Delegation of the European Union to Russia

COVID-19: EU-funded project helps homeless people in Moscow

15/04/2020 - 13:35
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Similar to the other epidemics, homeless people are among those most vulnerable to coronavirus. Limited access to health care, health already compromised by pre-existing conditions, addiction and the adversities of the street, less food than would be fine nutritionally, poor hygiene, situations of overcrowding and inability to keep two meters apart, all these factors prompt higher chances of COVID-19 transmission in homeless populations.

The EU-funded “Social assistance to homeless people in Russia” project focuses on reaching out to people experiencing homelessness in Moscow. The project is implemented by Samusocial International and Samusocial Moskva.  In light of the spreading of the COVID-19, the outreach team has adapted its work to overall measures aimed to contain the virus and takes on COVID-19 prevention and awareness-raising.

The project started in January. Since then street rounds in Moscow twice a week for homeless people take place, 244 homeless met medico-social team and 346 people got meds and medical consumables. 328 hygiene kits (containing two and more hygiene items) were distributed among homeless people. Among the group helped by the project, there are ordinary men and women who found themselves in very difficult life situations, some have been evicted because they lost their jobs, some have health issues, all of them are now struggling to cope.

In addition to regular medico-social services, the homeless people receive information on COVID-19, its symptoms and prevention tactics in order to mitigate the risks of coronavirus. 4 awareness raising sessions are delivered for homeless (cough etiquette, COVID-19), as well as hygiene kits with disinfecting products to apply good hygiene practices distributed. People with symptoms are referred to institutions where they can get proper care.

While strictly respecting recommendations for its own safety, Samusocial Moskva's team sees it as foremost responsibility to contribute to the global effort to leave no one behind and ensures continuity of its support to homeless people in Russia.  

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