Successful completion of projects under the Covid grant scheme

Yesterday we celebrated the results of successfully completed projects within the Covid grant scheme in Vrnjačka banja. The projects were implemented during and after the pandemic, and their goal was to provide information of public importance, advocate changes in regulations and help citizens overcome this difficult period as painlessly as possible and fight for their rights. During the previous two years, within the framework of two grant schemes, 23 projects from all over Serbia were supported.

Those present were addressed by Biljana Đusić Radmilović on behalf of SDC, Snežana Mišić Mihajlović on behalf of the ACT project and Helvetas and Katarina Đukić on behalf of Civic Initiatives. They recalled the most significant results, the importance of networking and collaboration within the ACT community. It was pointed out that during the implementation of the first Covid grant scheme in 2021, which concerned monitoring the work of institutions, advocacy and information, for the first time within the framework of the Act, the media were included in addition to civil society organizations, and that a total of 197,638 citizens benefited from the activities on these projects, while the coverage of the citizens reached by the information that they placed reached 2 million. In the second Covid support 2022 related to advocacy, the number of people who benefited from advocacy initiatives reached 228,742. During the introductory speeches, the proposal of the Law on emergency aid was singled out, which is a parliamentary procedure and which, if adopted, will have an impact on the lives of all citizens of the Republic of Serbia. Therefore, the “Right to Life Mary” project, from a local initiative, reached the national framework and was the subject of discussion after the introductory speeches as an example of good practice of how an advocacy initiative should run.

Also on this occasion, the Mental Health Protection Network, which resulted from these activities, was presented. Some of the most significant cumulative results are: – Through the online counseling center, 500 people received psychological support. – Recommendations were made for the protection and improvement of citizens’ mental health during the pandemic. – 225 media contents about the pandemic were published. – 11 advocacy initiatives were launched. – The research Public at a distance / Democracy in crisis, Analysis of planning procedures during the pandemic period was conducted. – In addition, 15 other analyses, researches and surveys were carried out. – 4 training sessions were held for teachers in 23 schools. – A total of 44 radio formats were broadcast in the form of podcasts. – A total of 247 requests for access to information of public importance were sent to health institutions – In March 2021, the “United Against Covid” association launched the “Vaccine yourself” campaign. This campaign was also an occasion for other civil society organizations and media representatives to gather.