8.9 Enhancing social inclusion through culture
Fostering equality, poverty reduction and social inclusion are priorities of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (UN 2015) as a key agenda ensuring global sustainable development.
Slovakia achieves good results in the national priority Poverty Reduction and Social Inclusion. The percentage of the population at risk of poverty or social exclusion is the third lowest in the EU, the Slovak Republic has exceeded the national goal of Europe 2020 strategy to lift at least 170,000 people out of the risk of poverty and exclusion by 2020. However, children from socially disadvantaged backgrounds, people from marginalised Roma communities, single parents and people with disabilities, homeless people, as well as the elderly and women still face a higher risk of social exclusion. ( Report on the results achieved in the national priorities for the implementation of the 2030 Agenda). The interested public has accepted with great enthusiasm the founding of the so-called Inklucentrum (Inclusive Education Centre) which announced its activities in early 2020. Field social work (including socio-cultural animation principles) is the longest functioning and probably the most developed public service in relation to excluded Roma communities. At the beginning of 2020, the last phase of the National Project Support and Improvement of Quality of Social Work started, funded by the European Social Fund. This will ensure the operation of the service until March 2023 and allow continuation of the work of 250 field social workers and 200 field workers, as well as 50 other professionals.
Milan Šimeček Foundation with the support of the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic carried out the research on the “Access of young people at risk of poverty and social exclusion to culture”. Youth for Equality is an organization based in Slovakia, as a local youth initiative with the aim of implementing positive changes and developing activities at the local as well as international level.
Support integration of minorities and refugees into the society, enhance intercultural understanding among locals and third country nationals and promote equality of opportunity for all is aim of ADEL. Currently, ADEL has project Steps to Connection.
The European Wergeland Centre in co-op with the National Institute for Education (SPU) is currently aiming to increase the quality of education in the country, particularly addressing the situation of Roma children and youth.
In March 2021, the Slovak government also adopted a new Roma equality, inclusion, and participation strategy till 2030.
The Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic is engaged in supporting the culture of disadvantaged groups of the population - including youth groups, through the grant program “Culture of the disadvantaged groups". CVEK is an independent research organization working in the area of minority rights and policies and inclusion.
The economic consequences of the spread of COVID-19 will affect all sectors of the economy. Relevant losses of income from private sources, public fund-raising and partially from self-government funds can be expected. Some non-governmental and non-profit sectors will face existential risks, while the support from the national budget is uncertain. There is a high probability that some activities will be put on hold. For the sector, to be able to continue in its functions and bring socio-economic and other benefits to society, it is necessary to set appropriate rules and conditions for obtaining subsidies or other financial support, but also to devise a system for measuring and evaluating the effectiveness of public resources intended for NGOs.