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Transforming Social Assistance at Home Units is contribution to closure of gaps in social service provision in the Republic of Tajikistan

November 32016, Dushanbe, Tajikistan–UNJoint Advocacy Project on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS, UNDP, UNFPA, UNICEF)withtechnical support from theSocial Protection Departmentof the Ministry of Health and Social Protection of the Population of the Republic of Tajikistan (MoHSPP)and SocialProtection Policy Analysis Unit of MoHSPP conducted a round table, where the outcomes of the functional review of the Social Assistance at Home Units (SAHU) in Tajikistan was presented.

Around 25 representatives from the MoHSPP, Social Protection Policy Analysis Unit under the MoHSPP, State Agency on Social Protection of the Population, National and International Organizations, Experts and Donors took part at the event.

During the introductory session,Head  ofthe Social Service sector of MoHSPP,Mr. Yusufzoda Fakhriddin said that “Our main purpose is tostrengthen the capacity of SAHUs and capacity building of their employees and evaluation of other institutions engaged in social protection. This round table will serve as an important steptowards an effective assessment of resources required, barriers to be anticipated, amongst other issues.I would like to stress that a great work was done in the Surveyprocess and I hope that as a result of this event we will develop an action plan for improvement of social service institutions in our country”. 

Mr. Mubin Rustamov, Head of Programme Unit, UNDP Tajikistanin his opening statementmentioned that “It is very inspiring to see the progressing cooperation we are having with the Ministry of Health and SP, Agency of Social Protection, Ministry of Labour, Employment and Migration as well as see our development partners. Under the UNJAP work plan for 2016, it was planned to conduct a reviewon Social Assistance at Home Units in Tajikistan. Our colleagues have successfully conducted the mentioned review. Special thanks go to the MoHSPPfor their dedicated efforts in arranging and coordinating all meetings and appointments in sixcities/districts. Today, we are pleased to share with you the findings of the review. We believe you will find the findings of the reviewvery interesting and beneficial to your ongoing activities. Jointly with other UN sister agencies involved in UNJAP Project, we have already started discussions around our partnership on institutional strengthening of the SAHU system in Tajikistan. We would be very much interested in harmonisation of our interventions with other development partners”.

Ms. Jasmina Papa, Social Inclusion Advisor, UNDP Istanbul Regional Hubwelcomed all participants and in her opening statementmentioned that “This report examines the role and functions of Social Assistance at Home Units (SAHU) and their contribution to social service delivery as set in legislation and policies framing national social protection system. Changed legal and policy context requires institutional capacity and human resources with relevant professional skills to deliver new functions. Thus, MoHSPPinitiated, in cooperation with development partners, a number of interventions to expand capacities of existing structures, to create new ones and to provide methodological guidance for service providers.  One of the activities building into these efforts is the assessment of the functions of SAHUs with a view to propose options for their transformation into providers of holistic and integrated social services at the local level for individuals, families and groups facing diverse social risks. The analysis in this report is based on literature and legislation review, structured interviews with decision makers in MoHSPP, focus groups discussions with management and staff of six SAHUs and interviews with selected development partners”.

It should be mentioned that by the end of the meetingrepresentatives of different institutions engaged in social protection programmedesign and implementation expressed their high-level satisfaction with the round table and its content and suggested to establish a working group under MoHSPP which will engage national and international partners to select the best option for its further piloting and implementation in the country.

For more information, please contact: Mr. Bakhtiyor Mirzoev, Advocacy and Communication Officer, UN Joint Advocacy Project on HIV/AIDS in Tajikistan at: Bakhtiyor.mirzoev@undp.org.

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