Anti-poverty project scoops EU award and millions in funding

The EU Regio award recognises projects combatting poverty and inequality across the continent. European Commission

A Polish project linking people in need with local support services and members of the public has picked up a prestigious anti-poverty EU award and scooped EUR 2 million in funding.

Dobre Wsparcie, or Good Support, won the Regio star prize in the category for “combating inequality and poverty”. Regio is a prize awarded each year by the European Commission for projects financed by EU funds that offer innovative approaches to regional development and are distinguished by a high level of excellence. The Good Support project had received over PLN 8.5 million from the European Social Fund.

The project will also be highlighted by the EU so that it can inspire others all over Europe.

“Taking care of dependent people is a challenge for us all,” said Olgierd Geblewicz, marshal of the West Pomeranian Voivodeship.Marcin Bielecki/PAP

Good Support is a joint venture between the Science for the Environment Foundation, West Pomeranian Voivodship, and branches of the Catholic charity Caritas from the Koszalin-Kołobrzeg Diocese and the Szczecin-Kamien Archdiocese. So far it has opened two respite flats (locations carers can leave dependants for a short periods) in Szczecin and Kołobrzeg, organised cyclical training for carers of dependent persons, co-financed the renovation of flats of dependent persons and contributed to the development of neighbourly care services.

It also aims to use new technology that will allow people to communicate instantly with carers if they are in need of assistance and help through a Good Support app.

The project uses technology to link dependent people with those who can help them.Good Support

The app will be available to service providers, NGOs and family members or carers of those receiving help. Through the app care givers will be able to organise and display their schedules, find locations via GPS, and generate and archive reports on all their activities. 

“Taking care of dependent people is a challenge for us all,” said Olgierd Geblewicz, marshal of the West Pomeranian Voivodeship, at the opening of the flat in Szczecin. “It is also a challenge for public institutions and non-governmental organisations that have chosen to care for dependent people. From January 1, 2018, we have implemented the ‘Good Support’ project through the Regional Centre for Social Policy of the Marshal's Office. We want to support people who take care of disabled people and people who need help. This apartment is one of the concrete examples of activities.”