Take Care project

Brief project information: The project TAKE CARE – Integrated social and heath services for vulnerable population in Western Balkans is funded by  the Austrian Federal Ministry of Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection implemented by the project partners Caritas Austria, Macedonian Caritas, Civic association for assistance of homeless, socially marginalized families and individuals KINDNESS and Roma Democratic Development Association SONCE as part of the regional programme „Tackling the impact of COVID-19 crises“ – Western Balkan Countries (AL, BiH, MKD, SER)

Project duration:  1st July 2021 till 31st of December 2022 (18 months)

Overall project budget:  201.845 EUR

Project description: The targeted groups will receive integrated psychosocial services that otherwise they will have very limited access to – or no access at all. These services will be tailor-made to the particular needs of each individual and will include technical advice and escorting through the institutions for obtaining access to social transfers, assistance and support in opening bank accounts for receiving social transfers or other type of payments, paralegal assistance for realization of the social rights guaranteed by the state, basic medical check and assistance including provision of medications, prevention and assistance in resolving of housing issues including covering of the rent for a limited period of time. All these services should significantly improve socio-economic and the health situation of the targeted groups during the COVID-19 crisis.

Additionally, through the project life, the targeted beneficiaries will also receive educational support and trainings on essential life skills that will improve the prospects of the targeted groups to overcome intergenerational poverty. In particular, children (6-15) from poor and socially excluded families will receive educational support to attend online classes as well as to finalize their school year successfully.

Particular attention through the project activities will be payed to counselling service for the women and girls who might be facing increased domestic violence as a consequence of the COVID-19 crisis, along with job loss due to increased burden for caring for the children during the closure of the kindergartens and the schools in the pandemic, as well as with the risks they traditionally face in the Roma communities like school dropout and early marriages.  All these educational activities, targeting children together with their parents, should contribute towards overcoming intergenerational poverty among the poor and in the traditionally marginalized and excluded social groups and minority communities.

 

Target groups: Vulnerable groups such as:

– Poor people and people at high risk of poverty and social exclusion

– Homeless people and people at high risk of becoming homeless

– Children and teenagers at risk to drop out from school

– Women and girls from vulnerable groups such as Roma

Activities:

Pilar 1: Intergrated legal, health and social services

1.1. Social services Program- Through mobile social and legal teams the project offers a set of social services directly to the homes of economically and socially disadvantaged families and individuals; providing them with support to access and claim their social rights.

1.2. Mobile Basic Medical Services Program- The project offers basic mobile medical services to the homes of the people living in poor and socially excluded communities, thus enabling them to access the public healthcare system.

1.3 Integrated Housing Services Program- this activity includes not only housing for the homeless but also preventive measures for people at risk of becoming homeless and monitoring of the beneficiaries to develop personal living habits and managing personal finances. Moreover, the development of a concept to assist people at risk of becoming homeless with debts/income managing/advice and an assisted bank account.

Pilar 2: Intergenerational Poverty Risk Reduction Program

2.1 Education Support Services- afterschool support for children in Shuto Orizari

(homework, educational workshops, learning basic competences, vocational orientation)

2.2 Life skills development program- dissemination of crucial life skills (health, hygiene, communication, etc.) to poor vulnerable socially excluded people with focus on thematic counseling services including topics of good parenting, hygiene, communication etc.

2.3 Coordination, awareness raising and dissemination- developed concepts and methodologies as well as lessons learned by the project will be available for the relevant national stakeholders.

Cross-cutting topic: In the delivery of the projects services, particular attention will be payed to women and girls. Integrated counseling will include the topics of life-long consequences of early marriages, the importance of good parenting, preventing and coping with the domestic violence, and the importance of education.

Relevant stakeholders:

–           Austrian Federal Ministry of Social Affairy, Helath, care and Consumer Protection

–           Ministry of Labor and Social Policy of North Macedonia

–           Local Self- Governments: City of Skopje and local municipalities on the territory of Skopje, Shuto Orizari, Tetovo, Jegunovce and Tearce

–           Centers for Social Work in Skopje and Tetovo

–           Primary schools in Shuto Orizari

–           Health institutions in the project regions

–           private companies (projected: Sparkasse Macedonia, EVN)

–           Other NGOs involved in the fields of the projects interventions