Serbia: Social Inclusion and Protection

PIN has a long history of supporting people with disabilities and transforming social service provision in the Balkans and southern Europe where people with disabilities share common challenges and face similar obstacles. Many countries in this region share a legacy of Soviet-influenced social policies which focus on segregated, state-run institutionalised care. As such, PIN has been working to translate positive experience gained in the Czech Republic to other countries and contexts in south-east Europe, including Serbia.

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Past aid programmes

Transformation of the system of services for disabled persons

Transformation of the system of services for disabled persons

Within the effort of integration of persons with disabilities into society, People in Need supported the transformation of the residential institution for people with intellectual disabilities in Veliki Popovac. In cooperation with the Centre for Support of the Transformation, PIN arranged a set of educative workshops. During these workshops, the residential institution staff was provided with the information about the methods of individual planning and individual assistance service, as well as with the experience from transformation process in the Czech Republic. As the results of the workshops, the staff has mapped needs of 190 clients, and they have started to create the individual plans together with the clients. People in Need supported 20 people with intellectual disabilities who moved out of the residential institution, and began to use three newly established services in the community. The clients also joined the non-formal education; they had the possibility to choose from a variety of courses such as: literacy classes, a course for cleaning ladies, a course of handiwork, a course for the hairdressers’ assistants, etc. The newly gained knowledge helped them to find employment. Out of these 20 clients, seven of them have already got a job, and two of them are active as volunteers in the local community. People in Need put strong attention on supporting people who attempt to re-gain the legal capacity. In most cases people were deprived of the legal capacity while entering the residential institution, which means that they couldn’t decide about their own life at the time. Within the cooperation with the residential institution in Veliki Popovac, the documentary movie and methodical booklet were created and now help other residential institutions in Serbia as a handbook while establishing the independent living services.

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