Through the work of five charities operating in Russia, vulnerable people are able to receive health care support and treatment as well as assistance in instances of abuse and exploitation. Here is information about these five charities operating in Russia.
5 Charities Operating in Russia
- INGI. Crisis Centre for Women. This nonprofit organization was established in 1992 in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Its main goal is to support women who are victims of several types of violence, discrimination and human trafficking in Russia. According to France24, “Russia in 2017 decriminalized certain forms of domestic violence, classifying them as an administrative offense and not a crime.” The organization provides psychological help for women who have suffered from abuse; interacts with state and local authorities; draws attention to women’s rights through media; creates and carries out women’s rights lectures and seminars; organizes charity auctions and events to raise money and offers legal support in court, among other efforts. From January to August 2022, the INGI. Crisis Centre received 5,346 requests from women in need and 3,660 people requested online consultation services. In addition, 126,148 women used the “P.O.L.I.N.A” platform (a tool that helps women access essential services and assistance) and the organization provided 345 instances of legal advisory services.
- Podari Zhizn. This charity foundation helps to ensure child cancer patients in Russia are able to access high-quality cancer treatment regardless of economic status. Podari Zhizn pays the costs of treatment for children with “oncological, hematological and other challenging conditions and illnesses,” its website says. Also, the foundation supplies medical facilities with equipment, medication and blood donations. When it comes to families with ill kids, the organization pays for transportation and accommodation expenses and offers legal and psychological support. In 2021 alone, the foundation provided assistance to almost 7,750 young patients. Podari Zhizn has two partner organizations, in the U.S. and the U.K.
- EVA. Established in Saint Petersburg in 2010 by activists, the EVA Association became the first organization in Russia to focus its efforts toward “[protecting] women who are affected by the HIV epidemic and other socially significant diseases.” The EVA Association brings together “63 activists and specialists and [five] non-commercial organizations from 39 cities across Russia.” In Russia, there are more than 500,000 HIV-positive women. And, many members of EVA are also navigating through life with HIV. All donor funds are spent on programs: “the breastfeeding support program for HIV-positive mothers, HIV prevention among drug users [and] the center for the development of activism,” the EVA website says. Over the years EVA has implemented more than 50 projects in the areas of peer counseling, HIV testing and prevention, parenting and “development of nonprofits and activism.”
- Lighthouse Charity Foundation. This Foundation was founded by Nyuta Federmesser and Lida Moniava in 2018 to support “children’s hospices in Moscow and the Moscow Region.” It also offers help and assistance to those families who decide to “transfer critically ill children to their homes” for care. On an annual basis, Lighthouse Charity Foundation projects support around 1,000 families whose kids suffer from critical illnesses. The Foundation consists of more than 300 professionals and 300 volunteers. In 2021, its budget stood at 950 million rubles — only 20% came from government funding and 80% came from donations “from ordinary citizens.” In 2022, the Foundation raised about 896 million rubles but still requires 960 million rubles considering it has 811 children receiving its care services.
- Hospice Charity Fund VERA. This nonprofit operating in Russia since 2006 supports the provision of “palliative and hospice care for children, adults and elderly.” Unfortunately, the “Russian state medical and social system does not cover care” for patients with terminal illnesses, VERA explains. Hospices receive support through charitable contributions only. Back in 2006, VERA had just four employees and one institution it supported. Over 16 years, VERA has contributed to developments in professional palliative care in Russia and now has more than 60 employees providing support to more than 30 hospices around the country.
These five charities operating in Russia, though not the only ones in existence, play a significant role in helping the most marginalized and vulnerable groups of people requiring aid and assistance.
– Elizaveta Medvedkina