Activities of the Imperial Philanthropic Society at Its Early Stage of Formation (1802-1820)
Keywords:Charity, the Imperial Philanthropic Society, Houses of mercy, Alexander I.
The article is devoted to establishment and work of Imperial Mercy Fund in the first years of its existence. This Fund was one of the hugest charity organization in Europe in 19th century. The paper attempts to trace the development of Russian public consciousness in the early 19th century in relation to poor people. Traditionally, the problem of the relationship between society and power, which are considered in the study, is relevant. Based on historical sources, the general nature of the Fund's activity at the beginning of its foundation is presented, the data on the funds allocated from the state treasury for the needs of the poor Russian population. There is the number of people who received assistance; the number of open houses of charity are exist in the article. The paper describes the creation of the Medical and Philanthropic Committee, its activities, sources of funding and effectiveness. Special attention is paid to the establishment of hospitals for the poor people – dispensaries, that provided assistance to people who have suffered an accident, the disabled, deaf and pregnant women. A list of doctors and their addresses to which the reception of poor patients was conducted. The committees (departments) of the Mercy Fund are listed, and their functions are described. The article particularly covers the structure of the Committee on education, whose tasks included the development of projects, translation of books, publication of newspapers and magazines promoting the idea of charity in Russia, maintaining relations with other Russian and foreign charity societies. Particular attention is paid to the description of the Institute of the Blind – Russia's first medical school for blind children (homeless or children from poor families), as well as the establishment of the House of Education for poor boys and orphans. The content of the curriculum, the structure of education, the amount of funding are described in the article.
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