Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better

by ANO CSCI Russian House
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Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Change Lives of 50 Mentally Ill for the Better
Conflict resolution training
Conflict resolution training

It is well-known that employment results in increasing one’s wellbeing, quality of life and self-esteem among individuals with disabilities. However, compared to people without disabilities, individuals with disabilities frequently encounter enormous obstacles in attaining and maintaining meaningful and competitive employment. While there are many barriers to employment for people with disabilities, lack of job-related soft skills is shown to be a significant barrier for them. Soft skillsinclude communications skills, ability to reach compromise, ability to solve problems and conflict resolution skills, critical thinking, reflection, ability to work in a team, fluency, tolerance of change and uncertainty.

The development of soft skills is much more difficult than the development of hard skills because it requires actively interacting with others on an ongoing basis and being willing to accept behavioral feedback. While hard skills can be learned studying from a book or from traditional classroom training, soft skills needs a combination of environment and other people to be mastered. These are much harder to learn, at least in a traditional classroom.

That is why Russia House community decided to start a comprehensive program for soft skills training for participants of the rehabilitation program. Trainings available in the larger society usually are not very suitable for people with severe mental health problems. Russia House developed its own training program adjusted for the needs and abilities of Russia House participants. It includes a wide variety of approaches: discussions, quizzes, role playing, metaphoric associative cards, interventions aimed at development of empathy, critical thinking, etc.

In January 2022 we started this course of trainings. It is rather intensive – we have one 1-hour training a day, 5 trainings a week. We expected that Russia House members will be interested in them. But the first two months of this program showed that the trainings are much more popular than we could expect. Because of winter COVID-19 quarantine we work remotely at ZOOM platform. However, it did not prevent Russia House community from active mastering soft skills. We have had the first feedback from the participants of the trainings. They say that they are not only interesting and exciting but also very useful and helpful. The skills developed can be used and applied at the job placement but also in many-many situations that people face in their everyday life, in their relationships with relatives, in public places (in transport, in shops, in the streets, etc.). And they say that these trainings became a strong motivation to learn more, improve the skills obtained and learn themselves and their strengths and weaknesses better. Some of them say that they started to understand other people much better than before. We hope that this 1-year course will result in positive change in their behaviour, attitudes and better quality of life.

Search for a life's meaning-logotherapy training
Search for a life's meaning-logotherapy training
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A group of Russia House memebrs at a pleinair
A group of Russia House memebrs at a pleinair

Do not you think that the summer is a good time for painting? You can do it in the open air, in the garden, in a company of good friends. Painting helps people suffering a severe mental illness balance their emotional well-being, improve fine motor skills, develop their imagination, learn how to focus attention, be attentive to small details. That is why painting classes are an integral part of the rehabilitation program in Russia House. As COVID-19 situation permitted, we held a series of pleinairs in the park located near the Russia House premises. However, because of very strict prohibitions, painting classes for people living in the psycho-neurological nursing home for the mentally disabled were held in a distant form via zoom conferences. Two professional fine artists Alexander Bobrov and Konstantin Mikhailov provided 16 classes for 9 Russia House participants and 11 residents of the psycho-neurological nursing home for the mentally disabled were held. The classes will continue till the end of October. After that we plan to hold an exhibition in one of the art galleries. In the meantime, enjoy our pictures of summer painting classes!

A group of Russia House members at a pleinair
A group of Russia House members at a pleinair
Mikhail, a member of Russia House, at a pleinair
Mikhail, a member of Russia House, at a pleinair
Another pleinair for Russia House members
Another pleinair for Russia House members
A painting class for Russia House members
A painting class for Russia House members
Painting by Elena Sch., a member of Russia House
Painting by Elena Sch., a member of Russia House
Painting by Mikhail U., a member of Russia House
Painting by Mikhail U., a member of Russia House
A distant class for patients of nursing home
A distant class for patients of nursing home
A distant class for patients of nursing home
A distant class for patients of nursing home
Patients of nursing home at a painting class
Patients of nursing home at a painting class
A screenshot of a distant class for nursing home
A screenshot of a distant class for nursing home
Paintings by patients of the nursing home
Paintings by patients of the nursing home
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Virtual Excursion around Pushkin Fine Arts Museum
Virtual Excursion around Pushkin Fine Arts Museum

Quarantine is no excuse to stop Clubhouse rehabilitation program activities. In our last report we shared with you what we were doing to continue our employment activities. This time we would like to tell you about social and leisure activities. Since the beginning of the second round of quarantine in October 2020 we have not been able to visit museums, exhibitions and concerts, which we actively did before. Nevertheless, COVID-19 times gave a new start to the cultural enrichment activities in Russia House. We could not go to the museums but museums came to us. We could not go to the concert halls but music came to us. But how, you ask? We are happy to tell you!

First, in October 2020 a senior research worker of one of the greatest Moscow museums – Pushkin Fine Arts Museum Varvara Zamakhaeva started virtual excursions on the museum exposition for members of Russia House. Since then there have been 21 really brilliant excursions. Another very important direction was a series of 10 musical ‘classes’. They were provided by a close friend of Russia House, a professional musician and an excellent pianist, Natalya Korshunova. She talked us about various musical styles, musical instruments, history of music and well-known composers. Everybody learned a lot from her classes. She played a lot and we are very thankful to her for hours full of wonderful and inspiring music in the middle of long COVID isolation. Recently the so-called antique puzzles have been started. We have a look at antique items and guess what they were used for. Do you think it is an easy task? No, not at all. Sometimes antiques look different than usual. Such puzzles help to solve a number of rehabilitation tasks. First, they help to develop attention to details and analytical thinking. It is very important for people with mental health problems. Second, antique puzzles give a good opportunity to learn more about how people lived in the past. Third, it is a touch to the world of beauty. And, finally, it is simply a good fun.

We are pleased to write that participants of another charity program MOST from the city of Arkhangelsk (North of Russia) and people living in a residential house for people with severe mental disabilities joined us. We believe that these cultural activities help people with mental health problems survive a long period of the second round of isolation.

Russia House community is heartfelt thankful to everybody who supports us in these difficult time!

Virtual Excursion around Pushkin Fine Arts Museum
Virtual Excursion around Pushkin Fine Arts Museum
Virtual Excursion around Pushkin Fine Arts Museum
Virtual Excursion around Pushkin Fine Arts Museum
Virtual Class on Musical Culture
Virtual Class on Musical Culture
Virtual Class on Musical Culture
Virtual Class on Musical Culture
Antique Puzzles
Antique Puzzles
Antique Puzzles
Antique Puzzles
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Visit by Hilton repfresentatives to Russia House
Visit by Hilton repfresentatives to Russia House

Employment of people with mental health problems is one of the most challenging areas of their their recovery and coming back to independent life. That is why Clubhouse rehabilitation programes throughout the world work hard to help their participants (Clubhouse members) to get jobs. Hilton hotel chain is one of the prestigious employers that assists Clubhouse members in many countries return to the paid employment. Russia House is proud to announce the start of our partnership with hotel Hilton Garden Inn Moscow Krasnoselskaya.

Since autumn 2019 our partnership has been gradually developing. It started with a visit of Polina Kabanova, Hilton Senior Manager Talant Acquisition Continental Europe, and Larissa Antonova, HR Manager of Hilton Garden Inn Moscow Krasnoselskaya, to Russia House in so as to get acquainted with members and staff as well as with our Clubhouse program. They both were really impressed with what they could see at Russia House and decided to work with us towards reaching the members' employment goals. A few weeks later a group of active Russia House members visited the hotel for an orientation visit and learned a lot about the hotel business and different jobs available. Because of the pandemic our partnership plans were postponed to provide supported job placements for a couple of Russia House members.

However, in September 2020 we came back to them and Vlad, one of our members, had a 5-day internship immeduately in Hilton hotel. Director of Russia House supported him immeduately at the job placement and assist to master work duties. It is very important to say that the duties were not very simple at all and they needed good English, ability to work with PowerPoint software and even some basic skills in grafic design.

Hilton hotel chain pays a lot of attention to education of staff in all the hotels throughout the world. In-company trainings adress such important matters as inclusion and diversity, unconcious bias, equality, etc. The so-called Hilton University comprises a lot of training materials, videos and tests. But they all are in English and it is difficult to use them for Russian-spreaking staff. The task was to prepare a multimedia presentation for training Russian-speaking hotel staff. As we have said before it was a very challenging task but Vlad overcame all dificulties and successfully completed this task. Larissa Antonova, HR manager of the hotel, says that she was really impressed with the presentation and test done by Vlad and adds that she has already used them in the trainings that she holds for hotel staff. 

Now 3 Russia House members - Vlad, Pavel and Andrey - are on their 1-month internship at Hilton. The new ones - Pavel and Andrey - are mastering of these complicated duties with the assistance of Vlad and a Russia House staff. Because of pandemic and quarantine in Moscow the internship is remote and their group work at ZOOM platform. After the Christmas holidays they will send the second presentation togerther with training scripts and tests in Russian to Larisa for her overview. We all hope that the materials prepared will get appraisal of Hilton partners. The positive outcomes of the internship for Russia House members are obvious: mastering and improving specialized and advanced skills, regaining self-confidence in performing very complicated and challenging tasks, learning how to work in a team and many-many others.

We hope that the next step of our partnership with Hilton Garden Inn hotel will be getting a paid work for Russia House interns.

Orientation visit to Hilton Garden Inn Hotel
Orientation visit to Hilton Garden Inn Hotel
Vlad on his 5-day internship in Hilton
Vlad on his 5-day internship in Hilton
Vlad works on the presentation for Hilton
Vlad works on the presentation for Hilton
Remote working on a presentation for Hilton
Remote working on a presentation for Hilton
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COVID-19 pandemic negatively impacted mentally ill participants of Russia House rehabilitation program. The quarantine last March 17 to July 20 and Russia House continued to support program participants via Skype, e-mail and telephone calls. One of the important work during the quarantine time was delivering food to participants' flats. Most of participants of the our rehabilitation program are in the high risk group – psychiatric deceases are often accompanied by diabetes and weak immune system. Many of them were frightened by the epidemic and did not venture to leave their flats even to go to the nearest food store. Many of them live together with their elderly parents whose average age is about 73. In a number of families not one but two members suffer mental illness… So most of the families are at Covid-19 risk. That is why Russia House started purchasing food stuff and and hygine necessities and deliver them to the flats of the rehabilitation program participants. Totally, we boght and delivered 1,030 Kg of food products and necessities. They were not simply food and necessities – they were 1,030 Kg of goodness and happiness! It was a real support both in financial and emotional terms. People with severe mental illness did not feel alone and neglected. Instead, everybody felt that they were a part of a strong community. Community that will support them in any challenging situation. We would like to express our deep gratitude to all people who donated Russia House rehabilitation program. Your generous donations give us a fantastic opportunity to help people with severe mental illness in these challenging times!

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Organization Information

ANO CSCI Russian House

Location: Moscow - Russia
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
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Project Leader:
Tatiana Saphyannikova
Moscow, Russia
$16,333 raised of $20,000 goal
 
231 donations
$3,667 to go
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