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Results of the 3rd open call

The supported projects under each category are presented in alphabetical order.

1. Strengthened democratic culture and civic awareness

Arengukoostöö Ümarlaud (Development Cooperation Roundtable)
Accelerating climate actions in Estonia by introducing sustainable development on local level in collaboration with environmental organisations
EUR 80 000

The main goal of the project is to accelerate the steps towards sustainable Estonia. For that we are combining the existing knowledge from Estonian environmental organisations into a holistic picture. With the help of that collective knowledge, we will interpret sustainable development topics to the local level in the year of local elections (2021) and will support the emergence and implementation of local green commitments. With this project we are creating favourable conditions for the cooperation among environmental organizations (both national and local) and for accelerating green commitments in 10 local governments in the years 2021–2022.

Main outcomes of the project are that sustainable development and environmental goals are acknowledged in local governments, the responsibility to act has increased on local level. The project has created fertile soil for reaching the Estonian green deal on the state level.

The project is led by the Estonian Roundtable of Cooperation (AKÜ) and the Green Tiger (Rohetiiger). Main partners are The Estonian Young Academy of Sciences and more than 20 environmental organizations from all over Estonia.


Eestimaa Looduse Fond (Estonian Fund for Nature)
Let’s make forestry decisions inclusive and transparent
EUR 93 757,40

The situation in the Estonian forest is worrying. Intensive forest management is becoming an increasing problem due to the associated loss of biodiversity, damage to local values ​​and, more and more, its contribution to climate change. It is crucial that environmental associations and local communities with expertise are involved in forest related decision-making. In practice, however, involvement/public participation mechanisms do not work.

The aim of the project is to reintroduce the principles of public participation in forest decision-making. To this end, it is planned to address both legal bottlenecks and to enforce the requirements for involvement in practice, through participation in specific decision-making processes. The target groups are decision-makers at the national level (the parliament, government, Environmental Board), environmental associations and local active groups.

Project activities involve a legal analysis of the bottlenecks in public involvement in forest decision-making, participating in real-life decision-making processes and empower local active groups with expert support and advice. All activities are supported by strong public communication work.

As a result of the project, the following will be achieved: 1) an understanding of the legal bottlenecks in making forest decisions and solutions, which will also be taken to decision-makers; 2) compliance with the requirements for involvement in specific forest decision-making processes, which results in better decisions on the one hand and model cases on the other, on which to proceed in the future; 3) more motivated and capable local communities.

The project is implemented by the Estonian Fund for Nature, whose role is to manage the project; The partners are the Estonian Ornithological Society, which contributes expert advice to specific decision-making processes, and Green Läänemaa, which participates in local decision-making as a local active group.


Eesti Väitlusselts (Estonian Debate Association)
Local issues to the centre of local elections
EUR 95 506,89

The project aims to strengthen the democratic culture in Estonia. The project focuses on helping people make better informed decisions during elections and supporting the following of Good Election Practices. The project uses different target groups (local journalists, young people, teachers) to shape the public debate during the pre-election period to put focuses on the specific tasks of the local municipalities and prevent the making of false claims and the spread of false information. In co-operation with the project partner Praxis we will create communicative manual to explain the responsibilities of local municipalities which are mainly targeted at journalists. A media campaign on the same topic is targeted at the general electorate. To support making informed decisions we will publish election related fact checks together with Eesti Päevaleht. We will also develop a a manual targeted at local media owned by local municipalities to help them follow Good Election Practices. The Estonian Debating Society will use the manuals developed to create suitable materials for young people, which we will use to train students at schools, youth councils and local youth centres in cooperation with the Estonian National Youth Council. With the help of experienced debate teachers and teacher trainers we will also develop the manuals into teaching materials which can be used at schools by teachers after the end of this project. Different actions of this project will shape the pre-election public debate to focus more on the responsibilities of local municipalities and support the first-time voters with necessary information and skills to shape young people into informed voters.


Keskkonnaõiguse Keskus (Environmental Law Centre)
Climate arguments in environmental impact assessment
EUR 58 864,75

In Estonia, the aspects of climate change are unaccounted for in environmental impact assessments (EIA/SEA), which is a considerable problem. While making environment-related discretionary decisions, the decision-makers have also been unable to consider the climate change aspects (including failure to have due regard to important principles of environmental law). The purpose of this project is to improve legal certainty concerning where, when and which of the climate change aspects should be assessed in EIA. We also aim to raise awareness among local governments and NGOs about the obligations of considering the aforementioned aspects in EIAs and in environment-related decisions. In the framework of the project, we shall carry out actions to raise awareness among the target groups and provide legal aid. To achieve greater legal certainty, we will consider filing strategic challenges and administrative court actions where appropriate. In the final phase of the project, we shall carry out activities related to protection of interest at national level.

As a result of the project, the target groups will become aware of the scope and necessity of considering the climate change aspect in EIA, they will have practical instructions in their disposal, in addition to an improved legal certainty in the said matters. We are hoping it will lead to considering the climate aspect in EIA as standard practice where the climate aspect will be given necessary attention in the course of decisions concerning the environment. The promoter of the project is Estonian Environmental Law Centre who shall be responsible for overall coordination of the project, as well as for the activities related to EIA and to decisions concerning environment. The partner in the project is Friends of Earth Estonia whose tasks, as a leader of Estonian climate action network, would include the topics related to involvement and protection of interest. Stockholm Environment Institute Tallinn department will take part in the project as expert, who shall provide the project with its knowledge in EIA, including the nature of climate impacts.


Kistler-Ritso SA (Kistler Ritso Foundation)
Vabamu on the Wheels: 30 Years of Independence
EUR 55 439,88

Vabamu is building an exhibition platform to reach each county and every Estonian in two years, supporting the modern museum experience outside Tallinn free of charge.

For many people, democracy, the functioning of society and the role of citizens are overlooked compared with day-to-day life. Summer 2021 marks the 30th anniversary of the restoration of independence of Estonia, prompting increased interest in our republic. The upcoming anniversary is an excellent opportunity to consider the changes that have taken place over the past 30 years and their cause, substance and meaning. The travelling exhibition looks back at the restoration of independence and the past 30 years and shows the importance of each person in building and maintaining a democracy. We want to show people that establishing an independent democracy was no coincidence and it required those with the will and skills to cooperate and seize the moment to restore independence. This exhibition highlights that, had we remained passive citizens, our country and society would be very different. It is inspiring and gives hands-on experience of the rights and obligations of citizens.

The exhibition includes a programme of talks and training sessions on democracy to give citizens practical insight how to participate and contribute to everyday functioning of democracy.


Korruptsioonivaba Eesti (Corruption-free Estonia)
Supporting whistleblowers through the Advocacy and Legal Advice Centre (ALAC)
EUR 59 943,20

Through this initiative, Transparency International Estonia will create the Advocacy and Legal Advice Centre (ALAC) to provide free legal advice using safe channels and the help of pro bono law firms to people who are considering reporting or have experienced retaliation due to reporting. Without reporting fraud and corruption, wrongdoing continues and indirectly damages the entire society.

Operating ALAC through a trusted NGO such as TI Estonia, the awareness of how to report safely will increase. Through TI Estonia’s strategic litigation in important cases, the case law will improve the protection of whistleblowers. This is vital as after the adoption of the new law in 2021, TI Estonia can influence court precedence and give statistics-based input to the legal framework on whistleblower protection.

To guarantee ALAC’s financial sustainability, TI Estonia will use already existing networks with high growth potential such as the Business Integrity Forum and organizations that participate in its trainings programme. TI Estonia’s advocacy will become highly informed and the chapter more citizen-centred thanks to reports received by ALAC. Because of the way how ALAC is set up and the knowledge it provides, more stakeholders will participate in the third sector, society will become more transparent and rule of law in Estonia will improve.


Lapsele Oma Kodu (Home for Every Child)
Knowledge provides an opportunity
EUR 40 327,98

The aim of the project is to form a citizen of Narva who is aware of his rights and obligations and actively contributes to the well-being of society and speaks Russian as his mother tongue. The project focuses on supporting the most vulnerable target groups in society - families with children (including young families with children) and grandparents in standing up for their rights in solving social problems. In addition to rights, the obligations that a person should contribute to the improvement of his or her living environment are also thoroughly reviewed and people motivated to do so. To this end, working groups are convened to get acquainted with the basics of the functioning of the state and local government, about the opportunities of the citizens to make an active contribution to the improvement of society. In the course of the project, such experience will be introduced in other regions of Estonia.

As a result of the project, proposals for solving social problems will be handed over to the local government, the city of Narva. The number of people who are actively ready to participate in the life of the community is growing.


Nähtamatud Loomad (Invisible Animals)
Invisible Animals: For an engaging society
EUR 56 220,94

The project is necessary, as currently the potential of volunteering in Estonia is underused. Estonian NGO-s need good examples and know-how on integration of volunteers in their work. On the other hand, some volunteers are looking for micro-volunteering options. In addition, our project is necessary, as Nähtamatud Loomad have many plans for the future; succeeding in them won’t be possible without a well-organised system of integration of volunteers. The aim of the project is to strengthen the civic society, give civic education and enhance civic activity. We will build a thorough volunteer coordination system within Nähtamatud Loomad and share this expertise with other civic movements. We will be educating and empowering volunteers within our organization, so that they could take care of their well-being and comprehend the logic of directing societal processes. A secondary aim of this project is to popularize volunteering as a form of civic engagement.

The target audience of this project are current and future volunteers in Nähtamatud Loomad, alongside Estonian civic society as a whole. We aim to include currently under-represented groups, such as non-natives, males, senior citizens etc. In order to achieve these aims we will offer micro-volunteering opportunities, train volunteers in methods of effective activism, enacting social change, efficient time-management etc. With vis-à-vis media coverage of personal stories from our volunteers, we aim to popularize volunteering.


Sotsiaalse Innovatsiooni Labor (Social Innovation Lab)
Empowering participatory democracy by implementing co-creation methods
EUR 59 938,96

The project is motivated by the fact that the NGOs and public sector do not have enough skills to work with multiple parties while solving problems. However, multi-stakeholder collective problem solving is a central part of participatory democracy. The final report of the Involvement and Impact Assessment Study by the Government Office (2018) states that the possibility of commenting on a draft posted in the information system is still considered sufficient for involvement by public sector organizations in Estonia. The report describes the actors in the policy-making process as “involving actors” and “involved actors” but not as equally important partners in finding solutions. Today's practice of involvement can at best be called consultation and not substantive cooperation.

The OECD (2017) has also pointed out the same tendency in its reports, stating that almost all policy areas today are characterized by complexity – the factors influencing the various areas are intertwined and their connections cannot be fully defined. At the same time, however, NGOs and officials who should find solutions to multi-stakeholder problems do not have enough tools to manage the processes.

The project aims to increase the capacity of NGOs and state officials to design, manage, and promote participatory democracy in multi-stakeholder processes. To this end, two 8-day co-creation training programs and three web-based “co-creation sprints” will be developed and implemented. In order for co-creation to spread and take root in policy making, co-creation methodologies will be introduced to at least 150 officials in 24 workshops in co-operation with the Government Office. In co-operation with the Co-Creation Club, the nature and benefits of co-creation in promoting participatory democracy is introduced to the general public. This is planned through a series of webinars.

 

2. Wider support for human rights and equal treatment

Eesti Avatud Ühiskonna Instituut Estonian Institute for Open Society Research
The Istanbul Convention in Estonia: a shadow report.
EUR 60 000

The aim of the project is to achieve a qualitatively new level and breakthrough in preventing and combating gender-based and intimate partner violence in Estonia. The project is necessary to enhance Estonia’s capacity to implement the Istanbul Convention and to achieve full implementation of the Convention from minimum requirements, taking into account all basic requirements and provisions. A shadow report will be prepared analysing the compliance of Estonian legislation with the requirements of the Convention and the country’s ability to meet the requirements for victims, explaining the protection of various vulnerable groups (minorities, immigrants, LGBT, women with disabilities, elderly women, etc). The most important activities are collecting input from the local level and related development of advocacy activities. The project partner Tartu University Faculty of Law will carry out legal analysis of the Estonian legislation. The tasks of the Pärnu Women’s Support Centre and the Social Capital Cooperation Centre are to conduct training roundtables for non-governmental organisations, especially women’s organisations, to ensure their capacity and competence to monitor compliance with the Istanbul Convention in Estonia.

   

Eesti LGBT Ühing (Estonian LGBT Association)
Recommendations for the Action Plan on the Equality of LGBT+ People
EUR 88 000

The development of LGBT + persons' rights has mostly stalled in the recent years. The legislative power has not adopted strategies considering LGBT+ persons or taken into account the EU’s sectoral proposals. There is a need for effective strategic advocacy and policy-making that involves all target groups involved in ensuring the rights of LGBT + people and are affected by it. The project aims for equality of LGBT + people in Estonia through strategic advocacy work and effective policy-making. The target groups of the project are LGBT + people in Estonia, politicians, policymakers, implementers, the public, the Estonian LGBT Association.

The main activities of the project are qualitative research involving politicians, policymakers, policy implementers, and the Estonian LGBT + people. Recommendations for the National Action Plan on the Equality of LGBT+ People, which covers the entire field of equality of LGBT + people in Estonia; an advocacy plan for the effective implementation of the recommendations for the action plan.

As a result of successful involvement and communication, LGBT + people are more empowered and aware of their rights and opportunities. They have been able to have a say in identifying bottlenecks in legislation and everyday life, thereby enabling the association to work more effectively to protect the interests of LGBT + people. Politicians, policymakers, and implementers are informed and aware of LGBT + issues and problematic areas in guaranteeing human rights. They are empowered and are willing to speak more actively on LGBT + topics in their field of work. Also, more context-sensitive and proactive in their work in ensuring the rights of LGBT + people. Public awareness of the issue of equality of LGBT + people has improved. People know the main problems in providing the rights of LGBT + people and dare and want to draw attention to it. The association's competence in advocacy and policy making has grown, the cooperation network has expanded, and the capacity to defend the interests of LGBT + people is increasing. The activities of the association are more sustainable, more professional, and thus the development of the field in Estonia has been supported.

The project partner Centre for Policy Studies Praxis is the compiler of the qualitative study. Estonian Centre for Human Rights will provide its expert opinion on the final version of the action plan recommendations, and FRI - The Association for Gender and Sexuality Diversity of Norway will share experience and expertise in drafting the action plan recommendations and an advocacy plan.

 

Eesti Neurofibromatoosi Ühing MTÜ (Estonian Society of Neurofibromatosis)
Women with Disabilities: Nothing about Us without Us!
EUR 59 999,72

In Estonia there is a lack of public policies that would specifically focus on vulnerability of women with disabilities. The sexual exploitation of women with disabilities and human trafficking cannot be ignored. Women with disabilities are more likely to be victims of violence (physical, sexual, psychological, and stalking) than women without disabilities. Women with special needs are not guaranteed physical access to gynecologists and shelters for women mainly are also not accessible. Compared to women without disabilities, women with special needs are seen as "less valuable" and it is true even when compared to men with disabilities. Within Estonian legal space the term “multiple discrimination” is not implemented, which means that defending of and rights of women with special needs are extremely restricted.

In the framework of the project several surveys, workshops, art exhibitions, and variety of round tables will be carried out. There will be meetings with policy makers and participation in policy development.

As a result of the project women with disabilities will have increased knowledge about human rights, equal treatment, gender equality, multiple discrimination, human trafficking, and violence aimed at women with special needs. By the end of the project, we have fought against prejudice and negative stereotypes that have developed about women with disabilities. Women with special needs have been introduced to other women in a similar situation to create a supporting community and urge them to be more courageous in taking part in creating a better society as a fully functional member of that society.

The contractual partners of the project are Helpific, Women Lawyers of Estonia, Association of Women with Disabilities of Estonia, Tallinn and Harjumaa Association of Women with Disabilities, and Tartumaa Association of Women with Disabilities.

In addition, Estonian Centre for Women's Studies and Information, Feminist Ministry, Estonian Sexual Health Association, Assocation of Women of Estonia, Estonian Centre for Human Rights, Estonian Chamber of Disabled People will be included. The project will also involve women who have experience in multiple discrimination - the Estonian LGBT Association and women with disabilities who simultaneously belong to an ethnic minority group.


Estwatch
Responsible dining table: supporting human rights and mitigating climate change in food stores’ supply chain
EUR 49 027,48

Estonian food retailers’ supplying practices and citizens’ purchasing decisions impact the human rights of vulnerable populations at the beginning of the supply chains, the environment and climate change. Estonian food retailers, however, largely ignore such sustainability risks, an issue reinforced by lacking societal awareness and insufficient transparency of companies’ internal operations. The project aims to promote the support of the Estonian society for human rights, equal treatment and environmental protection by enhancing the sustainability of food retailers’ supply chains. To achieve this, Estwatch will conduct two studies on the responsibility of food retailers’ supply chains and, together with NGO Mondo, raise citizens’ awareness and involvement in responsible consumption, empower civil society to protect human rights and environment more effectively, and guide companies to be more responsible via dialogue and public pressure.

Project’s expected outcomes include:

  • Advanced understanding and transparency on how studied companies mitigate sustainability risks in supply chains and what they should do more effectively.

  • Stronger public dialogue on the studied companies’ responsibility practices has led to increased awareness of human rights, equal treatment, and climate change in Estonia.

  • Citizens and civil society are more empowered to guide the companies to be more responsible.

  • The studied companies have become more responsible by more effectively managing supply chains’ sustainability risks.

 

Oma Tuba (A Room of One’s Own)
My body, my choice
EUR 99 994

The aim of the project is to raise awareness in Estonia that an important part of human rights is bodily autonomy, ie the right to make independent decisions about one's body, sexuality and reproduction. This is done through advocacy and consistent communication work in Estonian and Russian. Youth are targeted through a positive, empowering, and affirmative social media campaign on sexual consent and workshops on consent “How to say yes?”. As a result of the project, a discussion has started in Estonia on the need to introduce consent-based rape legislation; the human right to bodily autonomy has been introduced into societal debates on abortion and gender-based violence; young people's awareness of the importance of consent has increased; and the advocacy capacity of the organizations involved in the project has improved.

The project is carried out by Feministeerium, partners are the Estonian Sexual Health Association; the Union Defending Violence-Free Life; the Peace Action Community Estonia; the Icelandic Women's Rights Association and the unofficial group Social Medics.

 

Seiklejate Vennaskond (Brotherhood of Adventurers)
Speak up, act up – for human rights
EUR 52 978,80

The aim of the project is to raise awareness of human rights and fight against hate speech. Specifically, we want to:

  • Raise young people's awareness of human rights, hate speech and discrimination by inviting them to take part in action days through debates, film evenings and workshops (eg Peace Day, Combating sexist hate speech, Safer Internet Day, etc.).

  • Train people working with young people on human rights and "No Hate Speech" and introduce them to different tools (eg "Bookmarks", "Human Rights Compass", etc.)

  • To learn from the good experiences and practices of Iceland and Norway and to apply them at the Estonian level

  • Activate the "No Hate Speech Movement!" campaign in Estonia both on the Internet and in the real world

We directly involve 48 people working with young people in the project activities (2 seminars and one follow-up seminar) who will learn how to use nonformal methods to discuss human rights and “No Hate Speech” with youngsters. They, in turn, will do workshops with their young people, involving almost a thousand young people. Ten people working with young people will have the opportunity to participate in study visits to Norway and Iceland to learn from their experience, make contacts and bring that experience back to Estonia. We will organize 18 action days to empower certain minority groups and/or draw attention to discrimination and problems in society. At least 360 young people will take part in these activities. In addition, we will organize two human rights summer schools for young people (50 participants in total) and create a group of volunteer activists who will manage "No Hate Speech!" Estonian social media page. Project is carried out in partnership with Step by Step from Iceland and Terram Pacis from Norway.

 

3. Vulnerable groups empowered

Eesti Pagulasabi (Estonian Refugee Council)
Empowering and making visible people with refugee or migrant background
EUR 60 000

The objective of the project is to empower refugees and people with migrant backgrounds living in Estonia, make them more visible and enable their positive image in the society, and diminish fears, stereotypes and prejudice associated with them. In the framework of the project, the social enterprise Siin & Sääl (Here & There) which involves and offers livelihoods opportunities to people with refugee and migrant backgrounds is further developed by supporting it on its way to financial independence and sustainability, so that it would be able to involve and empower more and more people with migration backgrounds. In addition, a series of roundtables called “Integration Accelerator” are organized by refugees themselves in six different locations targeting municipality-level specialists and workers, to impact their attitudes and tolerance towards people with migration backgrounds. Furthermore, a video calling for more tolerance and understanding, with the working title “Similarities between us”, is produced and disseminated to improve the attitudes and tolerance in the broader society. The core project team is comprised of four people, two of whom are themselves refugees and they will benefit also from acquiring practical leadership and project management skills and experiences. As the result of the project, people with refugee and migrant backgrounds living in Estonia are more capable and empowered and more competitive in the labour market, and people working in the social sphere in local municipalities and the society at large possess more open and tolerant attitudes and views.

 

Eesti Pimedate Liit (Estonian Blind Union)
Establishing a national advocacy organisation for the visually impaired young people in Estonia
EUR 34 062,40

The aim of the project is to set up a well-functioning and sustainable national advocacy organization for the visually impaired young people in Estonia. The organization will protect the interests of the vulnerable target group. The Estonian Blind Union, together with the organizations belonging to its co-operation network, will seek out active young people with visual impairment all over Estonia and encourage them, by means of joint activities and trainings, to work together to protect the interests and rights of visually impaired young people. The project includes organising trainings that are accessible to visually impaired young people. The aim of the trainings is to teach them the principles of citizens’ initiatives - how they are run, how the public is informed, how policy making is done, which organizations are there to protect their interests, how to find funding for their ideas and how to write project applications. The participants will learn about the functioning of Estonian business landscape, including legislation on non-profit organizations. As practical work, young people with visual impairment will organize accessible meetings, a workshop, and a summer seminar.

The desired outcome of the project is the formation of an advocacy organization that is created and managed by the young people themselves, through which they will start to protect the interests of visually impaired young people, providing input at the national and European Union levels to advocate for young visually impaired people.

Within the framework of the project, the Estonian Blind Union will cooperate with its member associations, the Estonian Chamber of Disabled People, Tartu Emajõe School, Tallinn Helen School, Ministry of Social Affairs, Estonian National Social Insurance Board, Estonian Unemployment Insurance Fund, Education and Youth Board and Estonian Society of Ophthalmologists.


Käpp ja Käsi (Paw and Hand)
New method in mentors’ toolbox: how training shelter dogs supports resocialization of people getting out of jail
EUR 42 733,25

The aim of the project is to support resocialization of people getting out of jail by giving them an opportunity to train shelter dogs. By helping to raise the well-being of shelter dogs, participants' own emotional well-being rises as well. They learn how to be socially proactive. They gain new important skills that help them in life and in finding and keeping a job (patience, consistency, moving with small steps towards improving results, noticing the improvement, and reflecting over them). Together with project partners, Baltic Institute for Crime Prevention and Social Rehabilitation, Foundation for Diaconia and Social Work of Estonian Evangelical Church and Johannes Mihkelson Centre, a programme that has previously been used as a separate intervention method will be changed so that it could be used as a tool by mentors. This will allow the programme to reach part of the target group, who live outside of Tallinn and Tartu and whose native language is Russian.


Oskar Alliku Kodu (Oskar Allik Home)
Applied models of milieu therapy in Estonia
EUR 43 204,83

The main goal of the project is to introduce the idea of milieu therapy as an integrated rehabilitation service and the idea of milieu therapy homes in Estonia and thus protect the interests of the target group. The target group of the project and the direct beneficiaries are children with severe and permanent mental and behavioural disorders, who have been diagnosed with a mental disorder, as a result of which children are unable to cope with schooling and daily life. The age group of the project is a child aged 12-18.

The target groups of the project are also: a) network members who could be interested in the development of milieu therapy homes or service (local governments, substitute homes, NGOs in the field, school- homes); (b) the local community, which is to be involved in the development of the milieu therapy home in Peedu with the aim to reduce ignorance, unfounded fear and prejudice towards the main target group (children); (c) the NGOs team whose knowledge and competence are being enhanced. During the project, information days, trainings, mutual study trips will be orgaized, the website of Peedu Milieu Therapy Center will be created and a book on milieu therapy will be translated from Norwegian into Estonian.

The project partner is Larkollen's milieutherapy home from Norway, which has decades of experience in the field and whose team shares their experience and knowledge with Estonian specialists within the framework of a trainings and study trips. As a result of the project, the network members' knowledge of milieu therapy and rehabilitation opportunities for children with mental trauma has increased, the capacity of the NGOs has increased, cooperation with the community has improved and partnership with the Norwegian partner has been strengthened.

 

Rahvusvaheline Maja (International House)
To society through work
EUR 59 999,52

Entering the local job market of Estonia continues to be difficult for highly qualified and low-skilled refugees alike. During the past year International House has piloted an intervention model – a social enterprise called Köömen (Cumin). Köömen offers refugees a work experience programme to support social and labour-market integration. Köömen earns independent revenue from ethnic food prepared by refugees participating in the programme. The aim of the project is to scale up the intervention model to be available for refugees nation-wide. Our goal is for Estonia to be the first country, where each refugee can start working, find a support network and gain valuable skills already within the first few months, preventing prolonged dependence on social benefits.

The project results in a systemic change and a new innovative integration method that does not depend on project grants and effectively supports refugees’ integration to the labour market and society at large. The target group includes refugees in Estonia and possibly third country new migrants. Project partners are social enterprises Marhaba (Estonia) and Mestringsguiden (Norway) with whom we exchange best practices and co-create an impact measurement tool, which will be distributed for free to other similar initiatives in Europe.

ACF Fund operator in Estonia is Open Estonia Foundation in cooperation with Network of Estonian Nonprofit Organizations.

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