- Program Civil Society
- Program Area Special Initiatives
- Grant Amount $70,000
- Grant Period September 1, 2002–February 29, 2004
- Location Lom, Bulgaria
- Geographic Focus Bulgaria
About this grant
The region of northwest Bulgaria has the highest Roma population in Europe and unemployment figures have reached 65 percent. A large proportion of the population is dependent on state subsidies due to severe economic and social marginalization. In this ethnically diverse and poor region, it is essential to engage citizens in local development to help address grassroots and structural issues.Funding will support activities that include providing training and technical assistance to non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and citizen groups to build their capacity to engage in local development and advocate for structural changes; providing seed grants to grassroots NGOs to enable them to implement skills learning through training; raising awareness of the needs of ethnically diverse communities; and stimulating dialogue among citizens, NGOs and local authorities. In addition, programs targeting the community of Lom will include increasing the level and quality of education for Roma children and youth; improving opportunities for income generation and employment for Roma; and strengthening access to and the quality of social services.The Roma-Lom Foundation was established in 1996 to engage disadvantaged and marginalized communities in local and national development.