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2016 www.partnersalbania.org partners@partnersalbania.org


Table of Contents

Partners Albania celebrates its 15th anniversary

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Enabling Environment and Sustainable Development of CSOs Discussing on the enabling environment for the development of civil society organizations in Albania

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Monitoring Matrix on Enabling Environment for CSOs, Country Report for Albania 2016 9 The NPO Academy Financially viable civil society = Active civil society Confiscated assets used for social experimentation - C.A.U.S.E project Capacity building programs for CSOs

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The Albanian Crowd, an interactive platform for Albanian NPOs and social enterprises 12 Monitoring the Busan Partnership

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Contributing in the regional discussion on the development of an enabling environment for civil society organizations 13

Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation

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Green Ideas competition 2016

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“Social Enterprises’ development in Albania – Between definitions, approaches and developments”

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Discussing the challenges and opportunities for employment of marginalized groups through social enterprises

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Contributing to the social entrepreneurship development in the region

16-17

Women and Youth Employment and Increased Representation in Decision-making 18

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Making the Labor Market Work for Young People in Albania - RISIAlbania Project

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ICT Youth Camp

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Youth Bank Hub for Western Balkan and Turkey

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Philanthropy and Corporate Social Responsibility

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Philanthropy Awards 2016

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Monitoring of philanthropic activity in Albania

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Celebrating Solidarity

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Transparent and Accountable Governance

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Implementing the law on whistleblowers and whistleblowers protection

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Local Democracy in Action - LEVIZ ALBANIA Project

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Participatory budgeting at local and central level

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Better local governance through transparency and accountability of municipal councils 27 Urban Governance/Integrity Building in South East Europe - Urban Partnership Program II

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Facilitating public input on the World Bank strategy in Albania

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Partners Network Annual Meeting

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Partners Albania in Media Focus 30 New Publications 31-32 Finances 33

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HIGHLIGHTS OF OUR WORK DURING 2016

23 projects 15 donors 46 partner organizations

24 leaders of

NPOs graduated in the NPO Academy 2016

18 lectures and 2

international study visits

over

1800

direct benefitiaries

Participation in

32 international events

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Member of international networks

20 training programs, 30 training days and 11 workshops, 520 participants

12 information sessions on

green ideas competition; ICT youth camp; financial management for NPOS, etc.

210 participants

5 national public events at level 340 participants

21 consultative

regional round tables on participatory budgeting at central and local level; social, economical and political inclusion of youth; Law on whistleblowing; Busan partnership agreement etc. Facilitation of public input on the World Bank strategy in Albania.

705 participants

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Above: Juliana Hoxha, PA Director addressing the guests in the ceremony. Down, from left to right, honourable guests discussing about PA impact: Andi Dobrushi-Director of OSFA, Eglantina Gjermeni-Minister of Urban Development, Bledi ร‡uรงi-State Minister on Local Issues, H.E Christoff Graf-Ambassador of Switzerland in Albania. Second row, from left to right: Adriana Berberi-Chief of Cabinet in the Ministry of Education, Eglantina GjermeniMinister of Urban Development, Violeta Volumi-winner of Philanthropy Award 2016, Bardhylka Kospiri-Deputy Minister of MOSWAY, video greetings from colleagues across the globe, Partners Albania team.

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Partners Albania celebrates its 15th anniversary The year 2016 marks the 15th anniversary of Partners Albania for Change and Development. For 15 years, Partners Albania has been privileged to work with and support efforts of hundreds of civil society organizations, state institutions, and private sector businesses to advance Albania’s democratic system and values, and strengthen accountability and the rule of law. Through its work and diverse programs, Partners Albania has positively impacted the personal development and growth of so many civil society practitioners and public administration officials in their efforts to building strong institutions, manage open and transparent processes, and overcome corruption. It has been so rewarding to see how institutions have strengthened and become more accountable, how policies have changed and become more responsive, and how processes have become more inclusive and participatory.

We have looked for and found inspiration in our partner organizations in and outside the country, strength and support in numerous formal and informal networks that have been vital for “untraditional” advocacy work at the local and regional level, resources in loyal and generous donors who showed trust in our vision. Partners Albania was born as part of a network, Partners Network, and continues to base its work on institutional and strategic partnerships. After fifteen years of work, the project is not yet done. Partners Albania will continue to honour its responsibility to support the strengthening of democracy and economic development in the country. It has the capacity and the know-how to continue to provide support to the state and non-state actors in the project of democracy building over the many years to come.

In these 15 years, PA has not gone for the easy and safe path, which has made our journey sometimes more difficult. Often our key phrase has been “challenge the status quo”, but we have always stayed loyal to our organizational values Note from PA Director Juliana Hoxha, in the report Partners Albania—15 years of growing a – ethical, cooperative, inclusive, and professional. Despite stronger democracy. the stumbling blocks we have come a long way and shown commitment, creativity and resilience.

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Enabling Environment and Sustainable Development of CSOs

Discussing on the enabling environment for the development of civil society organizations in Albania Partners Albania organized the national conference Creating an Enabling Environment and Enhancement of Capacities for CSOs Development in Albania, with participation of representatives from government and state institutions, donor and civil society organizations in Albania and Slovakia. During the conference, the findings and recommendations of the Monitoring Matrix on Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development, Country Report for Albania 2015 were presented, highlighting the latest developments in the legal and regulatory framework on the cooperation between the state and NPOs, such as the approval of the law on the National Council for Civil Society, as well as problems and challenges the NPO sector faces as regards the registration process, fiscal treatment, access and transparency of public funds etc.

The conference was addressed by Mr. Stefano Calabretta, Programme Manager for Civil Society and Human Rights in the EU Delegation to Albania, Ms. Plejada Gugashi, Local Programme Manager of The Olof Palme International Center in Albania and Mr.Andi Kananaj, Director of ASCS, who discussed on the issues addressed in the monitoring report. Mrs. Karolina Mikova, Director of Partners Slovakia, shared with participants the experience of the National Council of the Slovak NGOs as a cooperation structure between government and civil society in Slovakia. Partners Albania launched in the conference the NPO Academy 2016, an innovative program for the enhancement of capacities of the Albanian NPOs leaders, to build effective organizations serving the public and interest groups. Participants of the NPO Academy 2015 shared with colleagues and guests their experience in this program, bringing examples of achievements and results of their organizations, through knowledge and experience gained from participating in the Academy.

Tirana, March 2nd 2016 8


For the fourth consecutive year partners Albania prepared the Monitoring Matrix on Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development, Country Report for Albania 2016. The report builds on the monitoring of the developments in the national legislation, and direct structured interviews with 96 CSOs all over Albania, to assess their experiences with implementation of the legislation. The Monitoring Matrix is organised around three main areas: 1) Basic Legal guarantees of Freedoms; 2) Framework for CSOs’ Financial Viability and Sustainability; and 3) Government – CSO Relationship.

The NPO Academy Partners Albania successfully implemented for the second consecutive year the NPO Academy 2016. 24 NPO executives from across the country benefited knowledge and skills enhancement, cooperation, networking and partnership opportunities with similar organizations in country and abroad. The program offered education and development opportunities through contemporary learning approaches and multidimensional experience exchange, through 10 lectures focusing on organizational development, financial management, fundraising, project management cycle, networking, advocacy, strategic planning and communication. The program was led by Partners Albania lecturers and international lecturers from Partners Slovakia. On October - November, two study visits to Slovakia were organized with the group of NPO Academy participants and representatives from Albanian municipalities and other local NPOs, who were introduced to the work of Slovak organizations, citizen action groups and public institutions in Bratislava, Banska Bistrica, Zvolen etc. Meetings with organizations and public institutions helped participants to learn on NGO-State cooperation, innovative approaches in fighting corruption, crowd sourcing, fundraising, participatory budgeting etc. The study visits was organized in cooperation with Partners for Democratic Change Slovakia. The NPO Academy was financially supported by Olof Palme International Center in Albania through funding from the Swedish Government and the Slovak Aid - Official Development Assistance of the Slovak Republic.

The graduation ceremony of the participants in NPO Academy 2016, December 20th 9

Enabling Environment and Sustainable Development of CSOs

Monitoring Matrix on Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development, country report for Albania 2016


Enabling Environment and Sustainable Development of CSOs

Financially viable civil society = Active civil society This newest initiative of Partners Albania aims to contribute to the financial sustainability of the civil society organizations engaged in strengthening of democracy, rule of law and good governance in Albania, respect for human rights, increase of citizen activism and community development.

business models to increase and diversify income; build bridges of cooperation among NGOs and local businesses in order to increase knowledge and understanding of civil society work and their services, as well as identifying concrete partnership opportunities in providing these services.

PA will assist NPOs to develop alternative funding streams which will increase their independence in advocating for social change on behalf of their members and beneficiaries.

This initiative is implemented in framework of the Civil Society Watchdog and Advocacy Program supported by the Public Affairs Office of the US Embassy in Albania.

Partners Albania is working with civil society organizations that are part of this program, to identify together with them possible income generating activities to increase the impact and sustainability of their work; to strengthen their capacity and skills through a long-term training and coaching program for adopting appropriate

The program was officially launched on a public event organized on December 9th by the Public Affairs Office of the US Embassy in Tirana. The event which brought together over 80 civil society representatives and activists, was addressed by H.E. Mr. Donald Lu, US ambassador in Albania.

“We want you to be tough watchdogs. We want you to be assertive and independent. And we want you to be courageous.” H.E. Mr. Donald Lu, US Ambassador in Albania

“C.A.U.S.E.” Confiscated assets used for social experimentation Partners Albania in partnership with the Italian organizations Project Ahead Societa Cooperativa and Comitato don Peppe Diana, is implementing the EUfunded project “C.A.U.S.E. – Confiscated Assets used for Social Experimentation”. The project will offer training, mentoring and financial support to Albanian NPOs that will be selected through an open application process, to implement their social projects in confiscated assets. In June, the project provided two training programs on “Confiscation, re-use and management of the confiscated assets”, respectively with the Agency for the Administration of the Sequestered and Confiscated Assets (AAPSK) and “Marin Barleti” University. The training with 10 administrators of the sequestered and confiscated assets and coordinators of the AAPSK, served as a starting point for the assistance that the project will offer to the Agency for the preparation of the internal procedures for giving in use and monitor of assets to non-for-profit organizations for the 10


based on the experience of the Master’s programme managed by the University of Naples, aiming its replication and inclusion in the program of the university.

Capacity building programs for NPOs Advanced Advocacy and Lobbying During April 2016, Partners Albania organized two 2-day training programs on Advanced Advocacy and Lobbying for 31 Albanian NPOs, with focus on bringing regional best practices on this regard. The training programs were delivered by Mr.Dusan Ondrusek, experienced in training delivery and organization of advocacy and lobbying campaigns in Slovakia. Mr.Ondrusek is the president of Partners for Democratic Change Slovakia. These training programs were organized with the financial support of the United States Embassy in Albania.

Financial Management In frame of its work to create an enabling environment for civil society organizations, Partners Albania published the 2nd edition of the Manual on Financial Management of Non-profit organizations. This edition reflects the changes occurred in the legal and fiscal framework that regulates the activity of NPOs, and responds to the new dynamics of the sector’s development. To consult NPOs around the issues addressed in the manual, as well as to inform them about the developments in the fiscal practical and legal framework, PA held in June three regional roundtables in Tirana and Elbasan, with NPO financial managers and directors. This Partners Albania initiative in support of civil society organizations was supported by the Open Society Foundation for Albania.

Cooperative Planning and Participatory Governance models and tools With a request from Caritas, Partners Albania offered a training program on Cooperative Planning and Participatory Governance models and tools, to a group of 28 members of this organization. The training helped increase the knowledge of participants regarding models and tools on strengthening the cooperation and partnership with governmental institutions at local level, to ensure the sustainability of the program.

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Enabling Environment and Sustainable Development of CSOs

implementation of social projects. The training with 15 lecturers of “Marin Barleti” University served to introduce the concept of social economy and the curricula on the topic of confiscated assets


Enabling Environment and Sustainable Development of CSOs

Monitoring of the Busan Partnership In the role of focal point for civil society organizations, Partners Albania prepared the report for Albania on the monitoring of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation - Busan Partnership, which was focused on the second indicator: Civil society operates in an environment which maximizes its commitment and contribution to development. Albania participated in this monitoring process for the second consecutive year. The Global Partnership was established in the Fourth High Level Forum for the Foreign Aid Effectiveness, in 2011 in Busan. It aims to measure the progress of implementation of the Busan commitments on effective development cooperation.

Its monitoring framework for 2015 consisted of 10 indicators which focused on strengthening of the institutions in developing countries, enhancement of transparency and cooperation, strengthening of gender equality and greater involvement of civil society, policymakers and private sector in the development efforts. In the consultative meetings that Partners Albania held in Elbasan, Shkodra, Tirana and Vlora, were discussed issues of the dialogue between different actors in the design and implementation of development policies, accountability and transparency, cooperation between development agencies and donors with CSOs, as well as the legal and regulatory environment in which CSOs operate.

The Albanian Crowd the online platform of Albanian NPOs and social enterprises

www.thealbaniancrowd.org The Albanian Crowd supports 148 member organizations from across the country, operating in different fields. The platform provides comprehensive information on the location, scope of work, areas of activity, beneficiaries, services the organizations and social enterprises offer and projects they are working on. Since it was launched, the platform counts over 20,000 visitors, more than 2 million hits from nearly 150 countries from all continents. Albanian organizations and interested groups can join the platform by completing the online registration form available at: http://www.thealbaniancrowd.org/aplikimi-en/

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TACSO Regional Conference: Sustainability of the Framework Partnership Agreement (FPA) Projects, Brussels 25 – 27 January 2016 The conference provided an opportunity for the Framework Partnership Agreement (FPA) Projects to gather and assess the prospects for the sustainability of their results and endeavours beyond November 2016.

Regional Conference: Monitoring of the EU Guidelines – Year 2, Skopje Macedonia, 27-28 April 2016 The conference contributed to steering the processes along the desired changes across the countries set in and by the ‘Guidelines for EU support to civil society in the enlargement countries, 2014-2020’ (EU Guidelines). Experts’ Conference on Freedom of Peaceful Assembly in the Western Balkans, June 21, 2016, Skopje, Macedonia

8th Annual Council Meeting of the Balkan Civil Society Development Network, 18-19 April 2016, Skopje. Members of BCSDN met together to review the network’s activities for 2015, and discuss and launch the Strategic outlook for 2017-2020.

Regional Conference Transparent Allocation of Public Funds – EU good practices and Models, Jahorina, Bosnia and Herzegovina, March 29-31, 2016. This conference jointly organised by the EU’s Project of Technical Assistance for Civil Society Organisations (TACSO) in BH and TACSO by VESTA resource centre, presented and discussed good models for ensuring transparency of public funding for civil society and sharing mechanisms for implementation and monitoring so to contribute to possible strategies, mechanisms and cooperation models for improving the enabling environment for CSOs in Western Balkans and Turkey.

The conference convened over 30 regional and international experts representing civil society organizations, state institutions and intergovernmental organizations, to discuss regional trends and issues and what can be done in specific country contexts to safeguard Freedom of Assembly. BCSDN Debate Raising Standards, Declining Trends? Operating Environment for Civil Society in Enlargement Countries, Brussels, 7th September, 2016 In the event was presented the state of affairs on the conditions in which civil society in Enlargement countries operate vis-à-vis the BCSDN monitoring methodology (Monitoring Matrix on Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development) and European Commission’s new approach (EU Civil Society Guidelines) within monitoring the progress of Western Balkan countries and Turkey on their path to EU membership. 13

Enabling Environment and Sustainable Development of CSOs

Partners Albania’ contribution in regional discussion on the development of an enabling environment for civil society organizations


Green Ideas competition 2016

Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation

For the fifth consecutive year, Partners Albania organized on 24-25 May 2016 the National Competition “Green Ideas 2016”. The competition serves as an incubator for business ideas in the field of sustainable development, utilizing local resources and revitalizing traditions of production and community-based markets in an environmentally friendly way. The program supports individuals, social enterprises, non-forprofit organizations and family business ventures through a joint fund created with contributions from local companies and private donors, with institutional support of Rockefeller Brothers Fund. During the two days of competition, sixteen finalists presented their ideas before the evaluation panel of experts who selected the three best ideas. Each of the winning ideas received funding in the amount of 800,000 ALL. The co-funders are Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Credins Bank and Telekom Albania. Cultivation of saffron

Komani speaks

Agritourism, Eco-Social Farm

The idea presented by Fiqiri Guxha, aims the cultivation of saffron in the village Daias in Petrelë. Through this initiative local people will be trained and employed along the entire process from cultivation of the plant until the packing.

The idea of the organization Cospe aims to revitalize the Komani culture focusing on its historical, cultural and natural values, towards the local economic development with the involvement of the community.

The initiative of the organization “The Door” aims to enhance and diversify the services of the Eco- Social Farm established in the Oblique village, an area that offers many natural and cultural attractions.

The winners of the national competition participated in the Annual Regional Competition “Philanthropy for Green Ideas”, organized in Serbia on July 27 -30. The 15 winners of national competitions from Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia competed for three winning prizes at regional level, one of which was received by the idea from Albania “Cultivation of saffron”. Philanthropy for Green Ideas is a Balkan Green Foundation program supported by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund aiming to stimulate and encourage innovation for green business ideas in the Western Balkans. 14


“Social Enterprises’ development in Albania – Between definitions, approaches and developments” - international debate

The debate brought together 60 stakeholders supporting the development of SEs in Albania from line ministries, academic institutions, development agencies and international donors, and SEs’ representatives. The debate also shared best practices and challenges on SEs’ development from Estonia, France and Belgium The representative of the Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth (MSWY), Mr. Erion Manohasa, introduced

to the participants and the online audience the approach and perspective of MSWY to the development of SEs in Albania. The debate also served as a forum for the presentation of the draftlaw on SEs and addressed some questions and concerns from the participants in this regard. Key speakers in the debate were representatives of consolidated SEs such as YAPS and ADRF and those created recently such as Gjirokastra Foundation and Naturalb Soaps. They shared their experience in this field and the challenges faced from the operation under the existing legal framework. Representatives of SEs such as SE Network in Estonia, IREX Europe France and Knowledge Centre Social Europe in Belgium,

joined the debate online and discussed on the institutional understanding and approach to social enterprises in their respective countries, legal framework that regulates their activity and the perception on social enterprises as forms of entrepreneurship providing employment and integration for minority and disadvantaged groups of citizens, contributing to the social economy development. The debate was organized in the frame of “U-Impact! From Citizen Involvement to EU Policy Impact” project under the “Europe for Citizens” program of the European Union. The debate is available at Partners Albania YouTube channel.

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Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Partners Albania organized an international debate Social Enterprises’ development in Albania – Between definitions, approaches and developments. The debate focused on the approaches to and development of social enterprises in Albania, and comparison with current trends in other European countries.


Discussing the challenges and opportunities for employment of marginalized groups through social enterprises Partners Albania organized in Tirana the conference “The Challenges and Opportunities for Employment of Marginalized Groups through Social Enterprises”.

Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Following its commitment and contribution in the public discussion on this issue, Partners Albania presented in the conference the findings of the study “The Challenges and Opportunities for Employment of Marginalized Groups through Social Enterprises”,

providing a general overview of social enterprises, characteristics of their development, dimension, and opportunities they offer for employment and integration of marginalized groups. Different perspectives of development of the legal framework and practices in the region and beyond were also presented and discussed in the conference. This event was organized in the frame of the project “Challenges and Opportunities for Employment of Marginalized Groups through Social Enterprises” implemented in three countries in the region, Albania, Kosovo and Macedonia, supported by the Regional Research Promotion Programme (RRPP).

Social enterprises conference in Glasgow Arjola Agolli, Director of Programs represented Partners Albania in the Social Enterprise Conference organized on March 7th at the “Social enterprises conference” Glasgow Caledonian University. This was a dissemination event of the projects EFESEIIS (“Enabling the flourishing and evolution of Social Entrepreneurship for innovative and inclusive societies”) and CHALLENGES “Challenges and opportunities for employment of vulnerable groups by Social Enterprises”, with reflections from the Common Health programme. As one of the key speakers in the panel discussing favourable ecosystem for social entrepreneurship development, Arjola presented some key findings from the research on the development of SEs as promoters of social inclusion and cohesion in Albania and the region, conducted in frame of the regional project CHALLENGES.

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Researching social enterprise developments in the Balkans, regional scientific conference The event brought together researchers from the Balkan region working in the fields of social enterprises, social entrepreneurship and social economy, sharing knowledge, discussing and debating on the latest research related to the social enterprises developments in the Balkan region, as well as strengthening the networks by establishing the Balkan Social Enterprise Research Network. The conference was organized in framework of the joint project implemented by five organizations from Albania, Macedonia and Kosovo.

Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Ariola Agolli, PA Director of Programs and Erila Haska, PA Research Assistant participated in the Regional Scientific Conference: “Researching Social Enterprise Developments in the Balkans”, organized on 17 –18 November, 2016 in Skopje, Macedonia.

Social entrepreneurship as means of financial sustainability of NGOs, regional meeting of NGO experts Partners Albania represented by Arjola Agolli, Director of Programs, participated in the regional NGO meeting “Social Entrepreneurship as Means of Financial Sustainability of NGOs” dedicated to the topic of social entrepreneurship in the Western Balkan region. The meeting was organized by GIZ GmbH on December 2nd 2016 in Skopje, Macedonia.

In the panel discussing the state of social entrepreneurship and legal framework in the Western Balkan, Arjola presented the situation of social enterprises in Albania, the legal framework they operate and development challenges. Partners Albania is working in this field for years, supporting the development of social enterprises in country through financially supporting start-ups, mentoring and exploring the role and function of social enterprises through research.

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Making the labor market work for young people in Albania RisiAlbania is a development project aimed at increasing the employment opportunities of young people. It is a Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) project, implemented by a consortium of partners comprised of Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation and Partners Albania for Change and Development. Risi Albania kicked off in 2013, with an approach that seeks the development of the private sector for the creation of new jobs and, on the other hand, facilitate the introduction of young people into the labor market. Project initiatives in the private sector development component are focused on three economic sub-sectors: Agro-processing, Tourism and ICT.

Women and Youth Employment &Increased Representation in Decision-making

AGIS - Intelligence Information System for Agriculture The creation of the AGIS Platform - Agriculture Information and Intelligence System enables the provision of detailed and reliable data in the field of agriculture. This system provides financial institutions with the necessary knowledge needed to make lending decisions, thereby improving agribusinesses’ access to financial products the banks offer. As a result, agro business gets more credit, invests more and creates new jobs.

Gjirokastra to venture into Experiential Tourism “Gjirokastra ExpeTours”, introduced by the Gjirokastra Foundation, comes as an innovative product; one of the five winners of the annual “Risi Turistike Award” 2016 competition, created by RisiAlbania for the Gjirokastra region.

New investments for the business services outsourcing sector Through the support of Risialbania, the Albanian Outsourcing Association has helped attract new companies to invest in Albania. As a result, five new outsourcing companies are established in Tirana, employing 530 employees (59% women). Become an entrepreneur by listening to the radio! The weekly broadcast “Të reja punësimi” (News on employment”) show on Radio Club FM, originally supported by RisiAlbania, continues to serve as a catalyst for young talented men and women, giving advice on how to find a good job, and even become a successful entrepreneur. The Kadiu brothers are an example for that. They run for more than a year now, the Electronic Line shop. They say that “We got the impetus for starting up our business by listening regularly to the radio program; at some point we did the math and decided to open our shop”.

http://risialbania.al 18


ICT Youth Camp Partners Albania launched in June 2016 the first “ICT Youth Camp” to increase knowledge and skills of young women and men in the field of Information and Communication Technology (ICT), part of a series of programs that will continue in 2017. The camp was attended by 27 young people selected through an open application process, students from the high schools and universities of Tirana, Shkodra, Përmeti, Burreli, Vlora, Durrësi, Elbasani, etc. During an intensive and interactive 4-day program, participants received technical information and knowledge on how to develop their ideas for products and services in the ICT field, were introduced to the strategy of market segmentation and positioning in the market, developed skills to sell the idea to potential investors, on building cooperation and partnerships, development of business plans, etc.

The best ideas developed during the camp and selected at the end of the program by a jury of experts and business representatives, will be further supported in the course of the project “Innovation Hub”.

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Women and Youth Employment &Increased Representation in Decision-making

The program also provided support and mentoring from local and international experts (of Telekom Albania) in the ICT field, presentation of the idea, and business development and management during the idea implementation.


Youth Bank Hub for Western Balkan and Turkey Partners Albania is a member of the regional network of five organizations implementing the “Youth Bank Hub for Western Balkans and Turkey” project. This four year project that started in January 2016 focuses in improving youth participation in decision making processes in Western Balkans and Turkey, through capacity building of youth organizations, advocacy initiatives and awareness-raising activities.

Partners Albania has developed the index of economic, social and political inclusion of youth. The index is the bases of 6-month monitoring conducted by PA and its partner organizations in the region. These reports are intended to be a helpful base for all stakeholders in policy development and advocacy efforts to increase the involvement of young people.

Women and Youth Employment &Increased Representation in Decision-making

The first index report for Albania was shared with youngsters, youth organizations and decision-makers at local level in Tirana, Shkodra and Durrësi. The feedback received in these round-tables will serve as input for the future index reports. The network will continue the monitoring efforts and will expand its membership with other youth organizations which will be mentored and supported to develop policy initiatives and other activities towards youth inclusion.

Meeting of partner organizations in Belgrade, May 2016

Colleagues of YBH4WBT network during a workshop on strategic planning, Serbia, July 2016

The YBH4WBT project is funded by EU and implemented by Foundation Ana i Vlade DivacSerbia, Partners Albania in Albania, Association for Education MLADIINFO INTERNATIONAL in Macedonia, NGO “Prima” in Montenegro and Community Volunteers Foundation in Turkey. 20


Philanthropy Awards 2016 Partners Albania organized on November 24th the gala ceremony where were announced the winners of Philanthropy Awards 2016. Since 2011 PA organizes this nationwide public competition, to express appreciation and gratitude to individuals, families and businesses who contribute to improving the quality of life in our society. This festive ceremony that coincided with the celebration of Partners Albania 15th anniversary, was attended by a large number of guests from the Albanian government and members of Albanian Parliament, representatives of diplomatic corps accredited in Albania, international institutions and donor agencies, representatives of the business sector, non-profit organizations and media. Award for Contribution at National Level was granted to Balfin Group, with motivation: For the wide contribution to the improvement of the quality of life of individuals and communities, the support to the innovative ideas of young entrepreneurs, the special attention towards institutions and organizations that provide services for children with Down syndrome, people with autistic spectrum disorders, the elderly and persons with terminal illnesses, as well as the awareness about environmental protection. The award was presented by Mrs. Valentina Leskaj, Vice Chair of Albanian Parliament. The Award for Contribution at Local Level was granted to the Foundation “Santa Maria Marianisti”, with motivation: For the contribution given to the education of children and youth from poor families and Roma and Egyptian communities, as well as for the provision of vocational training and increase of employment opportunities for women and girls in Lezha. The award was presented by Mr. Bledar Çuci, Minister of State for Local Government Issues. The Award for Individual Contribution was granted to Ms.Violeta Volumi, with motivation: For the establishment and development of the first ever infrastructure for audio books in Albanian, for the education of all Albanian-speaking community at home and abroad, and especially for visually impaired people. The award was presented by H.E. Mr. Christoph Graf, Ambassador of Switzerland in Tirana. Special Award “Pioneer of Philanthropy” was granted to the Baholli family, with motivation: For outstanding and wide contribution given during 1925 - 1935 in support of the economic development of Elbasan city, and promotion of education of young women and men through the construction of the city library “Qemal Baholli”. The award was presented by Mrs. Englantina Gjermeni, Minister of Urban Development.

Certificate of Appreciation was granted to “Fundjavë Ndryshe”, with motivation: For the volunteer activism that promotes solidarity and humanism for poverty alleviation and help to families and individuals in need. The Certificates of Appreciation were presented by Mr. Andi Dobrushi, Executive Director, Open Society Foundation for Albania.

Winners of the Philanthropy Awards 2016, with the distinguished guests presenters of the awards, and PA director.

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Philanthropy and Corporate Social Responsibility

Certificate of Appreciation was granted to Mrs. Sevim Arbana, with motivation: For the continuous contribution to the protection of human rights, alleviation of poverty and promotion of a fair and equitable society for all.


Monitoring the philanthropic activity in Albania As part of its work to promote philanthropy, Partners Albania started in 2015 the monitoring of philanthropic activity conducted in Albania through monitoring of media (including social media) and information resources from public and non-public institutions. The monitoring process is conducted on daily bases and focuses on the supported causes, nature and values of the donation, geographic coverage and donor’s nature. The findings are presented as monthly short summary reports that aim to foster the meaning and identification of this activity.

Throughout 2016 Partners Albania registered 279 donations totalling 185,893,382 ALL, 82% of which were monetary donations, 12% services and 6% goods/ products. The main field of donations is Economical Aid, while as regards the main beneficiary group, except for the General Public receiving 62.5% of donations, Children are the other beneficiary group receiving 28% of the donations. The main contributors are individuals, making 55% of the total donations and 58% of the total amount registered, followed by businesses carrying out 20% of the donations and 16% of the total amount registered. Beneficiaries

Philanthropy and Corporate Social Responsibility

Fields of donation

Type of donations

Value of donations by donors nature

Visit the link in PA website for monthly and annually philanthropic activity monitoring reports since 2015: www.partnersalbania.org/

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Celebrating Solidarity In October 2016 Partners Albania started the implementation of the project “Celebrating solidarity”. Through this project, six partner organizations from Albania, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Poland, Serbia and Hungary are working to promote philanthropy and examples of solidarity in times of crises. This effort will take a look back at the European history and great examples of solidarity between people and nations, as a road map for future generations. Understanding our common history and values is particularly important when it comes to youth and their perception of solidarity. The Solidarity Quiz was one of the first online applications developed as part of this initiative. It aimed to better understand the young people’s approach to solidarity and the role they can play in the community. More then 1100 youngsters from Albania took the quiz, resulting in Visionary and Inspirational as two main roles young Albanians play in their community.

Visit in the migrant day-center Mikaliste in Belgrade, a great example of solidarity in times of crises, October 2016

The project “Celebrating solidarity” is implemented by 6 organizations respectively Partners Albania in Albania, Ana and Vlade Divac Foundation in Serbia, Input Output Foundation in Poland, Demnet Hun in Hungary, Multi Kulti Collective in Bulgaria, and Mladiinfo International in Macedonia. The project is supported by the Europe for Citizens Programme of the European Union.

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Philanthropy and Corporate Social Responsibility

During the partner organizations meeting in Belgrade, October 2016


Implementing the law on whistleblowers and whistleblowers protection Partners Albania in cooperation with the National Coordinator on Anti-corruption issues and the Chief Inspector of the High Inspectorate on Audit of Assets and Conflict of Interests, with the support of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Tirana, are working to implement the Law on Whistle-blowing and whistle-blowers’ protection. Law No. 60/2016 “On Whistle blowing and the Protection of Whistle blowers” aims at preventing and fighting corruption in the public and private sectors, protecting individuals signalising suspected corruption practices in their workplace, and stimulating whistle blowing on corruptive activities or practices. PA drafted the sub-legal acts and guidelines, with the assistance of local and international experts, through a wide public consultation process. About 2000 public institutions at central level and state agencies, municipalities, businesses, civil society organizations, media representatives, and donors and international development agencies in Albania became part of

the public consultative process. Other public information means were used as well. In addition, PA organized six regional consultative meetings in Tirana, Shkodra, Elbasani, Korca and Fieri with the participation of about 250 representatives from public and private sector, civil society and media.

Transparent and Accountable Governance

Partners Albania conducted a wide public information media campaign through visual, written and social media, as well as city lights billboards over the city. This awareness media campaign was considered very important for a wider public information on the whistleblowing and the protection the legislation provides for the whistleblowers.

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LevizAlbania Project

www.levizalbania.al

“LevizAlbania” is SDC project implemented by a consortium of three organizations: Open Society for Albania, Partners Albania and Co-Plan. LevizAlbania supports local democracy in the country through the cultivation of a community-based local civil society, which affects and stimulates demand for good governance. During 2016, LevizAbania concluded two Call for Applications addressed to civil society organizations, individuals and their groups. LevizAlbania awarded 41 projects submitted by 13 individuals and 28 NPOs, from Dibër, Durrës, Elbasan, Kukës, Lezhë, Shkodër, Tiranë etc. The Third Call for Ideas was launched in October 2016. In support of LevizAlbania, in order to address the needs of beneficiaries and interested applicants, PA is offering a wide assistance program. In this framework, PA is offering online and onsite training and assistance, supporting networking in territories larger than those in which CSOs operate, and their expertise to successfully advocate in the local decision-making.

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Transparent and Accountable Governance

During the training programs on “Community Mobilization”, organized in Tirana, Shkodra and Korça, with participation of about 50 NPOs and individuals from these regions, November 2016


Participatory budgeting at central and local governance Participation and involvement of CSOs in central and local decision making is a key factor to ensure laws, policies and strategies respond to the needs and priorities of citizens.

Transparent and Accountable Governance

Following the initiative on Participatory Budgeting at local level, started in 2015, PA contributed during 2016 to the improvement of the capacities of three NPOs’ (CSDC Durres, Youth Committee in Lezha and Youth Movement for Democracy in Puka) engaged in the project to design and implement a successful process on Participatory Budgeting at local level.

Aiming to develop CSOs advocacy skills, to be successful in addressing their interest groups priority issues in the budgets of the respective Ministries, PA conducted on July two training sessions on issues related to “Medium-term budgetary program 2016-2018” and “Sectorial guides of the Ministry of Education and Sports and Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth”. The training sessions were conducted by experts from Partners Albania and Prof. Dr. Arben Malaj. Partners Albania organized round-tables with representatives of 30 CSOs to discuss on priority issues that will influence Draft Budget 2017 and the Medium Term Budget Program of the Ministry of Education and Sports and the Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth. This initiative was supported by Olof Palme International Center and the Open Society Foundation for Albania. 26

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www.e-qeverisjavendore.com

Better local governance through transparency and accountability of municipal councils

As part of its work towards increasing transparency and accountability at local level, good governance and fight against corruption, Partners Albania implemented during 2016 a pilot initiative to monitor the work of municipal councils in Lezha and Kucova. As part of this initiative, Partners Albania built an online monitoring platform e-qeverisjavendore.com, which interested citizens and stakeholders had the opportunity to follow the City Council meetings, be informed on Council decisions and get involved and advocate for priority issues that concern their community. Throughout 2016, the platform was updated with the full footage of 25 Municipal Council meetings, 138 draft decisions proposed by the municipal staff, counsellors discussions on drafts, the decisions adopted by the Council as well as the implementation progress of these decisions. The e-qeverisjavendore.com platform was established in framework of the pilot initiative “Towards a better local governance through increased transparency and accountability of municipal councils�, implemented by Partners Albania with the support of the US Embassy in Tirana.

Urban Governance/Integrity Building in South East Europe Urban Partnership (UPPII). Partners Albania is part of a regional consortium of organizations from Albania, Serbia, Macedonia and Croatia, which are implementing the component Urban Governance / Integrity Construction in Eastern Europe - phase II of the Urban Partnership Program of the World Bank Group (UPPII). Under this program, Partners Albania worked with the municipality of Berat, Elbasan and Fier to draft the Anticorruption Strategy. As part of the process, the Guiding Coalitions in the municipalities in focus, conducted the in depth diagnosis of the work of the institution, prioritising the areas most vulnerable to corruption and their effect in the lives of citizens and the image of the municipality.

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Transparent and Accountable Governance

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Partners Albania held on December 6, 2016, in the Municipality of Fier, the training program “Building Integrity in Local Government”. Participants were representatives of Elbasani, Fieri, Berati and Kucova municipalities who shared and discussed with each other the best practices and challenges in increasing citizen participation in decisionmaking processes, anti-corruption initiatives, and professional ethical issues in exercising their functions. As part of this regional initiative, Ariola Agolli, PA Director of Programs together with the Mayors of the participating municipalities attended the Mayor’s Symposium, held in Graz, Austria on 29 February - 1 March 2016. In this international event that brought together 160 representatives of central and local institutions, mayors, anticorruption experts, non-governmental organizations and other relevant stakeholders, participants shared best practices and experiences, and discussed on the challenges of urban governance.

Facilitating public input on the World Bank strategy in Albania

Transparent and Accountable Governance

During October- December 2016, Partners Albania on behalf of the World Bank facilitated three regional dialogues in Elbasan, Peshkopi and Permet, with Local Government representatives, public institutions, non profit organizations, businesses, local community and youth groups. In the meetings were discussed the views on development opportunities for local and regional socio-economic issues, emerging results, constraints and feedback on the World Bank Group’s current activities. Furthermore, the meetings served to get input for the future programs of World Bank.

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Partners Network Meeting The Partners Network centers from 19 countries from Europe, Middle East, the Americas and Africa, met in DC on November 7-13, 2016 for the Annual Meeting which coincided with the elections in USA. Juliana Hoxha, Partners Albania Director and Elona Kapexhiu, Communication Manager were part of this one week visit. Inevitably, the election result and how that is expected to influence US and the rest of the world were part of formal meetings and informal discussions. Juliana Hoxha, Partners Albania Director was one of the speakers of an innovative round-table meeting cohosted by PartnersGlobal and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace to discuss how the US based organizations are attempting to connect work on advancing democracy abroad and at home. In the recent years, Western democracies are experiencing convergence between political challenges they face at home and those they help to seek other countries overcome, from citizen alienation and rising intolerance to new currents of populism and radicalism. Mrs. Hoxha was also one of the key speakers in the workshop held at John Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, focusing on organizational profitability and resilience, factors for NGO success. The reception hosted by Partners Global at their DC office represented a great opportunity for Partners members to network with DC based institutions and organizations working in US and globally.

The members of Partners Network during their Annual Meeting focusing on issues of network strengthening and effective cooperation and communication.

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Transparent and Accountable Governance

The network visited Baltimore were they met with NGOs, donor agencies, police officials and young activists discussing a number of interest issues such as mediation and conflict resolution, community – police relations, funding strategies, youth activism etc.


Partners Albania in media focus

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New publications Monitoring Matrix on Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development, Country Report for Albania 2016 presents the findings from the monitoring of practical and legal framework for the development of civil society. The monitoring of the Matrix is implemented in seven Western Balkan countries and Turkey, by the member organizations of the Balkan Civil Society Development Network. The monitoring in Albania is conducted by Partners Albania.

The Manual on “Financial Management of NPOs and Regulatory Framework, second edition” (2016) presents the basic concepts of financial management, a comprehensive view of accounting systems and reporting, internal controls, budgeting process, financial analysis and taxes applied to NPOs by the state. The updated manual reflects the changes occurred in the legal and fiscal framework that regulates the activity of NPOs and responds to the new dynamics of the sector’s development. For copies of the publication please contact Partners Albania office.

CSOs Development, Sustainability and Inclusiveness in Participatory Processes is a guide helping NPO leaders in issues related to organizational development and management, transparency and sustainability, and inclusiveness in policy and decision making. This publication was produced in frame of Partners Albania’s NPO Academy. The publication was financially supported by the Official Development Assistance of the Slovak Republic – SlovakAid.

Challenges and opportunities for employment of marginalized groups by social enterprises study, is another contribution Partners Albania offers in promoting economic and social development, through the provision of concrete recommendations based on the analysis of the situation in the country. It is part of a research conducted in Albania, Macedonia and Kosovo.

This report reflects the philanthropic activity in Albania during 2016 launched in a synthesized way from Partners Albania, based on daily monitoring and monthly reporting. The report analyses the main sectors and issues supported, nature and value of the donations, geographic coverage and also the nature of donors and beneficiaries.

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Partners Albania—15 years of growing a stronger democracy and 15 years Partners Albania photo album, are two publications depicting Partners Albania 15 years journey.

The winners of Philanthropy Awards over the years.

The winners of Green Ideas Competition since 2012.

Partners Albania uses several channels to inform supporters and beneficiaries about activities and discuss the impact of its work. Annual report 2015, provides an overview of our work, supporters and beneficiaries.

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Toward a Sustainable Society, is a quarterly newsletter distributed electronically and accessible via PA website.


Finances

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2016

Annual Report 2016  
Annual Report 2016  
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