Switzerland supports vulnerable families living in deprived settlements in Bishkek and Osh

Local news, 11.11.2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has made life even more difficult for the inhabitants of deprived settlements. Switzerland has allocated 5 million som to support 6,000 people in need in 23 settlements around Bishkek and Osh. 

Training on methods of non-violent parenting © Swiss funded project on support of internal migrants, 2020

Living in a deprived settlement presents many difficulties. Among them, access to basic health services, which is guaranteed by the Constitution, can become a real obstacle course. Thanks to Swiss support, more than 600 people have been able to register at a Family Medicine Center and obtain health care services.

The project has been implemented by the local NGOs PA “Kyrgyz Family Planning Alliance” in partnership with PA “Arysh”, PA “Child Protection Center” and NGO “Advocacy Center for Human Rights”. It helped to set up a system to receive medical services in primary health care organizations through a referral document. Once registered, a person gets an access to basic health services and can get the compulsory health insurance. During two months, in September and October 2020, more than 600 internal migrants in Osh and Bishkek have been registered.

In addition, at the peak of the first wave, 6,000 low-income families with children living in 12 deprived settlements in Bishkek and 11 in Osh received food packages and personal protective and hygienic equipment for COVID-19 prevention.

The NGOs also worked with them to prevent domestic violence and child suicides through psychosocial support. Talks and consultations with parents on methods of non-violent parenting took place. A participant of the training explains that thanks to this training, she listen more to her children and discuss with them about their future. Another participant said: “I have learned what psychological violence is. Before I thought that only physical violence exists”. Detection system was put in place with the neighborhood heads and community leaders. They were informed about what to do and where to turn in cases of domestic violence for women and children.