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MamaPan (Our Daily Bread)

Pâinea noastră cea de toate zilele

The Bakery is the place where bread is made and bread is definitely the food most loaded with stories and significance in all human history. Regardless of its shape or recipe, bread has managed to feed generations after generations, and even gain spiritual value.
MamaPan is a bakery located in a poor Bucharest neighborhood. On a narrow street, in a narrow yard, in a narrow building. It has an office, a locker room with a bathroom, a small warehouse and a room that can only fit a bread oven. Of course, there are many other bakeries just as big or just as small. But MamaPan is one of the few in town making artisan bread – and the only one practicing social economy.
Its employees are single mothers with poor means of subsistence, living at the bottom of the social ladder. They are women willing to work, who think about their social insurance and pension. Women who have refused to settle for the status of “socially assisted”.
Amidst the mediatic bombardment, where the glamorous careless life of the high class is indecently and obsessively exhibited for the lower classes to watch with a mix of envy and despair, the real value of work has become somewhat uncertain.
As such, increasingly more people don’t want to work anymore, and increasingly more people who are currently working for a small wage choose to give it up or work abroad, in the West.
And still MamaPan makes and sells bread, pays salaries, pays taxes and desperately tries to resist. Given the current conditions, all these have become true heroic deeds and – with no intention of ever using pompous words – genuine acts of patriotism.
MamaPan is the epitome of all the struggle and effort that a “clean” business has to make in order to survive.
MamaPan is an excellent example of all the connections between the various layers of society, underlining once again how important it is for people to be aware of these connections.
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