The BEARR Trust Small Grants Scheme 2009

Grants were awarded as follows, under each segment of the scheme:

A. Helping the homeless reintegrate into society

The Institute of Practice Lawyers, Samara, for a project bringing together all active NGOs and relevant local authority departments to look at a more comprehensive way of helping ex-offenders, migrant workers, refugees and other marginalised groups in the region get better support in health, housing and employment.

Caritas, Moscow, for the purchase of 100 single-use cameras to be distributed around hostels for the homeless with offers of food in exchange for a completed film. With the best pictures they will organise four exhibitions of the best photos of life on the streets, in an attempt to improve understanding of homeless people and change negative attitudes towards them.

Kitezh will also continue to receive its ongoing grant to support students in further education from the Kitezh orphan village.

This segment of the scheme is sponsored by the law firm Baker Botts.

B. Relieving the distress of human trafficking

Votum, Odessa, Ukraine, for developing cooperation between governmental structures and NGOs in Odessa, educating police, other specialists and the public at large in trafficking issues and creating experience exchange groups for dealing with this complex issue. Odessa being a port works not only with local women but the many passing through, either on their way in or out of the country.

C. Changing attitudes to disability

The Promise, Ryazan, for a final train-the-trainers 2 day workshop, and the translation of the last 5 modules into Russian, for their project to introduce Portage (more details of this practice in the next BEARR newsletter) , which is now a part of the social work training for disabilities curriculum.

Hope and Health, Chisinau, Moldova, for cooking lessons for people with mental disabilities to teach them greater independence in life. These skills will also assist by freeing their carers from some domestic duties so that they can go to work.

New Life, Konotop, Ukraine, for seminars as part of a public awareness campaign centred on the talents and contribution of disabled people to society. By training volunteers to seek out individual stories and make 5 video films looking at their achievements, they aim to reduce the stigma of disability and further a more positive public attitude towards disability.

This last segment of the scheme is sponsored by Q’straint, manufacturers of seatbelts for wheelchair-users.

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