“Nothing for us without us” – the year has passed for the Center of Estonian North-East Communities.

“Nothing for us without us” – the New Community Center in North-East Estonia celebrates first year of its activities.

On May 24, 2019, the Community Center, established by the NGO “Estonian Network of PLHIV” NGOs (www.ehpv.ee) and the NGO LUNEST (www.lunest.ee at Jõhvi, Rakvere 5a) opened its doors. For the first time in Estonia, a unique center has been created in which services are provided to several key groups and managed by community representatives. Various projects with the support of the National Institute for Health Development (TAI) made it possible the creation of the center. Undoubtedly, the emergence of the center helped to get closer to the real changes, first of all, with regard to the life of people at risk.

According to the organizers of the center:

“Nowadays there are so many challenges – the lack of stable funding, attacks on communities, there is an atmosphere of prejudice and tension in society towards HIV-positive people and people who use drugs and psychoactive substances, representatives of LGBT people. The fundamental principles for our solidarity are equality and freedom.

We can change the world for the better in solidarity, not in confrontation.”

As part of the communities development, emphasis has been placed on health and socially significant diseases, the rights to prevention, treatment and support. The Estonian network of PLHIV and LUNEST continue to hope for the state support, because all mentioned activities are the bases principles of the new Estonian HIV strategic plan. Protection of rights should be the strategical goal for the nearest future, advocacy of the people’s interests, services development by communities and for communities.

Despite of difficult situation in Estonia and in other parts of the world, we should respect equality, it is necessary to oppose any discrimination! Estonian society should be equal for everyone.

Equality should be based on universal values, humanism and law principles.

Nowadays, there are so many situation that distancing people, there is an attack on solidarity. But only basing on the united community power we can achieve  real changes!