Country Profile: Bulgaria

The Republic of Bulgaria (Bulgaria) is a European Union (EU) country located in the eastern Balkans with a population of approximately 7.2 million people (as of 31 December 2015).  The recent annual report of the Ministry of Health refers to 20,000–30,000 problem heroin users in the country. Heroin and methadone remain the main injected substances. At the same time, there is a growing use of amphetamines and highly addictive non-injecting drugs called ‘spices’. In Bulgaria drug use itself is not prosecuted; however, drug posession is penalized by high fines and/or imprisonment, depending on the substance group. Harm reduction programs in Bulgaria are highly dependent on international financial support currently provided through the Global Fund’s “Prevention and Control of HIV/AIDS” program. Even though the Global Fund’s financial support for NSP ends in July 2016, a solution for this crisis still has not been found.

The Impact Of The Global Fund’s Withdrawal on Harm Reduction Programs. A Case Study from Bulgaria

With reductions in Global Fund support and lack of funding available from other donors, the EECA region now faces the challenge of raising domestic resources for these programs. The lack of transition and sustainability planning heightens the risk of countries losing the progress they have made over the last decade with Global Fund support. This case study examines the situation in Bulgaria and makes recommendations to the Global Fund, national governments, civil society, and other donors for easing the transition and safeguarding previous gains in HIV prevention in Bulgaria.

Law Enforcement and Women Who Use Drugs: improving police relations and cooperation for better public health, community safety and human rights protection, 2015

This briefing paper is intended to provide a starting point to help bridge gaps in understanding the important issues faced by women who use drugs in their interactions with law enforcement authorities in Eastern Europe and Central Asia (EECA). The aim is to facilitate much improved interactions and future cooperation, thereby supporting the prioritization of public health approaches in drug policing. 

Priorities in discussing the new Global Fund 2017-2021 Strategy, The Global Fund, 2015

This position paper summarizes strategic priorities for discussions on the Global Funds new strategy as identified by the Communities Delegation, the Developing and the Developed Countries NGO delegations. This paper is aimed to be used during the upcoming Partnership Forum in Addis Ababa and other consultation opportunities and will be further refined with inputs following the first Partnership Forum.

Forms for Small Grants Round 3 “Through Peers’ Efforts -3”, EHRN, 2015

The small grants program “Through Peers’ Efforts - 3”. Application deadline is 6:00 pm Vilnius time, June 15, 2015. To participate in the Call you need to submit the application form that can be downloaded:  - There are two types of application forms - for legally registered organizations and non-registered initiative groups. Please choose accordingly.  - The application form can be filled in one of the following languages – Russian or English.  - The filled application has to be accompanied by all additional documents listed in the application form.  Download form_for_initiative_group_small_grants_round_3_en. form_for_ngo_small_grants_round_3 form_for_initiative_group_small_grants_round_3_ru form_for_ngo_small_grants_round_3_ru  

Methodology to Assess Harm Reduction Funding, EHRN, Futures Group, 2014

The methodology is developed within the EHRN’s Regional Program “Harm Reduction Works—Fund It!", funded by the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (Global Fund). The Program aims at strengthening advocacy by civil society, including people who use drugs, for sufficient, strategic, and sustainable investments in harm reduction as HIV prevention in the region of Eastern Europe and Central Asia (EECA). To achieve goal and objectives set HPP, in collaboration with EHRN, developed financial tools for undertaking harm reduction funding advocacy. The methodology includes following tools: Harm Reduction Expenditure Tracking Tool captures the actual expenditures for all cost categories of Needle and Syringe Programs (NSP) and Opioid Substitution Therapy (OST) for the last two fiscal years. The tool also enables monitoring of resources for the key harm reduction programs. Harm Reduction Unit Costing Tool estimates the unit cost for harm reduction, i.e., the cost of an NSP and OST client per year. The tool is, therefore, beneficial for decision-makers who budget for harm reduction programs.  Harm Reduction Funding Gap Tool estimates the resource gap for harm reduction.