ECOM — Eurasian Coalition on Health, Rights, Gender and Sexual Diversity in partnership with the organizations “Aidsfonds” (Netherlands) and ICF “Alliance for Public Health” (Ukraine) is implementing a program aimed at reducing the negative impact of the Russian war against Ukraine on the access of key populations (KP) to HIV services and humanitarian assistance in the region of Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia (CEECA).
The program includes the provision of grants to support initiatives of communities of KP aimed at ensuring the access of KP to HIV-related services, protecting the rights of KP, overcoming discrimination and stigmatization, as well as at ensuring the access of KP to humanitarian assistance.
As part of this program, ECOM is announcing a call for proposals for organizations and unregistered initiative groups led by communities of KP, vulnerable to HIV, in CEECA countries (except Ukraine).
TRACKS SUPPORTED UNDER THE CALL FOR PROPOSALS:
- Self-organization of communities in migration
- Providing services for key populations in migration
- Removing political barriers to the “legalization” of migrants affected by HIV and their access to social or health services
- Establishing and/or maintaining measures to amend and/or mitigate the impact of existing laws and procedures, and to respond to new legislative initiatives that contribute to harassment and discrimination against people living with HIV and key populations
WHO MAY SUBMIT PROPOSALS:
As part of this call, ECOM invites proposals from community-based non-governmental organizations and initiative groups of key population communities from the following countries of Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia:
Azerbaijan, Armenia, Estonia, Georgia, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan.
The call for proposals will give priority to community-led non-governmental organizations and initiative groups.
Activities within the Fund, aimed at supporting key populations in Ukraine, is carried out by the ICF “Public Health Alliance”. Additional information at the link.
Programs operating in Russia and Belarus are not supported under this competition.
BENEFICIARIES OF THE GRANTS COMPETITION:
- People living with HIV (PLHIV) and people affected by tuberculosis;
- Trans people;
- LGBT people and men who have sex with men (MSM);
- Sex workers;
- People who use drugs (PWUD);
- Women living with HIV;
- People with disabilities.
Proposals that include intersectional work with different KP are welcome.
Proposed projects may include (but are not limited to) the following activities aimed at representatives of key populations who have found themselves in migration as a result of the Russian war against Ukraine:
1) Self-organization of communities in migration
- Organizational development of KPs, including NGO registration, development of statutory documents, etc.;
- Capacity building of KPs for with KPs in migration;
- Needs assessment as a tool for advocacy;
- Collection of data on stigma, discrimination and human rights violations;
- Advocacy activities, including media campaigns, working meetings, etc.;
- Educational activities, including with decision-makers (seminars, workshops, trainings, development of training manuals, etc.).
2) Providing services for key populations in migration
HIV services and other healthcare services
- Ensuring that KP who are migrating as a result of the war have access to HIV services, including case management and outreach, referrals;
- Community-led monitoring;
- Procurement of hormonal drugs for hormone therapy for transgender people;
- Increasing access of KP to other friendly healthcare services: informational services, referrals, organization of counseling: for example, on medical research, mental health, substance abuse, reproductive health.
Mental health and combating violence
- Provision of emergency psychological assistance services;
- Assistance for victims of physical, sexual, psychological, emotional and other kind of violence, etc.;
- Organization of and/or support for the work of shelters;
- Organization of rehabilitation camps (socio-psychological rehabilitation) for representatives of KP and their families;
- Prevention of violence: self-defense courses, mini-trainings on what to do in dangerous situations.
- Services for finding and providing temporary housing for KP who are migrants;
- Assistance in finding employment: consultations with professional recruitment agencies, professional retraining, organization of professional courses (IT, design, etc.) with subsequent employment;
- Services for legal support for the restoration of identity documents for KP who are migrants.
Meeting urgent needs of KP and their families
- Purchase of food, food certificates; purchase of medicines; purchase of clothes and hygiene products.
3) Removing political barriers to the “legalization” of migrants affected by HIV and their access to social or health services
- community-led monitoring;
- collection and systematization of data on access to social or health services in the host country;
- analysis of existing political barriers that prevent the “legalization” of migrants and subsequent advocacy to eliminate them;
- informing the representatives of the KPs about the legislation and procedures of the host country and their participation in the advocacy of changes.
4) Establishing and/or maintaining measures to amend and/or mitigate the impact of existing laws and procedures, and to respond to new legislative initiatives that contribute to harassment and discrimination against people living with HIV and key populations
- reviewing legislation and procedures that promote harassment and discrimination against people living with HIV and key populations, and advocating for change;
- creation of intersectoral coalitions of the KPs of the population and other vulnerable groups, with the aim of mitigating the impact of existing laws and procedures, as well as responding to new legislative initiatives;
- conducting campaigns at the national level to mitigate the impact of existing laws and procedures, as well as responding to new legislative initiatives.
The following types of activities will not be funded:
- Individual participation in seminars, conferences;
- Subcontracting other organizations to carry out activities (other than fiduciary agents of unregistered initiative groups — see below).
GRANT PERIOD AND BUDGET
Small grants up to €7,000 for a period of 1.5 months to 3 months with one reporting period starting 1 July 2023 for:
- Track 1 (self-organization of communities in migration).
Medium grants up to €20,000 for a period of 3 months to 6 months with two reporting periods starting 1 July 2023 for:
- Track 2 (provision of services for key populations in migration (including humanitarian support, support for individual cases, expansion of harm reduction and other programs relevant to key populations)).
- Track 3 (eliminating political barriers to the “legalization” of migrants affected by HIV, and their access to social or health services).
- Track 4 (initial funding to counter laws and procedures that create a repressive environment for people living with HIV and key populations).
In 2018, AFEW International and Aidsfonds launched Emergency Support Fund for Key Populations in the EECA region (ESF). It strived for a comprehensive response to emergencies threatening HIV service provision for key populations in the EECA region and supported activities ranging from advocacy and prevention to treatment and care in terms of HIV and co-infections. After 3 years of fruitful work, in July 2021 ESF was closed.
Since its start, ESF has received about 600 applications from 10 countries in EECA: Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan and some other countries of the region, f which over 230 were funded. For many organisations this support mechanism helped to overcome funding gaps and ensure continuity in emergency situations, especially in the countries where space for civil society initiatives continues to shrink due to local legislation changes.