Realizing projects that are aimed at lowering the levels of stigma and discrimination and at decreasing the number of rights violation cases in relation to gays, other MSM, and trans people in the field of healthcare, particularly in the area of HIV-services, is a challenging task in the EECA region.
The high level of stigmatization within the society, especially amongst the employees of healthcare facilities, and the insufficient legislative protection create obstacles for gays, other MSM, and trans people in terms of widening their access to medical services.
However, at the same time, organizations that are engaged in the realization of ECOM’s “Together For Our Rights” project were able to execute projects that were aimed at supporting the efforts in mitigating the impact of HIV/AIDS on gays, other MSM, and trans people in order to grant them the opportunity to safely seek medical assistance and services in different countries of the region.
Through the examples of projects, which were supported by ECOM and carried out by national organizations in Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Russia, Tadzhikistan, and Ukraine, one may observe a successful experience in enhancing the potential of HIV-service and LGBT NGOs in revealing and documenting cases of stigma, discrimination and rights violation in the field of healthcare, particularly in the area of HIV-services; in advocating for the removal of obstacles for gays, other MSM, and trans people in the field of healthcare, including the area of HIV-services; in participating in policy development in the field of healthcare on the local and national levels.
The best small grants practices of ECOM within the framework of the “Together For Our Rights” project that are incorporated in the “Long-term Effects of Short-term Funding” document may be useful for both community activists and NGOs that are not only involved in carrying out projects targeted at LGBT and trans people but also in those that are being implemented for other key population groups. The said document may also be of use to governmental representatives while planning advocacy processes and advancing the rights of gays, other MSM, and trans people, as well as it may be used to overcome the barriers that hinder their access to medical assistance and services.