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Public Defender Visits Free Canteen and Crisis Center for Victims of Violence in Ozurgeti

On August 3, 2020, Public Defender Nino Lomjaria visited a free canteen in Ozurgeti, Guria region. The Public Defender checked the conditions of food preparation and storage, received information about the daily menu and talked to the beneficiaries of the canteen. The free canteen serves 180 beneficiaries.

During the meeting with the Public Defender, beneficiaries positively assessed the quality of service delivered by the canteen staff; however, according to them, there is only one canteen in the municipality and the socially vulnerable residents of the rural areas have to use transport in order to enjoy the service, which is related to certain difficulties.

According to the Public Defender, the waiting lists represent a challenge. In addition, it should be noted that the food is not diverse; the menu is the same from week to week and the canteen administration has no right to change it or to prepare dishes with seasonal products. The increased prices for agricultural products also created big problems.

The Public Defender also visited the Ozurgeti crisis center for victims of domestic violence, which offers legal and psychological counseling, as well as the services of the social worker.

The Public Defender received detailed information about the activities of the institution. According to the lawyer of the center, the rate of application to the center is low in Guria compared to other regions of Georgia and despite the efforts of the staff of the center, more and more active information campaigns are needed to raise public awareness. The Public Defender spoke to the staff and viewed the building.

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