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QUARTERLY NEWSLETTER

EDITION NO. 63

JUNE 2017

TOWARDS A SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY In this issue:

National competition

-Winners of the national competition “Green Ideas 2017” page 1 -Celebrating solidarity page 2-3 -Monitoring philanthropic activity in Albania page 3 -NPO Academy 2017! page 4 -Financially viable civil society =Active civil society -Partners Albania, member of BCSDN Board -BCSDN regional conference on the Role of CSOs in promoting civic space page 5 -Implementing the Law on Whistleblowing and whistleblowers protection page 6 -LevizAlbania Project page 7 -ICT Youth Camp page 8 -Education of young job seekers in the banking sector page 9 -Making the labor market work for young people in Albania page 10

Would you like to join

The Albanian Crowd

www.thealbaniancrowd.org

?

Green Ideas 2017

Partners Albania organized on May 25 – 26, 2017 in Tirana, the National Competition “Green Ideas 2017”. This is the sixth year that Partners Albania organizes this competition, aiming to support initiatives that promote social inclusion, integration, employment and local economic development through ideas that are environmentally friendly. The novelty lies in cooperation and creation of a joint seed fund from national companies and international donor institutions, with institutional support of Rockefeller Brothers Fund (RBF). During the two days of the competition, 22 individuals, civil society organizations and small businesses selected from the first phase, presented their ideas before the evaluation panel of expert who selected the three best ideas.

Art Recycling

the idea of the Development Alternative Resource Center (DARC) aims to establish a small business for the production and sale of products/objects built with recycling materials. In addition, the idea aims to create opportunities for youngsters to be trained and learn art through recycling, as well as increase community awareness on the use of the recycled materials.

Production and Trade of Aroma Therapy Products

will be implemented by Aroma Therapy Albania, a small business that aims to create an authentic Albanian aroma-therapy cosmetic line of healthy, chemical free products, made from local natural raw materials.

“Sofra e Anéve”, (Grandma’s cooking)

the idea of Gjirokastra Foundation aims to develop culinary tourism tours in the city of Gjirokastra, relying on the rich tradition of home cooking. The idea aims as well to promote the local agricultural products, diversification of tourism services and increase of employment.

Each of the winning ideas will receive funding in the amount of 800,000 ALL. The co-funders are Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Credins Bank and Telekom Albania. The wining ideas of the national competition will participate in the regional competition that will be organized by the Balkan Green Foundation, end of July 2017 in Montenegro.

The Albanian Crowd is an interactive online platform

of Albanian NPOs and social enterprises. 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. It supports already 146 member organizations from across the country, operating in different fields. Since it was launched, the platform counts over 20,500 visitors, more than 2 million hits from nearly 150 countries from all continents. Join the Albanian Crowd by completing the online registration form available at: http://www.thealbaniancrowd.org/aplikimi-en/

PARTNERS ALBANIA IS A MEMBER OF PARTNERS GLOBAL NETWORK

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Celebrating Solidarity Partners Albania, as part of its efforts to promote the values and good examples of collaboration and solidarity with people in need, organized during May and June the “Festival of Solidarity”, which consisted in a series of activities celebrating understanding, tolerance, solidarity, and support among people. This campaign aimed to foster the debate and promote solidarity as a key value of the European Union. The Festival of Solidarity was organized simultaneously in Bulgaria, Serbia and Macedonia by PA partner organizations in this campaign.

Caring for the elderly people

Partners Albania mobilized some companies and young volunteers, who donated packages with supplies and products to help improve the stay of the Elderly House residents. The visitors spent a few hours with elders, making their day special.

Solidarity Talk

On June 16th 2017, Partners Albania organized a ”Solidarity Talk“, part of which was the showing of a film prepared by Partners Albania, promoting the Albanian tradition of solidarity since 19th century to nowadays. Representatives of civil society, media, business and public sectors shared their experience and perspective on solidarity. The discussion was followed by the “Solidarity Exhibition“, featuring the contribution of civil society organizations and civic initiatives in support of vulnerable groups, victims of crises or natural disasters, and other solidarity campaigns.

TOWARDS A SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY

Solidarity Walk

Partners Albania in cooperation with the Dajti Alpino Tourist Association organized the Tujan’s peak climbing, on May 21st. The purpose of this activity was to convey the important message of group solidarity. Participants had the opportunity to hear stories from young and experienced climbers, on the challenges they faced and the solidarity acts that have accompanied them during these experiences.

Make a child happy!

Partners Albania launched a campaign for collecting gifts for children in need, as an act to show them the care and support of the society. The books, toys and clothes collected through the campaign, were donated to the children of the SOS village and children with special needs of the day care center “Standing Together”.

Solidarity against hunger

Partners Albania joined the Food Bank Albania campaign “Solidarity Against Hunger“. In only two days, our volunteers managed to collect 400 kg of food products donated by citizens in some of the supermarkets in Tirana. The donated food were distributed to families in need.

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www.museumofsolidarity.eu Museum of Solidarity (www.museumofsolidarity.eu) is an online collection of stories about solidarity and social causes supported in Albania, Bulgaria, Hungary, Macedonia, Poland and Serbia. Partners Albania has identified and prepared several audio-visual stories from Albania. The museum is continuously being enriched with other stories and information. The Museum is part of the project “Celebrating Solidarity”, which is supported by the Europe for Citizens Programme of the European Union.

Monitoring of philanthropic activity in Albania

Fields of donation

Geographical distribution of beneficiaries and donors

Beneficiaries

TOWARDS A SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY

Throughout the 3rd quarter of 2017, from the daily monitoring of philanthropic activity carried out by Partners Albania, were registered 36 cases of donations in the amount of 9,431,413 ALL, which were monetary donations, services and goods / products. The main field of donations ​​ for this period was Support to Marginalized Groups where Children & Youth constitute the largest group of beneficiaries. More detailed data on the supported causes, nature and values of ​​ donation, geographical coverage and the nature of donors and beneficiaries, are available in the monthly monitoring reports since 2015, at the following link in PA’s website: http://partnersalbania.org/programs/monitoring-of-philanthropic-activity-in-albania-en/

Donors

Value of donation according to donor’s nature

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On June 23rd, Partners Albania successfully completed the NPO Academy program for the 4th group of participants, representatives of NPOs from across Albania. Since 2015, around 60 NPO executives have benefited knowledge and skills development, cooperation, networking and partnership opportunities with similar organizations in Albania and abroad. During February - June, PA delivered 10 lectures for the 16 selected participants in this round, and organized a study visit to Slovakia from 29 May - 3 June. The lectures were focused on a series of topics related to organizational development and sustainability, as well as effective participation in policy and decision-making processes.

Share of experiences and best practices in a series of issues related to the sector development and sustainability, involvement in policy-making processes at local and central level, as well as discussions on partnership opportunities, were in the focus of the inspirational meetings with 10 Slovak organizations, during the study visit program.

During the graduation ceremony, NPO Academy 2017 participants discussed the program achievements and results, as well as future plans for the implementation of acquired knowledge and skills.

On June 19th, PA announced the 5th call for participation in the NPO Academy program that will be implemented during September 2017 - April 2018. In this round will participate 18 representatives of NPOs nationwide. NPO Academy is implemented by Partners Albania in cooperation with Partners for Democratic Change Slovakia (PDCS) in framework of the project “Pillars of civil society: More effective cooperation between civil and state sector in Albania�, financially supported by Slovak Aid - Official Development Assistance of the Slovak Republic.

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Graduation of NPO Academy 2017 participants


Financially viable civil society = Active civil society

“Developing a Business Model for NPOs” and “Knowing your market and value proposition” were two modules introduced during the training sessions which were followed by individual coaching and mentoring, assisting the NPOs to identify potential fee-for products and services they can provide, as well as getting to know their competitors through market analyses.

In the upcoming months, participants are expected to finalyze the in - depth analysis of identified products and services. The project “Financially viable civil society = Active civil society” is implemented by Partners Albania in framework of Civil Society Watchdog and Advocacy Program supported by the Public Affairs Office of the United States Embassy in Tirana.

TOWARDS A SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY

During April – June 2017, Partners Albania provided training, assistance and coaching to the nine participating NPOs in its latest initiative aiming to strengthen financial sustainability of the organizations through the development of new business models in order to generate revenues as an alternative source of income.

Partners Albania, part of the BCSDN Board

As part of their 9th Annual Council Meeting, BCSDN held the new Board elections where Klotilda Kosta, PA Director of Programs, was one of the new members elected.

BCSDN Regional Conference: The Role of CSOs in Promoting Civic Space On June 21st, 2017, BCSDN network where Partners Albania is a member since 2011, organized in Skopje the regional conference The Role of CSOs in Promoting Civic Space where were discussed ways of promoting civic space and fostering enabling environment for civil society. The event gathered more than 40 CSO representatives from Macedonia, the Western Balkans and Europe. As a speaker in the conference, Klotilda Tavani, PA Director of Programs talked about the PA experience in monitoring the enabling environment for civil society development in Albania based on the Monitoring Matrix, and challenges of advocacy efforts to create an enabling environment for civil society.

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Implementing the Law on whistleblowing 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 (HIDAACI), with the support of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Tirana, are working to ensure a complete legal framework on whistleblowing and whistleblowers’ protection, and to increase public awareness on this new legislation. To ensure a more effective implementation of the law, Partners Albania conducted a Training for Trainers Program on the whistleblowing and whistleblowers protection legislation, to be implemented by the Albanian School of Public Administration (ASPA). As part of the program, representatives of the responsible units for the whistleblowing in the public institutions were trained, increasing their capacities with regards to the law implementation.

TOWARDS A SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY

During this period, Partners Albania facilitated a training program for 30 inspectors of HIDAACI, focusing on various issues such as: whistleblowing and whistleblower protection Law and implementation; Knowledge of the whistleblowing structures and the responsible units; Knowledge of administrative investigation procedures; the rights and protection of the whistleblower; violations and administrative measures etc.

On June 7-9, Partners Albania organized a study visit to the Netherlands, of a delegation with representatives from HIDAACI. Participants met with senior executives of the House of Whistle blowers, Transparency International, Confederation of Trade Unions, Netherlands Post, Municipality of Amsterdam, Rabo Bank and several other institutions, discussing on best practices in place and implementation possibilities in Albania.

During June-July, Partners Albania is implementing a wide public awareness campaign with regards to the coming into force of the whistleblowing legislation for the private sector. The campaign consists in a series of visual elements, and a TV ad.

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www.levizalbania.al Strengthening civil society organizations for effective inclusiveness and participation in policy and decision making In cooperation with LevizAlbania project, Partners Albania continues to build capacities of civil society organizations for effective inclusiveness and participation in policy and decision making. Partners Albania is providing tailor made capacity building programs online and onsite, aiming to address the needs of project beneficiaries and interested applicants, about the concepts, principles and techniques of participation in local democracy in Albania, for an efficient implementation of local initiatives funded by the project. During April - June, Partners Albania provided several trainings online and onsite, for more than 40 representatives of CSOs and activists of civil society. The training programs focused on Project Proposals Writing, Community Mobilization and Strategic Planning. Trajnimi në Shkrimin e Projekteve, Tiranë, prill 2017

Beside training, the capacity building programs have also consisted in provision of individual support to the beneficiaries of LevizAlbania to successfully implement their initiatives. On 24th - 28th of April 2017, LevizAlbania organized the Local Democracy Week. The two-year journey of this project which aims at strengthening local democracy through civic actions for good governance and the impact of the initiatives by civil society organizations and individuals were discussed in various formats such as forums, conferences, theater performances and social events.

Trajnimi online në Planifikimin Strategjik, qershor 2017

Online sessions for sharing experiences and regional practices for enhancing local democracy, with representatives of GAP institute of Kosovo and GONG in Croatia.

Sharing successful experiences and models of civic actions from Switzerland The Swiss model of using petitions and referendums initiated by citizens related to local policies, investments, transparency, accountability and citizen participation in local decision making has affected directly the quality of local governance in this country. Aiming to share these models and experiences for which Switzerland is recognized as a success story, a delegation from LevizAlbania held an official visit where among others, they had a productive meeting with the new Mayor of Geneva municipality, Mr. Remi Pagany.

The delegation from Albania was led by representatives of the consortium implementing LevizAlbania, Andi Dobrushi, Director of Open Society Foundation for Albania, Juliana Hoxha, Executive Director of Partners Albania, Dritan Shutina, Executive Director of Co-Plan and Valbona Kuko, Executive Director of LevizAlbania

During this visit, LevizAlbania team had a meeting with the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) in Bern, which is the funder of LevizAlbania project. LevizAlbania launched in May, the winners of the 3rd Call for projects. During this round were funded 33 projects presented by 24 organizations and 9 individuals. Click the picture on the right to know more about the winning projects.

The representatives of SDC highly appreciated that the union of the expertise from the three organizations implementing LevizAlbania project is a success story which has started to give concrete results.

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Particular importance has been given to networking, collaboration, and sharing of best practices from the region. Partners Albania organized two online sessions where experts of Gong organization from Croatia and the Institute for Advanced Studies – GAP from Kosova discussed and presented to the Albanian colleagues good practices from their organizations’ experiences.


Partners Albania organized during this period, two ICT Youth Camps for Albanian youngsters interested in Information and Communication Technology. The camp held in June was the last of this series of activities organized in the framework of the project “Innovation Hub”, which started one year ago. Around 125 young people aged 17-30 benefited from the four ICT Youth camps organized during June 2016-June 2017. Participants were students of general and professional high schools, university students and other young people interested in ICT, from across the country. The camp was designed and tailored by ICT and business experts as a training and mentoring 4-day program helping young participants to increase their knowledge and skills in the ICT field, and develop business plans to turn their ideas into successful enterprises competitive in the market.

ICT Youth Camps were organized in framework of the project “Innovation Hub”, implemented by the Ministry for Public Administration and Innovation, Partners Albania for Change and Development and the Institute for Research and Development Barleti, with the support of IADSA.

ICT Youth Camp, April 2017

ICT Youth Camp, June 2017

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During this intensive program, youngsters worked in teams to develop their concrete ideas for products and services in the ICT field. At the end of the program, the 25 ideas developed during the camps were presented by the participants before a jury of experts and business representatives.


Partners Albania in cooperation with the Albanian Association of Banks, conducted during March – May 2017, the Education of Young Job seekers in Banking Sector program for the first group of 12 students of economic sciences, aiming to contribute to the improvement of employment opportunities for the Albanian youngsters who intend to follow a banking career. The program offers education and development opportunities through contemporary learning approaches and multidimensional experience exchange, as well as opportunities for interactive exchange and exposure in the banking sector. Experts of Partners Albania, the Albanian Association of Banks, and executives of Alpha Bank Albania, Raiffeisen Bank Albania, BKT and Tirana Bank were lecturers in the program.

Presentation of the program by Mrs. Juliana Hoxha, PA Director and Mr. Spiro Brumbulli, Secretary General of the Albanian Association of Banks

“Preparation for a job interview and recruitment process” – the 4th lecture delivered by Mrs. Jonida Alite, Training Director at Partners Albania and Mrs. Junida Katroshi, AAB

“The banking system in Albania. History and sector development trends” , the first lecture held by Mr.Orfea Dhuci, Economic Advisor, Alpha Bank

“Bank as an institution – organizational structure, functions, banking products and services” – lecture delivered by Anisa Keri, HR Department, -Raiffeisen Bank Albania

I“Recruitment challenges and career in the banking sector” – the 3rd lecture delivered by Mrs. Arjana Tushi, Human Resources Department Manager at BKT

“Customer care and sales” – lecture delivered by Mrs. Jonida Alite, Training Director at Partners Albania and Lutjana Konomi, PR and Marketing Department Manager at Tirana Bank

Graduation ceremony of the first 12 participants in the program

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The call for applications for the 2nd group of participants in this program will be launched in October.


Making the labor market work for young people in Albania Started in 2013, RisiAlbania is a youth employment project that focuses on achieving systemic changes in the Albanian labour market in order to improve access to employment opportunities for young women and men. RisiAlbania is a Swiss Development Cooperation (SDC) project implemented by Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation and Partners Albania. Some of the main activities of the RisiAlbania for this period were:

Albanian Tourist Guides – second phase of certification

This second phase of the certification for 52 tourist guides in Albania was concluded in a ceremony organized in the premises of the MoEDTTE. National Association of Tourist Guides in Albania supported by Risi, was again one of the key partners of the Ministry in the selection process through the testing of 69 applications. From June 2017, Albania counts a total of 211 certified tourist guides, who are part of the market and ready to offer their services to the visitors.

Hospitality and Tourism Academy celebrates the success in training and employment of young people RisiAlbania, has supported Hospitality and Tourism Academy to train and employ about 180 unemployed young people in different areas of Tourism and Hospitality sector, and to motivate other youngsters to join the academy courses and get a job afterwards. The employment rate of the graduates is 98% and the demand from the businesses is large. Graduation ceremony to celebrate the training and employment of around 180 young people in high class hotels and restaurants of Tirana, brought together young people, businesses and main institutions supporting the Academy, in a festive event organized on April 20th. Guests of honor in this event were the Minister of Youth and Social Welfare Mrs. Olta Xhacka, the Mayor of Tirana, Mr. Erion Veliaj, and Deputy Head of Mission, Embassy of Switzerland in Albania Mr. Philipp Keller.

Graduation ceremony of the young participants in the Hospitality and Tourism Academy, April 2017.

Bridging Swiss and Albanian IT business on outsourcing

“Do you have an idea”, a successful entrepreneurial TV Show

On 26-27 April 2017, RisiAlbania facilitated the exploratory visit in Albania, of two representatives from the Swiss VET organization for ICT, aiming to establish links with Albanian IT Association and IT businesses on outsourcing.

“Do you have an idea”, an entrepreneurial TV Programme launched in late February by Vizion Plus, and supported by RisiAlbania was successfully closed after 14 episodes.

After this first visit, it was decided that a B2B event between Swiss and Albanian IT companies will be organized in early 2018 in Albania, with the aim to identify potentials for joint business co-operation. More information about this initiative can be found in: https://www.swissict-on-tour.ch/

Around 50 individuals presented their innovative products and business ideas to a panel of experts and businesspeople. The three winners together with other 19 participants were provided support by members of the jury to launch their businesses.

Partners Albania is an independent Albanian NPO established in 2001, working to support civil society and facilitate inter-sector cooperation in order to strengthen democratic institutions and advance economic development. Partners Albania is a member of Partners Network, a partnership of 22 independent, local organizations in Europe, the Americas, Africa and the Middle East working for peaceful and democratic change.

Rruga Sulejman Delvina, N.18, H.8, Ap. 12, 1022, Tirana, Albania, PO Box 2418/1 Tel. Fax: 04 2254881 Email: partners@partnersalbania.org http://www.partnersalbania.org Follow Partners Albania in: Facebook, Linkedin, Youtube Visit The Albanian Crowd, the online platform of NPOs and social enterprises in Albania

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Following the need of the tourism market for tourist guides in Albania, during April – May 2017, the Ministry of Economic Development, Tourism, Trade & Entrepreneurship (MoEDTTE) launched an examination process for aspiring tourist guides in Albania.

Partners Albania Newsletter "Towards a Sustainable Society"  

Edition 63, June 2017

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