We are still following the COVID-19 situation in the region. What we have noticed is that significant focus is placed on the effects of the disease, where psychological help is vital.
The following stories discuss this particular kind of help, which is still crucial in mitigating the effects of COVID-19, and introduce us to those who are sensitized to this issue and are able to help.
Capital City of Podgorica provided free psycho-social support to citizens
Podgorica Mayor Ivan Vuković and his associates have opened the ‘House of Health’, a new free social service for citizens who need psycho-social support. The idea for launching this service was born out of the belief that the care for both physical and mental health is extremely important for a healthy and productive life, as reported by the Mayor’s Office.
The mission of the House of Health is to improve the quality of life, eliminate or mitigate risk, and to provide support to citizens facing various problems, with a focus on socially vulnerable groups.
It has further been noted that the period marked by the pandemic, as well as the effects on the overall health of the population, the feelings of fear and uncertainty, have further motivated the Capital City of Podgorica to provide this type of support to its citizens.
“There’s always been a need for such a service, and this difficult period that we’ve all been going through for over a year has further emphasized it. It is with great pleasure that we are today signing the Memorandum of Cooperation with three non-governmental organizations: Association of Psychologists of Montenegro, CAZAS and Centre for Children's Rights Montenegro. The House of Health will gather psychologists, medical doctors working in services, bodies and public institutions of the Capital City, as well as in said non-governmental organizations”, said Vuković.
CEDIS donated EUR 13,600 to Kotor Hospital
CEDIS (the Electric Power Distribution System of Montenegro) donated a total of EUR 13,600 to Kotor General Hospital, on the occasion of its fifth anniversary. The funds were used for the purchase of a gas analyzer, which is necessary for the proper care of patients suffering from COVID-19, as noted in CEDIS’ statement.
As stated, the donation is another proof of CEDIS’ social responsibility, strong commitment and partner relation with healthcare institutions in Montenegro.
At the event organized on the occasion of awarding the donation, CEO Vladimir Čađenović emphasized the strong commitment of the management of one of the largest and most successful companies in Montenegro to supporting the health sector, not in short-term but continuously and strategically, so that healthcare institutions could count on CEDIS as a reliable and always present partner.
Single database of COVID-19 related needs and information
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, the Serbian Philanthropy Forum and B92 Fund have been recognized as relevant intermediaries between the donors and the needs of healthcare institutions and local organizations. Since March 2020, owing to the engagement of their members as well as the entire philanthropic community, the Serbian Philanthropy Forum and B92 Fund have raised more than RSD 200 million in money and over RSD 10 million in goods for the support to the healthcare system of the Republic of Serbia in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. It is important to note that this makes up 10% of the total amount donated in Serbia since the beginning of the pandemic.
The experiences gained throughout the pandemic have pointed to the need for a single virtual space for information gathering, in the form of a web platform that would be a place for exchanging information and experiences, for learning about the pandemic, and most importantly – for mediation, a sort of stock market of needs and projects related to mitigating the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Experiences in cooperation with the members of the Serbian Philanthropy Forum, including foundations, corporate foundations, companies and civil society organizations, and in cooperation with the wider philanthropic community in Serbia tell us that the existence of such an informative and interactive web platform would enable a faster and more efficient response and handling of urgent issues caused by the current pandemic on one hand, and on the other, it would allow companies and donors insight into relevant needs thus influencing the systemic character of investments.
The database is currently under development and we expect it will be launched by fall.
Great interest of companies and individuals for charity ball
The Center for Media Transparency and Social Responsibility has stated that, only a month after the announcement of the Women’s Solidarity Front charity ball, 84 companies and individuals have already responded to this call for donations and payments have already been made to the dedicated account. Namely, the ball will be organized at the Vranje City Park on August 20, where funds will be raised for children who lost one or both of their parents to COVID-19.
The charity ball, with the red carpet, lanterns and music, will be organized at the anniversary of the death of Diana Budisavljević, who saved thousands of Serbian, Jewish and Roma children from the horrors of NDH camps. On the occasion of the ball as the central event, Vranje will also get the first mural in Serbia dedicated to Diana Budisavljević, which is also a donation from individuals who responded to the invitation. Our idea is not to compare the efforts of the Women’s Solidarity Front with her heroism and sacrifice, but our goal is the same: to provide support to children who were forced to grow up too early – said the members of the Women’s Solidarity Front.
At the ball, goods and services, as well as food and drinks will be sold at symbolic prices, while boxes will be placed for direct donations. Some of the vouchers that will be available for purchase include gym memberships, hairdressing and beauty services, food, drinks, furniture, clothes, accessories, footwear, books, perfumes, etc. Visitors will also be able to buy vouchers for medical examinations, lab analyses, as well as to purchase paintings of famous local artists at a much lower price.
The Women’s Solidarity Front will transfer all raised funds to children whose parents died of COVID-19. “This is all on a voluntary basis, the idea is to organize the ball with 0 dinars, using only the contributions of the community” – stated the Women’s Solidarity Front. “We would like to use this opportunity to once again invite individuals and companies to contribute to the organization of this unique event. We would like to recall that, last July, the public in Vranje and across Serbia came together in raising funds to support the healthcare system of Vranje and save lives. This year, we celebrate life in honor of all mothers and fathers who are no longer with us.”
We would like to remind you that you can support your communities in the fight against COVID-19 by making an online donation at covid19.donacije.rs, or by sending an SMS to 7300.