Small grants to CBOs in the Eastern Partnership countries for immediate material needs arising from COVID-19 related measures

AFEW International is launching a call for proposals from community-based organisations (CBOs) working with key populations on immediate material needs arising from COVID-19 related measures, such as PPE and IT/communication equipment.

We aim at supporting multiple organisations from the Eastern Partnership countries (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine) with small grants. The maximum amount per grant is € 3.500.

Eligible costs

The Call will support CBOs that have been struggling to adapt to the new COVID-work environment with extreme limits in movement, reduction of interaction with target beneficiaries and the transition to online/remote management and mobilization. To address these challenges, AFEW International will provide support to CBOs in order to adapt and manage these changes.

  • Purchase of equipment for meetings and office rooms to facilitate distance/remote work;
  • Purchase of IT equipment to be able to facilitate communication with the clients;
  • Purchase of COVID-19 personal protection materials (masks, gloves, sanitizers, soap) for organizational and clients use;
  • Purchase of other sanitary equipment and materials for use in the office and/or when meeting clients on outcalls.

How to apply

  • Fill out the application form. An application shall be submitted in English or Russian. The deadline for submitting the form is on 30 April 2021 at 17:00 CET (Amsterdam time). All proposals submitted after the deadline will not be reviewed!
  • Send this form to the following email address: covid19@AFEW.nl. Once submitted, you will receive an automated notification.
  • Wait for the decision of the Selection Commission regarding your application. The review of the applications will be done within 3 weeks after the deadline. The decisions will be announced on 21 May 2021.
  • If you have questions, please refer them to the above-mentioned email address or to Valeria Fulga: valeria_fulga@AFEW.nl.

The Application Form consists of two parts. Part 1 refers to the content of the proposal. Part 2 refers to organizational and banking details. Both parts need to be submitted at once.

More details about the call for applications  – here.

Application Form COVID-19 Solidarity Program – download.

Budget form download.

Banking details form download.

This call is a part of a regional COVID-19 Solidarity Program in the Eastern Partnership countrieswith the financial support of the European Union. This project supports community based organizations (CBOs) to respond to the immediate and longer term impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Eastern Partnership countries. AFEW International together with the Netherlands Helsinki Committee is part of the consortium led by People in Need. The consortium has the goal of enhancing the capacities of CBOs to effectively respond to short- and medium-term needs and influence longer-term policy reforms that support vulnerable groups and those disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Bi-weekly update on the COVID-19 situation in the countries of the Eastern Partnership

Within EU-funded COVID-19 Solidarity Programme for the Eastern Partnership countries AFEW International prepares bi-weekly updates on the COVID-19 developments in the region (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine). 

You can now find all the updates in the COVID Corner on our website.

As of 11.02.2020
Regional overview

The number of coronavirus cases per population ratio since the start of the active phase of the pandemic (April 1) in the 6 countries of the EaP

Source: Sciences Po Media lab Coronavirus Country Comparator

ARMENIA

Location Confirmed Recovered Deaths
Armenia 168,676 160,670 3,135

 

Measures to contain the epidemic

— The quarantine in Armenia declared on January 11 still remains in place till July 11, 5 p.m.

Vaccine

— On February 1, the Russian Sputnik V vaccine against the coronavirus has been approved by the Armenian Health Ministry, according to a press release of the Russian Direct Investment Fund.

Education

— Schools in Armenia resumed in-person learning from December 7. Clinically vulnerable and 65+ employees of schools can work remotely. At-risk children will continue learning remotely.

 

AZERBAIJAN

Location Confirmed Recovered Deaths
Azerbaijan 231,509 225,914 3,167

 

Measures to contain the epidemic

— Authorities in Azerbaijan are maintaining the nationwide special quarantine regime as of February 5 to mitigate the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19); the measure will remain in place through at least April 1.

— Land borders remain closed, and most passenger flights are suspended.

— Nonessential stores are currently operating in accordance with strict hygiene and social distancing mandates. Protective face coverings and social distancing are mandatory at all times in enclosed or crowded public spaces; public gatherings of more than 10 people are prohibited nationwide. The Baku Metro remains closed; public transport is suspended at the weekend in Baku and some other urban centers until at least April 1.

Vaccine

— 62,398 healthcare workers in Azerbaijan had received their first doses of the Chinese-made CoronaVAC vaccine as of February 2. Previously, Azerbaijan placed an order for four million doses of the CoronaVAC vaccine manufactured by the Chinese SinoVac company. The country had also joined COVAX, a campaign co-led by the vaccine alliance Gavi, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), and the World Health Organization (WHO). As part of the initiative, Azerbaijan will receive two million doses of vaccine for one million people.

 

BELARUS

Location Confirmed Recovered Deaths
Belarus 261,859 250,078 1,811

 

Measures to contain the epidemic

— The Healthcare Ministry’s anti-coronavirus recommendations remain the same – social distancing, limiting face-to-face contact, avoiding crowds, wearing masks.

Vaccine

— As of February 10, the vaccination of Belarusian healthcare workers with Russia’s Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine is nearing completion:

— Brest Oblast vaccinated more than 91% of those who signed up for the first stage of the immunization program. The figure reached 100% in Vitebsk Oblast, Gomel Oblast, Grodno Oblast and Minsk, 78% in Minsk Oblast, and 94% in Mogilev Oblast.

— The vaccination of healthcare workers will be completed this week. Simultaneously with that, vaccines will be delivered to employees of educational institutions, care homes, nursing homes and social services.

 

GEORGIA

Location Confirmed Recovered Deaths
Georgia 264,158 256,024 3,321

 

Cases of COVID-19

— 2,094 patients are undergoing treatment in hospitals as of February 11. 471 of the 2,094 patients are in critical condition. 133 of the 471 critical patients are on artificial ventilation.

Measures to contain the epidemic

— Markets and public transport have resumed operations across Georgia starting February 8, however, will be closed on weekends due to Covid-19 restrictions. Public transport was not serving passengers due to the spread of the coronavirus since November 28, 2020.

Education

— Operations of schools, kindergartens and vocational and higher education institutions are planned to be resumed starting March 1.

Vaccine

About 14,000 individuals have been selected in Georgia to be vaccinated for coronavirus in the first stage and all of them are medical workers, announced on February 8 Head of the National Disease Control Centre Amiran Gamkrelidze. Vaccination will take place in the capital city of Tbilisi, the Black Sea resort town of Batumi and the western Georgian city of Kutaisi.

Economy

— Georgia’s healthcare system spent over 200 million GEL (about $60.2 million) on its Covid-19 response in 2020.

 

MOLDOVA

Location Confirmed Recovered Deaths
Moldova 166,553 154,956 3,589

 

Cases of COVID-19

— The pace of growth in coronavirus cases increased for the second week in a row. The average number of daily cases over a seven-day period now stands at 681, which is nearly 170 cases more compared to the same figure registered during the previous week.

— In terms of geographical distribution, Chisinau, with 42% of all confirmed cases, remains the most affected area in the country if the number of cases is considered. With 12% of all confirmed cases, the Transnistria region follows in the list of most affected areas.

Measures to contain the epidemic

— A state of emergency in Moldova remains in force until February 15 2021. Outdoor activities in the parks are banned and elderly people are allowed to leave homes only to buy food or medicine. Additionally, night clubs, theaters, and cinemas have to remain closed after 22:00. The country barred entry to foreigners and banned mass events. Wearing protective masks in public spaces is compulsory.

Vaccine

— First batches of COVID-19 vaccines will arrive in the Republic of Moldova in mid-February, namely 24,570 doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine and 264,000 doses of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine.

 

UKRAINE

Location Confirmed Recovered Deaths
Ukraine 1,258,094 1,098,944 24,058

 

COVID-19 cases

— The situation with the spread of the coronavirus in Ukraine has stabilized: the average weekly incidence indicators decreased three-fold, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky told to the press on February 8.

Measures to contain the epidemic

— Minister of Health Maksym Stepanov told the press on February 9 that there is no need to strengthen quarantine measures in Ukraine until April-May. “We are getting the desired result from these restraining factors of the current quarantine measures,” Stepanov said.

— Adaptive quarantine in Ukraine will be in effect from mid to late February, Deputy Minister, Chief State Sanitary Doctor Viktor Liashko told the press on February 9 in Kyiv. “We will offer the government a new ‘traffic light’ – zones of epidemic danger, which will exist in the country in mid-late February. There will be several zones – three or four,” he said. Liashko said that the key to the new adaptive quarantine would be the ability of the healthcare system to provide assistance.

Vaccine

— The vaccination in Ukraine has not started yet. At the end of last year, an agreement was concluded for the delivery of over 1.9 mln doses of a vaccine against the coronavirus by China’s Sinovac Biotech; the first 700,000 doses should arrive in February.

Bi-weekly update on the COVID-19 situation in the countries of the Eastern Partnership

Within EU-funded COVID-19 Solidarity Programme for the Eastern Partnership countries AFEW International prepares bi-weekly updates on the COVID-19 developments in the region (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine). 

You can now find all the updates in the COVID Corner on our website.

As of 26.01.2020
Regional overview

The number of coronavirus cases per population ratio since the start of the active phase of the pandemic (April 1) in the 6 countries of the EaP

Source: Sciences Po Media lab Coronavirus Country Comparator

ARMENIA

Location Confirmed Recovered Deaths
Armenia 166,232 155,404 3,052

 

Cases of COVID-19

— The numbers of coronavirus cases are going down in Armenia. Today is the first day since August with less than 60 infections.

Measures to contain the epidemic

— Armenia’s Ministry of Health reported on January 11 that for reducing the risk of spread of the coronavirus decease in Armenia the quarantine declared in the whole territory of the Republic will be extended for another six months – till July 11, 5 p.m.

Vaccine

— Vaccines will be purchased for 10% of the population in Armenia. The Ministry of Health has decided to buy the British AstraZeneca vaccine for 3% of the population in the first stage, it will be supplied until March 2021. The first phase of vaccination will prioritize people aged over 65, health workers and those who have underlying health conditions.

Education

— Schools in Armenia resumed in-person learning from December 7. Clinically vulnerable and 65+ employees of schools can work remotely. At-risk children will continue learning remotely.

AZERBAIJAN

Location Confirmed Recovered Deaths
Azerbaijan 229,358 221,116 3,100

 

Measures to contain the epidemic

— Azerbaijan will allow cafes and restaurants to open their doors to customers from February 1 but other coronavirus lockdown restrictions will be extended until April, the government said on January 23.

— Shopping malls will stay closed and the metro service in the capital Baku will remain suspended.

Vaccine

— The vaccination of the population in Azerbaijan started on Monday, January 18 after the country officially joined the global inoculation campaign. The country’s prime minister confirmed last week the national anti-COVID-19 vaccination strategy covering the period of 2021-2022. Inoculation in Azerbaijan is voluntary and government-sponsored. People who get vaccinated against COVID-19 in the country will receive a confirmation document, a “vaccine passport”. The country’s authorities opted for the CoronaVac vaccine manufactured by the Chinese Sinovac company, with an order placed for 4 million doses.

BELARUS

Location Confirmed Recovered Deaths
Belarus 239,482 224,925 1,668

 

Measures to contain the epidemic

— The Healthcare Ministry’s anti-coronavirus recommendations remain the same – social distancing, limiting face-to-face contact, avoiding crowds, wearing masks.

Vaccine

— Russia and Belarus are setting up a joint venture in Belarus to manufacture the Russian anti-coronavirus vaccine, Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin said on January 26 at talks with his Belarusian counterpart, Roman Golovchenko.

GEORGIA

Location Confirmed Recovered Deaths
Georgia 254,822 244,446 3,096

 

Measures to contain the epidemic

— Several coronavirus-related restrictions will be lifted in Georgia in February and in March, following a plan approved at the Interagency Coordination Council meeting on January 22:

Starting February 1:

Municipal transport, schools, shops and shopping centres will resume in Batumi, Zugdidi, Gori, Poti and Telavi.

Shops and shopping centres will be opened in Tbilisi, Kutaisi and Rustavi.

In the Adjara region it will be permitted to receive guests in open spaces and open food facilities, however restrictions on weddings, various social events or parties are still in force.

Starting February 15:

Open and closed markets will be opened in all cities of Georgia.

Starting March 1

Operations of schools, kindergartens and vocational and higher education institutions are planned to be resumed.

Municipal transport is also planned to restore operations.

What restrictions remain in force?

  • Restrictions on movement across the country remain in effect from 21:00 to 05:00 until 1 March
  • Municipal transport will not be available on weekends during February, while restaurants, food facilities and shops will operate only with a delivery service; produce markets, food and animal feed stores, pharmacies will continue to operate as usual, following the safety rules
  • Movement of the intercity transport will also be restricted
  • All other restrictions remain in force, including at ski resorts
  • Wearing face masks, managing customers’ flow and distance between them is mandatory and will be strictly monitored.

According to the Georgian Prime Minister, the full reopening of the economy will be possible if the community transmission rate drops below 4%.

— International flights will resume in Georgia starting February 1, Georgian Economy Minister Natia Turnava announced on January 22, stating that all airline companies that have already operated or plan to enter the country’s aviation market in the future will be able to operate regular flights.

Education

— School teachers who start teaching in person on February 1 will be tested for coronavirus by PCR before studies resume.

Vaccine

Georgia is planning to vaccinate 60 per cent of its adult population this year. The country is likely to receive Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines in the first quarter of 2021.

MOLDOVA

Location Confirmed Recovered Deaths
Moldova 156,426 147,178 3,368

 

Cases of COVID-19

— The growth in coronavirus cases remained relatively stable during the past week. The average number of daily cases over a seven-day period now stands at 478, which is only slightly less compared to the same figure registered during the previous week.

— The total number of active cases also decreased over the past week and the proportion of active cases in the total number of registered cases stands at 3.8%. The number of patients with coronavirus treated in hospitals is 2,110, out of which 221 are in very serious condition.

— The share of health care workers in the total number of cases continued to stand at around 9%. Approximately 14,500 doctors, nurses, medical assistants and other staff from the health care sector have been infected with the virus since the beginning of the outbreak.

— In terms of geographical distribution, Chisinau, with 42% of all confirmed cases, remains the most affected area in the country if the number of cases is considered. With 12% of all confirmed cases, the Transnistria region follows in the list of most affected areas.

Measures to contain the epidemic

— A state of emergency in Moldova remains in force until February 15 2021. Outdoor activities in the parks are banned and elderly people are allowed to leave homes only to buy food or medicine. Additionally, night clubs, theaters, and cinemas have to remain closed after 22:00. The country barred entry to foreigners and banned mass events. Wearing protective masks in public spaces is compulsory.

Vaccine

— The Republic of Moldova will receive COVID-19 vaccine for 20% of the population, which will be provided free of charge through the COVAX platform. Additionally, another 50% of the population will be immunised with vaccine doses obtained through procurements and donations. Romania announced its intention to grant the Republic of Moldova 200 000 doses of vaccine free of charge.

Education

— The number of schoolchildren infected with coronavirus has increased in Moldova. Currently, there are 68 classes in quarantine.

UKRAINE

Location Confirmed Recovered Deaths
Ukraine 1,197,107 965,835 22,057

 

Measures to contain the epidemic

Even though the official number of new COVID-19 cases has been decreasing for five weeks in a row, the Government of Ukraine announced another lockdown after the Orthodox Christmas celebration on 7 January until 25 January 2021 in an attempt “to reduce the burden on the healthcare facilities.” Only businesses and shops selling “essential” goods and services were open to the public as long as they followed COVID-19-related recommendations (e.g., pharmacies, grocery stores, gas stations, banks, post offices, healthcare providers, etc.). Starting from 25 January, Ukraine has reintroduced the quarantine restrictions that were applied before the introduction of the lockdown.

— The COVID-19 restrictive measures are implemented in cities and raions within oblasts in accordance with their risk levels. The adaptive quarantine currently in place has been extended until 28 February 2021.

Vaccine

— Ukraine expects to receive 100,000 to 200,000 doses of vaccines from Pfizer under the COVAX scheme in February and vaccinate the first 367,000 people against the coronavirus in the first stage, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmygal said on January 26.

~

Interesting reads

— Radio Free Europe: COVID-19 Crackdowns, Expanded Authoritarianism, And The Post-Pandemic World read.

— Agenda.de: One year of Covid-19 in Georgia: what are the stats? read.

— Bloomberg: Vaccine Is Now a Weapon in Ukraine’s Conflict With Russia read.

— VOA: Country Doctor in Ukraine Faces Coronavirus Challenges read.

COVID-19 Solidarity Program for the Eastern Partnership. The call is relaunched for Moldova!

On 3rd of September 2020 AFEW International has launched the regional “COVID-19 Solidarity Program in the Eastern Partnership countries” with the financial support of the European Union and in partnership with People in Need and the Netherlands Helsinki Committee. This project aims to support community based organizations (CBOs) to respond to the immediate and longer term impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Eastern Partnership countries.

In October AFEW International selected 8 proposals from 5 countries from the Eastern Partnership. Considering that in the 1st round, we have received insufficient number of applications from Moldova, we relaunch now the call for applications specifically for Moldova.

Eligibility criteria for the applicant

  • Applicant is a Community based organization (CBO) or represents the interests and needs of the following groups:
    • Sex workers
    • LGBTQI
    • Men who have sex with men (MSM)
    • Women vulnerable to HIV
    • Migrants
    • Adolescents and/or youth
    • People using drugs
    • People living with HIV (PLHIV)

Other target groups of the project are covered by the partner organizations.

  • Applicant is based in the Republic of Moldova.
  • Applicant is a registered CBO or – if not registered – provides references from partner organisations. COVID-19 Solidary Program for Eastern Partnership countries operational team shall be able to receive sufficient information about an applicant and can request information about applicant’s capacities from mentioned partners. An applicant can be a national or regional network. Proposals by individuals will not be taken into consideration for funding. Unregistered initiatives and groups if awarded a grant, need to find a reliable fiscal partner which can receive the  grant money through an international transfer.

How can CBOs apply

In order to apply, please follow these simple steps:

  • Fill out the application form. An application shall be submitted in English or Russian. The deadline for submitting the form is on 6 November 2020 at 17:00 CET (Amsterdam time). All proposals submitted after the deadline will not be reviewed!
  • Send this form to the following email address: covid19@AFEW.nl. Once submitted, you will receive an automated notification.
  • Wait for the decision of the Selection Commission regarding your application. The review of the applications will be done within 2 weeks after the deadline. The decisions will be announced on 20 November 2020.
  • If you have questions, please refer them to the above-mentioned email address or to Valeria Fulga: valeria_fulga@AFEW.nl.

More details about the call for applications  – here.

Application Form CoV-19 Solidarity Program – download.

Budget form download.

Bank details form download.

Helpful information about COVID-19. Continuously updated.

On this page you can find helpful information and verified resources about COVID-19.

The page is continuously updated

Resources:

UNAIDS

WHO – World Health Organization 

THE UNION – a global union to fight Tuberculosis

ASAM – American Society of Addiction Medicine

European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control

International Drug Policy Consortium

United Nations – Office on drugs and crimes

Life4me+ (a page with useful information)

World Hepatitis Alliance

IAS

Inter Agency Standing Committee

Johns Hopkins University 

IOM International (migrants)

 

The situation in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

Kazakhstan

Ministry of Health

A map with regions

Ukraine

Ministry of Health of Ukraine

National Health Service of Ukraine

Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine

Kyrgyzstan

Official website on Coronavirus

Website of the Ministry of Health of the Kyrgyz Republic

Republican Headquarters Telegram Channel to Prevent Coronavirus Infiltration

Republican Coronavirus Prevention Headquarters Facebook page

Republican Coronavirus Prevention Headquarters Instagram Page

Russia

Official website about Coronavirus

Moldova

A map with regions

Turkmenistan

Saglyk.org – credible public health information in the Turkmen language

 

Articles on topics:

Common info

Addressing Mental Health and Psychosocial Aspects of COVID-19 Outbreak

Source – https://interagencystandingcommittee.org

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) advice for the public: When and how to use masks

Fighting the COVID Infodemic

Source – https://www.project-syndicate.org/

Source – WHO

COVID-19 and People Who Live with HIV

COVID-19 Drug Interactions .  Source – www.covid19-druginteractions.org

EATG Rapid Assessment COVID-19 crisis’ Impact on PLHIV and on Communities Most Affected by HIV. Source – EATG

PEPFAR Technical Guidance in Context of COVID-19 Pandemic. Source – PEPFAR

Risk assessment and contingency planning tool for health systems functions and to ensure continuity of TB and HIV services . SourceCenter For Health Policies and Studies

A statement “Flatten inequality: human rights in the age of COVID-19” 

SourceCanadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network

No increased coronavirus risk for people with well-controlled HIV say WHO, but how will health systems cope?

Sourceaidsmap 

EATG Rapid Assessment COVID-19 crisis’ Impact on PLHIV and on Communities Most Affected by HIV

Source – European AIDS Treatment Group 

Q&A on COVID-19, HIV and antiretrovirals

Source – WHO

COVID-19 and People Living with HIV: Frequently Asked Questions

Source – HIV Medicine Association (HIVMA), Prevention Access Campaign, and partners

Resources on COVID-19 Support, Advocacy, Gender and HIV

Source – The Well Project

Lessons from HIV prevention for preventing COVID-19 in low- and middle-income countries

Source – UNAIDS

Condoms and lubricants in the time of COVID-19

Source – UNAIDS

The global impact of COVID-19 and strategies for mitigation and suppression

Source – Imperial College London, UK

The Potential Impact of the COVID-19 Epidemic on HIV, TB and Malaria in Low- and Middle-Income Countries

Source – Imperial College London, UK


COVID-19 and prisons

The International Corrections and Prisons Association  

Preparedness, prevention and control of COVID-19 in prisons and other places of detention.  Source – WHO

Interim Guidance. COVID-19: Focus on persons deprived of their liberty.

Source – IASC – Inter-Agency Standing Committee

Position Paper COVID-19 preparedness and responses in prisons

SourceUNODC

COVID-19 pandemic: urgent steps are needed to protect the rights of prisoners in Europe. Statement by Commissioner Dunja Mijatović.

SourceCouncil of Europe

 


COVID-19 and  People Who Use Drugs 

COVID-19 guidance for PWUD.  Source – www.harmreduction.org

Syringe Services and Harm Reduction Provider Operations During the COVID-19 Outbreak.

Source – www.harmreduction.org

How Harm Reducers Cope with the Covid-19 Pandemic in Europe?

Source – www.drogriporter.hu

Interim Guidance for COVID-19 and Persons with HIV. Source – www.aidsinfo.nih.gov

Information on the new virus, guidance for people living with HIV and answers to frequently asked questions from Dr Michael Brady

Source – www.tht.org.uk

Guidance for People Who Use Substances on COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus)

Sourcewww.inpud.net

Suggestions about treatment, care and rehabilitation of people with drug use disorder in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic

SourceUNODC

COVID-19 HIV prevention, treatment, care and support for people who use drugs

SourceUNODC

Reducing the Harms of a Broken System: Social Justice Demands During COVID-19

Sourcedrogriporter.hu

Statement by the UN expert on the right to health on the protection of people who use drugs during the COVID-19 pandemic

Sourceharmreductioneurasia.org

Harm Reduction Responses to COVID-19 in Europe

Source – drogriporter.hu


COVID-19 and Tuberculosis

COVID-19 Coronavirus And Tuberculosis: We Need A Damage Control Plan. Source – www.forbes.com.

New diseases and old threats: lessons from tuberculosis for the COVID-19 response.

Source – www.theunion.org.

WHO HQ Information note on TB and COVID 19

Source – WHO


COVID-19 and Hepatitis 

CLINICAL INSIGHTS FOR HEPATOLOGY AND LIVER TRANSPLANT PROVIDERS DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC

Source – AASLD – American Association for the study of Liver Diseases 

WHO HQ Q&A on COVID 19, HIV and antiretrovirals

Source – WHO


COVID-19 and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights

The COVID-19 Outbreak: Potential Fallout for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights.

Source – www.guttmacher.org


COVID-19 and youth

Youth guide

Source – www.dance4life.com


COVID-19 and SRHR 

SRHR and Gender

Source – Share-net International


COVID-19 and Sex workers

Sex workers’ response


COVID-19 and LGBT

What gay men can teach us about surviving the coronavirus

Source – www.theguardian.com


Reports from AIDS2020 

COVID-19 AND HIV: A TALE OF TWO PANDEMICS

Source – IAS


Other topics

How civil society helps to overcome COVID-19 pandemic effects in Ukraine

Source – https://euukrainecoop.com/

COVID-19 and prison health

On this page you can find helpful information and verified resources about COVID-19 and prison health.

The page is continuously updated

The International Corrections and Prisons Association (a verified resource)  

Worldwide Prison Health Research & Engagement Network (WEPHREN) (a verified resource)

Preparedness, prevention and control of COVID-19 in prisons and other places of detention. 

Source – WHO

Interim Guidance. COVID-19: Focus on persons deprived of their liberty.

Source – IASC – Inter-Agency Standing Committee

Position Paper COVID-19 preparedness and responses in prisons

SourceUNODC

COVID-19 pandemic: urgent steps are needed to protect the rights of prisoners in Europe. Statement by Commissioner Dunja Mijatović

SourceCouncil of Europe

Statement of principles relating to the treatment of persons deprived of their liberty

SourceCouncil of Europe

Coronavirus: Healthcare and human rights of people in prison

SourcePenal Reform International

Appeal by European NGOs involved in the field of prison health and in the defence of the right to health protection for prisoners

COVID-19 in prison: the Council of Europe must lead on policies to address the Covid-19 challenges

SourceCouncil of Europe

COVID-19: Council of Europe anti-torture Committee issues “Statement of principles relating to the treatment of persons deprived of their liberty”

SourceCouncil of Europe

COVID-19 population management strategy for prisons

Source – www.gov.uk

UNODC, WHO, UNAIDS and OHCHR joint statement on COVID-19 in prisons and other closed settings

Source – UNAIDS

PRI educational posters for criminal justice practitioners to reduce the spread of COVID-19

Source:  penalreform.org

Understanding COVID-19 in secure settings 

Infection prevention and control and surveillance for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in prisons in EU/EEA countries and the UK

COVID-19, Prisons and Drug Policy: Global Scan March-June 2020 

Source – https://www.hri.global/

ORGANISATION AND MANAGEMENT OF HEALTH CARE IN PRISON

Source – Council of Europe

 

EU launches the Call for Proposals “EU Solidarity with Russian Civil Society”

The European Union Delegation to Russia published the Call for Proposals “EU Solidarity with Russian Civil Society – Protecting vulnerable groups and disproportionately affected by COVID-19” with an overall budget of € 6 million.

The objective of this call is to enable Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) to function without interruptions at a time when their usual funding mechanisms are curtailed by the worsened economic situation, while ensuring continued and enhanced provision of services to the most vulnerable groups and those disproportionately affected by the pandemic.

COVID-19 is a worldwide public health emergency severely affecting citizens, societies and economies. The numbers of infections and confirmed cases worldwide is growing and socio-economic shocks are negatively affecting people’s incomes, physical and mental wellbeing, and the social integrity of communities as a whole. COVID-19 outbreak is adding pressure on the social service delivery systems, and exacerbating the vulnerabilities of affected populations, especially those who are in most need. 

Support through experienced CSOs is essential to ensure that these socio-economic impacts on vulnerable groups are mitigated. Yet, many CSOs are also severely affected by the COVID-19 crisis and the conduct of their important activities as well as their organisational survival is put at a high risk as donations drop.

Any grant requested under this call for proposals must fall between the minimum of € 400 000 and maximum of € 600 000 amounts. The maximum percentage of the EU grant must fall under 90 % of the total eligible costs of the action. Nevertheless, the grant may cover the entire eligible costs of the action if this is deemed essential to carry it out, subject to the justification of full financing by the applicant (Ref. to article 1.3 of the Guidelines for applicants).

If the applicant is from the Russian Federation, it may act individually. If the Applicant is not from the Russian Federation, presence of at least one Russian co-applicant is obligatory.

The deadline for submission of Concept Notes is Monday, June 29, 2020.

More information for CSOs to apply for project funding is available at EuropeAid/168597/DH/ACT/RU . To apply to this call for proposals organisations must register in PADOR and submit their application in PROSPECT.  

Clarification requests and questions may be sent by e-mail no later than June 08, 2020 to the following e-mail address, indicating clearly the reference of the Call for proposals: 

NEAR-TENDER-168597@ec.europa.eu

We do our best to provide services

Ivan Anoshkin, coordinator of the street social work of NGO “Project April” (Tolyatti, Russia) talks about harm reduction activities of his organization at COVID-19 time.

For reference:

“Project April’ works in harm reduction. The main key groups are people who inject drugs and sex workers, but with changes on the drug scene and the emergence of different stimulants and salts, the organization got new client groups, particularly people practicing Chemsex. The organization employs 18 people and also has a large number of volunteers. “Project April” is recognized in Russia as a foreign agent.

Difficulties caused by COVID-19

Before the spread of the COVID-19 and the lockdown related to it, we used to receive our clients at our office every weekday. Anyone could come to get a consultation, HIV test or a harm reduction kit. We have always tried to provide the conditions for talking with our clients in a warm, comfortable atmosphere. Once the self-isolation regime was first introduced in Tolyatti in March, we had to completely close our office. However, seeing that after a few weeks it became clear that this regime could be extended over and over again, we decided that as a social organization, we cannot interrupt our activities indefinitely. Since then, one of the employees is in the office every working day to insure the provision of our regular services “on the spot”. Yet evidently, it is no longer possible for us to invite our clients to chat with them over a cup of tea, for the sake of their and our safety. Therefore, we are trying to provide our services at entrance.

Our work is largely focused on outreach and street work and in the current situation, this has had to be significantly reduced as well. For example, our employee went to a gay club every week where she developed trust relations with its visitors and maintained contacts with the community. With everything closed, this channel of communication is lost and this could negatively affect our current and potential clients. Finally, another significant obstacle that limits our activities during the crisis is a fear to cause more troubles to our clients by attracting unnecessary police attention to them.

Innovations

Under these circumstances, we have partially switched our activities to online. We are holding our work meetings on Skype. The visits we would do to rehabilitation centres every 1-2 months, we have also temporarily transferred to online. We agreed with administration of these centers to pre-deliver them brochures and HIV self-tests, and to organise our seminar via Skype afterwards. This way, patients have an opportunity to get tested and to get immediate information and support, even in these dark times.

What is more, to our clients we started to send and deliver harm reduction kits, HIV self–tests, and, if necessary, packages with basic products and goods. Basically, we already know places where our clients continue to gather. So we deliver our kits and packages there directly, based on their precise needs. For our employees, volunteers and active participants who continue to work, we purchase masks, gloves and disinfectants.

In times of crisis like this, our clients have more demand for social and psychological support as well. For this purpose, we have a service taxi that allows our employees to come to clients to provide social assistance and products of first necessity. And if necessary, we also deliver ARV therapy to clients, with their written agreement.

Certainly, due to the self-isolation regime and the hostile atmosphere in general, the number of new clients decreases, but not as significantly as we had feared. When you have already been working with harm reduction for this many years, the members of community know you. And we should also not underestimate the power of the word of mouth, that stays efficient at all times. Even now, newcomers visit our office at the recommendation of our clients.

What’s next?

This crisis has shown us how important it is to keep in touch with our clients not only live, but online as well. This way we stay in permanent contact. Hence, in the future we are hoping to have a possibility to hire a person whose work will be devoted only to managing social media and maintaining contact with our client through messengers on a regular basis.

We also really hope to offer some financial compensation to our employees, who continue to “work in the field” at their own peril and risk, especially as some of them – as I do – have a fairly low CD4 level.

Global Prison Trends 2020

Penal Reform International released a document Global Prison Trends 2020.
Global Prison Trends 2020 documents the chronic issues that have led to this human rights and public health crisis and the challenges facing criminal justice systems in responding to the global pandemic.

The report documents a record 11 million people in prison worldwide, with over 124 prisons exceeding their maximum occupancy rate. Global Prison Trends shows how this increase in numbers is driven by a punitive approach to criminal justice where more costly prison sentences are favoured over non-custodial alternatives.
The overcrowding and underfunding of prisons, alongside the overuse of imprisonment, has resulted in poor health services and sanitary conditions for prisoners that make people in prison and prison staff acutely vulnerable to COVID-19.
The special focus of Global Prison Trends 2020 identifies the solution presented by increasing the use of alternatives to imprisonment and the challenges governments may face in implementing this. PRI advocates for an increase in the use of alternatives to detention as a solution to the global prison crisis and in the long-term to reduce reoffending rates, better protect human rights and tackle overcrowding.

Global Prison Trends 2020 explores the following subjects:
– Crime, justice and imprisonment
– Trends in the use of imprisonment, including the funding of penitentiary systems
– Prison populations such as women, children, older persons and minority groups
– Prison management including the provision of health services
– The role and use of technology in prison
– A special focus on alternatives to imprisonment

Read the document

Executive-Summary-GPT-English

How COVID-19 quarantine measures affect LGBT community NGOs working in the field of HIV prevention

Eurasian Coalition on Health, Rights, Gender and Sexual Diversity  (ECOM) published a report on how the COVID-19 epidemic affects the work of LGBT organizations working on HIV prevention and support in the CEECA region.

In April 2020, ECOM conducted a rapid situation assessment to determine how the COVID-19 epidemic and related quarantine measures affect LGBT NGOs working in the field of HIV prevention and on other sexual health issues in Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia (CEECA).
The organization sought to find out how the work of NGOs has changed due to quarantine measures; to what extent do organizations have the resources to survive in emergency situations; what are they doing to ensure the safety of their clients and staff; and what do they feel is important to do in the future in order to reduce the risks associated with epidemics similar to COVID-19.
33 respondents from 25 cities in 11 CEECA countries participated in the assessment.

The assessment showed that many community organizations in the region have stopped offline work with clients (19 of the 33 respondents participating in the assessment). For 54% of organizations, the number of clients in the first month of quarantine fell by more than half.

In the first month after the introduction of restrictive measures, organizations most often reduced HIV and STI testing services – 39% and 30% of respondents respectively. 27% of respondents reduced the provision of condoms and lubricants, and another 24% curtailed counseling and support services on various issues (in connection with HIV testing and prevention, and psychological support for various subgroups, including PLH).

Only less than half (48%) of respondents stated that their organizations feel confident in the current environment. A significant number fear that if quarantine is extended, they will have to start laying off employees. Some have already begun cutting salaries or the number of staff, while 6% have completely stopped operating.

Nevertheless, the majority of organizations are continuing to operate and are looking for ways to adapt to conditions under quarantine. The main area for adaptation entails transferring services online. Work in this area began a long time ago; before the quarantine, half of the organization surveyed already covered 50% or more of their clients with online services. The primary service offered to clients online is various forms of counseling. All respondents noted the importance of developing various kinds of online and contactless services, including support and education services, and the delivery of ARV therapy drugs to clients’ homes.

Respondents proposed measures to increase the sustainability and security of organizations, for example, by abandoning large, common spaces in offices, forming mini-teams of employees whose working hours do not overlap, or by arranging client reception via appointment only. In addition, respondents consider it important to take into account the administrative and programmatic risks associated with epidemics similar to COVID-19 when planning their work and budget, and to develop the coordination of work with local medical institutions and administrations, as well as with international organizations.

Read the report here