Activities of the Socially Oriented Organizations of the Russian Orthodox Church: The Regional Aspects
Introduction. The article analyzes the results of the sociological research undertaken by the authors in 2018 within the framework of the research project "Social Projects of the Russian Orthodox Church" in terms of comparing motivation, social technologies and social consequences of implementing Orthodox social projects in the capital and other regions of Russia in order to identify factors contributing to and hindering their successful implementation at the regional level. The purpose of the
... The purpose of the empirical research was to identify the social functions fulfilled in the process of developing and implementing social projects by organizations within the structure of the Russian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate), as well as by lay organizations created and headed by parishioners of the Russian Orthodox Church. Materials and Methods. The study used qualitative methods of collecting and analyzing sociological data such as observation, in-depth interviews with people participating in social activities of the Orthodox projects and with the members of their target groups. The qualitative study used theoretical sampling and the method of selecting typical cases, which made it possible to describe and analyze social technologies and the consequences of the Orthodox social activities in different areas of impact on the society, including helping the poor and the socially deprived strata of the population, rehabilitation of the disabled, 'pro-life' movements, as well as educational activities. Results. In the process of research, based on the analysis of the survey data, the goals of the Orthodox social projects and their hierarchy have been identified, as well as the peculiarities of motivation of the activities of the participants of the Orthodox social projects studied and the specifics of the forms of organizing social assistance in Moscow, the Republic of Mordovia, and the Ivanovo Region. The social technologies of direct and indirect influence of the Orthodox social projects in terms of educational activities have been studied. The authors sought to assess the transformational consequences of implementation of the Orthodox social projects studied at the levels of the individual, social institutions, and groups. Discussion and Conclusion. The study has revealed that the Orthodox social initiatives help their participants master such skills as fundraising, interaction with the society, government bodies and commercial entities, thus becoming an important segment of civil society. The main difficulties the Orthodox social projects encounter have been revealed: poor systemic work and dependence on the personality of the leader, dependence on grants. The scientific results of the study can be used when developing strategies and implementing social policies with the participation of Orthodox non-profit organizations through a comprehensive analysis of methods and social technologies.