In the framework of the BAIR project, we launched the Call for Applications for the Housing Renovation Fund last Wednesday on the premises of the Bair Community Hub ‘Dimitar Vlahov”. The Fund intends to provide partial renovations in at least 27 legalized Roma households in the Bair neighborhood, in particular on the most marginalized citizens.
“Social rights and housing are top priorities on the EU agenda and this is the main reason for the existence of the Housing Renovation Fund, which is one of the central project activities that aim to make Roma citizens feel the benefits of the project funds directly in their homes. The fund provides three types of interventions, such as installing PVC doors and windows and reconstructing the facade and the roof. As for the criteria, the greatest emphasis is on the physical condition of the object. Priority will be given to the households of single parents, large families, and households consisting only of elderly persons (socio-economic criteria). The households selection will be made according to the criteria already defined by a seven-member Commission of the HR Fund. The commission is made of experts in the requested areas, as well as representatives of the project partners and representatives of the Roma community in Bair. The Roma citizens will have the opportunity to apply to start from September 21 and every working day, including October 7, until 2 p.m. If there are an insufficient number of applicants, the call will be extended”, said Klimentina Gjorgjioska, project manager.
“We are starting a new process within the BAIR project, together with our partner organizations, with which 27 Roma households will have the opportunity to renovate their homes. I believe that more humane and dignified living conditions will be created thanks to the fund. The most important criteria in the Call, which must not be deviated from, is that the selected households are legalized and part of the Detailed Urban Plans, for the invested funds to have a sustainable effect. This is precisely why legalization is a process that has been intensively worked on throughout this period. With the “Bair” project, we also included the reconstruction of the streets “Strushka” and “Sutjeska” in the Bair neighborhood, while the partnership cooperation also enables the realization of the social and inclusive component, through the implementation of activities that encourage the development and support of cultural and sports initiatives and campaigns to raise public awareness among the Roma population on relevant topics of daily life. In this whole process, the most important thing is the participation of the population, because its participation also enables accurate identification of the needs during the realization of the projects”, pointed out Mayor Toni Konjanovski.
“The interest for application for the Housing Renovation Fund is high among the citizens of the Bair neighborhood. Starting from the beginning of September they come to our office in the Bair Community Hub, requesting additional information and guidelines. My colleagues and I provide them with technical assistance during the whole process of application and collecting the essential documentation”, said Filiz Aliu, member of the Bair Support Team.
The project “BAIR – Bitola’s joint Action for the Inclusion of Roma” is financed by the European Union through the pre-accession instrument IPA 2, EU for Roma and people living in deep poverty. The implementers of the project are the lead partner COSV, the Municipality of Bitola, and the Foundation for sustainable economic development PREDA Plus.