Key to Opportunity Program
The Key to Opportunity Livelihood Development Project has been designed in response to a tremendous service gap which exists within the social protection services currently available to Belarus’ Jewish Community.
At present, social protection services rely on a welfare-based model of protection, providing emergency assistance in the form of food, goods, and services to economically and socially vulnerable community members and their families.
The KTO Project seeks to expand upon the services available to economically vulnerable community members by offering them the opportunity to undergo vocational training which will improve their employment prospects, improve their income, and help them to escape the cycle of poverty.
The main aim of the project is to enable disadvantaged individuals to improve their economic well-being and build lives of self-reliance and dignity for themselves and their families.
The unofficial rate of unemployment in Belarus is 10%, although the Belarusian government prides itself on having 0.6 % which is one of the lowest unemployment rates in the world. However, this does not reflect the reality on the ground and social support for the unemployed is almost non-existent. The fact is that registered job seekers are obliged to participate in public works program to which their employment agencies send them and the pay there is very low. As a result, instead of relying on the help from the state many unemployed choose to search for jobs on their own as freelancers ( without paying taxes) or to remain at home and be supported by the older family members.