People in Need About us
We are a non-governmental, non-profit organization based on the ideas of humanism, freedom, equality and solidarity. We consider human dignity and freedom to be the basic values. We believe that people anywhere in the world should have a right to make decisions about their lives and to share the rights expressed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
We strive for open, informed, engaged and responsible society that would be able to address problems at home as well as in the world. We want to actively participate in shaping a society where cultural, ethnic, racial and other differences are a source of enrichment rather than conflict.
We are an intrinsic part of the civil society. Our work is based not only on personal initiative and activity of hundreds of our employees and volunteers, both in the Czech Republic and in dozens of other countries, where we work, but also on trust and support we are endowed with by individuals, businesses, governments and international institutions.
The scope of our activities, particular areas and priorities are determined independently with respect to the level of urgency and to our real capacity to change something. It is not so important to have the work done everywhere, however it is essential for us to make a real difference.
In troubled regions around the world, we provide humanitarian aid on the basis of specific needs in the spirit of the Code of Conduct for the International Red Cross. We help people alleviate their distress and support them in the recovery period to be able to get back on their feet.
We fight poverty, whose causes we see in the limitations given by poor access to education, natural resources, healthcare, unequal treatment and discrimination, or by bad governance. We assist people in lifting these restrictions and support them so that they can enhance the quality of their lives. We try to identify the causes of these problems and, together with the people concerned, help with eliminating them.
The recent historical experience of our country enables us to help in some dictatorial or authoritarian regimes, and also in countries in transition. In the same way as the democratic world supported the struggle for freedom in communist countries, we encourage people who are active in voicing criticism and opening a dialogue with the power, in claiming to respect fundamental human rights and freedoms, and also in seeking a more open society. We strengthen the civil society so that it is able to stand as one of the pillars of good governance in newly-developing societies and countries.
We lend a helping hand to our fellow citizen living in social exclusion through social work based on respect and shared responsibility. We solve peoples’ problems in mutual cooperation. Above all, we encourage young people in pursuing education so that they enhance their chance to succeed in life. At the same time, we attempt to contribute towards the solution of serious structural problems, namely over-indebtedness, discriminatory practice of self-governments, situation on the labour market or segregation trends in education.
In addition, our work involves fostering the development of free and responsible people, who are well-informed about contemporary world, are able to directly and critically assess information and opinions, and they are willing to make a difference in the community. We bring personal testimony of the people we work with as well as important global issues such as climate change, sustainable development, fight for freedom and rights of people in dozens of countries, inequality in society, and the status of minorities.
We believe that after decades of oppression and denial of free access to information, so symptomatic of our society at that time, we were given freedom as well as joint responsibility. We believe that closing our eyes to what is happening in a seemingly distant world is as short-sighted as forgetting our own past. This is the reason why we have been shaping up People in Need for over twenty years while building on tangible work and motivating the public to join us.
The People in Need Organization was established in 1992 by a group of war and foreign correspondents who were no longer satisfied with just bringing back information to the Czech Republic. Instead, they began sending out aid. It gradually became established as a professional humanitarian organization striving to provide aid in troubled regions and support adherence to human rights around the world.
Within the twenty years of its existence People in Need has become one of the biggest non-profit organization in Central Europe. Apart from humanitarian aid and human rights, it started targeting the field of education as well as helping people living in social exclusion.
People in Need is a member of Alliance2015, a strategic network of seven European non-governmental organizations engaged in humanitarian assistance and development projects. This collaboration yields effective results both in the target countries and in campaigns aimed at influencing the attitudes of politicians and the general public in Europe.
Nowadays, the foundation’s activities are focused on four main areas:
Emergency relief and development cooperation
- The People in Need provides emergency relief to people during natural disasters or at times of major international crises.
- At the same time, PIN focuses on delivering long-term aid to people living in poverty and deplorable living conditions. In countries across Africa, Asia and Europe it conducts development programmes, whose aim is to improve the access of the local population to education, health care and drinking water, raise hygiene awareness and help develop local means of subsistence as well as to encourage people’s engagement in activities which may influence social processes in their home country.
- For several times, the humanitarian team have also assisted during floods in the Czech Republic.
- Within the 20 years of existence, People in Need has implemented relief and development aid programmes in more than 40 countries.
Human Rights Support
- Helping dissidents and support for civil society in repressive countries and states that are undergoing democratic transition has been underlying the core philosophy of People in Need since its establishment.
- The human rights team concentrate their efforts on working in several dictatorships, authoritarian regimes and countries sharing similar experience of democratic transition as the Czech Republic.
- Nowadays, the programmes for support of human rights are being carried out in Cuba, Myanmar, Belarus, Russia, Moldova, and Ukraine.
- Annually, People in Need organizes the One World International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival.
- Every year, People in Need present the Homo Homini Award to people who have made a significant contribution to advocacy of human rights and democracy.
Social Integration Programmes
- The team of Social Integration Programmes promotes social improvement for the poor or vulnerable families through counselling and educational services.
- In more than 70 Bohemian, Moravian and Slovak municipalities, it provides support for local self-governments leading to social cohesion and municipal development.
- It supports children from vulnerable families in obtaining their education which shall enhance their future chances on the labour market.
- It motivates their parents to take an active approach not only in education of their children, but also in dealing with the family’s overall living situation.
- It seeks solution in cooperation with schools, local municipalities, the police and non-profit organizations.
- Clients or partners actively participate in all activities.
Educational and informational programs
- People in Need works to increase knowledge within Czech society about the problems of poverty, development cooperation, migration, and human rights violations. It also seeks to combat prejudice regarding race and origin, and directly addresses the problem of xenophobia within the Czech society.
- The educational programme Variants is focused mainly on teachers and university students, for whom it prepares seminars, conferences or workshops with intercultural and global development education issues.
- The program One World in Schools works with teachers and students, who are provided with documentary films and other methodological materials for teaching current events of the contemporary world and modern history.
- Informational programs Rozvojovka and Migration are aimed mainly at Czech journalists.
People in Need in Numbers
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Donors and Partners
We can provide our services only thanks to your support. Thank You. These companies and individuals support our work.
The war in Syria enters its seventh year. The number of Syrians who have fled their homes is greater than the entire population of the Czech Republic
March 15, 2017
Aleppo, Idlib (9 March 2017) – After six years of conflict, the people of Syria can see neither peace nor a long-lasting ceasefire on the horizon. On Wednesday March 15, one of the greatest humanitarian catastrophes of our time will enter its seventh year. According to the UN, since 2011 the conflict has forced one in two Syrian’s from their homes. Since the start of the conflict five million people have left Syria seeking refuge elsewhere, whilst another 6.3 million have been displaced within the country. Together, these numbers total more the entire population of the Czech Republic. More than half of the refugees are children, many of whom have never experienced life with peace. The dire security situation across the country has also affected many humanitarian organizations; even schools supported by People in Need (PIN) have been bombed. Nevertheless, despite all the challenges, PIN assists approximately 700,000 vulnerable people a year and has supported more than 2 million Syrians since 2012.
People in Need prepares emergency response to dzud-affected Mongolian herders for the second winter in a row
February 27, 2017
Extreme winter weather, termed ‘dzud’, has hit Mongolian herders once again. The phenomenon which appears approximately once in decade has unusually appeared for the second consecutive winter in a row. Seventeen out of twenty-one provinces have officially declared being affected with dzud. The most vulnerable people are now the herders who did not have enough time to recover from the damages from last year. Around 157,000 herders are at risk of losing livestock and their livelihoods, with the lean season expected to last until May. People in Need (PIN) prepares emergency response to those affected in the Dornod, Sukhbaatar and Khentii provinces of East Mongolia. The most vulnerable herders will receive feed for their animals and financial support to cover basic family needs.
February 16, 2017
The Homo Homini human rights award for 2016 goes to the Russian non-governmental organization Committee for the Prevention of Torture.
Fighting on Ukrainian frontline escalates. People in Need delivers aid to people who were under heavy shelling for three days
February 3, 2017
Avdiivka (3rd February 2017) - Intensive fighting between Ukrainian army and non-government controlled areas forces erupted again in frontline communities. Civilians on both sides of the contact line were under heavy shelling for three days and hostilities still continue. Deadly violence left at least 15 people killed and many injured. Casualties continue to be reported. Just in Avdiivka a recent flare-up in hostilities badly damaged the infrastructure and has left 16,000 residents without heating, water or electricity for some time as the temperatures at night drop to as low as -17°C. “In Adviivka more than 80 houses were damaged due to the recent shelling. The town is still unpowered and thus not fully heated. Water supply is ensured but not in full volumes and the main need is currently fuel for generators pumping the water and water storage tanks,” says People in Need Ukraine Country Director Vanessa Merlet.
January 23, 2017
“Nearly 4 million people are still suffering due to the ongoing war in eastern Ukraine”: this is the major call of the conference “Ukraine – the Human Face of the Eastern Conflict”, co-organized in Brussels today by humanitarian NGOs active for the populations concerned, Action contre la Faim (ACF), the Danish Refugee Council (DRC), the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) and People In Need (PIN). Protection, assistance and access are the main concerns since the conflict turned emergency needs into structural issues.
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