the first children’s home, named Casa Linda after Dr. Bashford's daughter, Linda Bashford Vaughan. House parents are hired and our first children are welcomed home.
2020 and 2021
All mission trips canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Spring 2022
Ministries at Casa Linda and in local families' homes reactivate with Feeding Body and Soul's benevolence visits. The former mechanical/maintenance building on the property is converted into our second children's home, Casa Armonia (Harmony), to provide for more children in need.
Summer and Fall 2022
Emergency housing, practical aid and spiritual support is provided in Casa Armonia to Ukrainian orphans and their caregivers displaced by Russia’s war in Ukraine.
Winter 2022
House parents are hired to care for children living in Casa Armonia. Infrastructure projects to construct water delivery and electrical systems begin to prepare for the next three children's homes and multipurpose center.