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Vladimir Potanin donates one billion rubles to support the non-profit sector in times of global instability

The Foundation is now announcing the launch of new large-scale initiatives to help non-profits and their beneficiaries to survive the next few months

(en) Текст новости

These days, we are facing a global challenge, as all societal and economic processes are undergoing a profound change. Looking for new operational formats has become an urgent task for the third sector: the coronavirus pandemic may cause unpredictable consequences for many non-profits, endangering the lives and well-being of billions of people. Risks are especially high for unprotected and underprotected groups: senior citizens, people with disabilities and health conditions, children left without parents, families with many children, and all those individuals in difficult life situations whom non-profits strive to protect.

Vladimir Potanin: “The pressure non-profits are facing today has significantly increased. They are forced to quickly overhaul their operations, while losing access to traditional fundraising tools. Through our support to NGOs we contribute to the global effort to overcome the consequences of this crisis, so that the people who found themselves in difficult circumstances are not left alone. I am convinced that these extra resources will help NGOs not only to get through the crisis but in the long run as well.”

The Vladimir Potanin Foundation already offered help to its grantees and partners by making the implementation requirements for the projects it had supported earlier more flexible. The Foundation is now making the next step and announcing the launch of new large-scale initiatives to help non-profits and their beneficiaries to survive the next few months, which are bound to be the most challenging, create conditions for restoring their normal operations, and support them in attaining greater sustainability. 

Common Cause Grant Competition

The Foundation will provide institutional support to the most vulnerable groups in the field of culture and non-profit sector.

The new initiative, with its allocated budget of 100 million rubles, will support adaptation to recent changes. NGOs in the social and cultural fields will be able to avoid decrease or termination of their activities through adopting online operations, developing mobile services, purchasing new equipment, and employing cutting-edge technology. 

New strategies are of vital importance for social NGOs’ ultimate beneficiaries: many such NGOs are now concerned with finding innovative ways to provide their services. Because of the recent constraints, many had to forego their traditional methods, such as fundraisers, volunteers’ visits to orphanages, nursing homes, hospices, and hospitals. In response to these changes, foundations are beginning to work online, create video opportunities for volunteers, and organize online campaigns, for example, to purchase sanitizing materials, food and medications online.

This transition to digital formats, which implies new staff skills and competencies, may potentially become not only a tool for overcoming the crisis but, in the long run, a platform for attracting new audiences and expanding NGOs’ fields of activities.

The competition will be launched by March 25 at the latest and have two nominations: Museums: The New Form and NGOs: Going Agile. The maximum grant amount in this nomination is 1 million rubles; its additional benefit is quick disbursement of funds and unrestricted nature of grant funding. The Foundation will accept applications on a rolling basis and award grants monthly for the duration of seven months (March through September 2020).

New Dimension Grant Competition

Large organizations that provide an infrastructure for charitable assistance to vulnerable groups will be able to receive the Foundation’s support through its New Dimension grant competition. This initiative seeks to prevent long-term consequences of the pandemic for NGOs operating during the COVID crisis in high-risk areas and with the most vulnerable groups (senior citizens, patients of psychiatric care and nursing facilities, homeless, audiences with special needs and disabilities). 

Grants, in the amount of up to 10 million rubles, may be split between two nominations, as seen fit by the applicant organization: operational support and setting up an endowment.

The total budget set aside for this initiative is 500 million rubles. The Foundation will begin accepting applications on March 31, 2020, and the grant procedure will be also simplified. Grants will be awarded for the period of one year and may be renewed once for each applicant.

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