Project 167/2010 - "Act together" - people with disabilities in civil society in Belarus, 2010

The Project was co-financed by the Polish development cooperation programme 2010 of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland.

The main goal of the project was to improve the quality of life of persons with disabilities and ensure their active participation in the development of civil society in Belarus.

The amount of the actual expenditure of MFA grant:    PLN 242,050.38
The down payment and financing from other sources: PLN 124,291.50

The completed project envisaged the cooperation of several organizations to show common support people with disabilities: EAST Foundation, "Sisters of Mercy" Sisterhood, the Association of People with Multiple Sclerosis, Sheltered Workshop "Furniture House". The combination of the efforts of various organizations aimed at improving the quality of life of people with disabilities and provide them to actively participate in the construction of civil society in Belarus.

As part of the project, according to the plan, the following results were achieved:

1. Exchange of experience between organizations working with disabled people in Poland and Belarus.

Study visits forwarded experience in the conduct of kitchen furniture production plant, plant performance cabinetry and door furniture, the design studio. Also shown is an example of the system supply and installation directly from customers. During the next visit passed the knowledge and experience of working equipment and sound recording studios, and the last study visit was to demonstrate how the work of NGOs working for disabled people.

2. The modernization of sheltered workshop.

Special work has been completely redesigned. Transformed from a small manufactory (working in a room not much bigger than a garage, very crudely equipped and producing quite simple furniture) in a medium-sized, modern facilities, well-sheltered workshop employing people with disabilities. It was established a number of workshops that allow for a full cycle of production of furniture made to order (from design to installation on the client). The project also contributed directly to increased competitiveness and boosting the overall financial stability of the sheltered workshop.

3. Creating a communication center for the disabled.

As a result of this part of the project established communication center for people with disabilities, including their effect social support and cultural development: the theater and studio recordings for people with disabilities. Creating a center of communication has enabled people with disabilities to enjoy activities rehabilitation, medical and vocational training, greater access to information, etc.. Positive effect on raising activities with disabled people in cultural, media, creates opportunities for further development of cultural and artistic cooperation with people of culture, artists, and finally enables the presentation of its performance and achievements to a wider audience.

Expected long-term results:
Sheltered workshop activities and a communication significantly affected the fight against social exclusion of people with disabilities. Jointly funded project also allowed non-governmental organizations (especially working with people with disabilities) to improve the quality and scope of their work. It was a positive experience, which may in the future affect the broader cooperation in the Belarusian NGOs.