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Partners Albania Center for Change and Conflict Management QUARTERLY NEWSLETTER

EDITION NO. 55

TOWARDS A SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY

In this number: -The Idea from Albania wins in the Regional Competition Philanthropy for Green Ideas, July 2014 page 1 Creating an Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development in Albania page 2 New Projects -Local Democracy Promotion Project -“Young entrepreneurs of Albania” -Social Innovation Europe -Challenges and Opportunities for Employment of Marginalized Groups by Social Enterprises page 3 -International Debate on Social Enterprises -JoiEU Project page 4 -Making Labor Market Work for Young People in Albania -Study Visit on Professional Education and Youth Employment page 5 -Towards an Alternative Tourism -IPA Grantees Fair page 6 -Increasing Transparency and Accountability in E-Procurement -Regional consultation workshops of WB -Training for NGOs - Social Media and Branding page 7 Participation in International Events page 8 -THE ALBANIAN CROWD, an interactive platform for NPOs and SE in Albania page 9

Announcement Partners Albania has announced the call for nominations for the Philanthropy Award 2014! The successful experience started in 2011 has already become a tradition, to express the appreciation and gratitude to all businesses entities and individuals that support social causes in their communities and throughout the country.

JULY - OCTOBER 2014

The Idea from Albania wins in the Regional Competition: Philanthropy for Green Ideas 2014 “Green Sight, Castle2Castle” idea of the Albanian organization GO2 wins in the Fifth Annual Forum on the Development of Philanthropy in the Western Balkans: Philanthropy for Green Ideas held on July 24–27, 2014 in Llogara, Albania. This is the second award for this initiative that promotes tourism through bicycle tour guides in the region of Shkodra, following the award received at the national competition “Green Ideas 2014” organized by Partners Albania in March this year. Philanthropy for Green Ideas is a regional competition that encourages communities to generate business ideas, utilizing local resources and revitalizing traditions of production and communitybased markets in an environmentally-friendly way. This regional event is organized by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund in cooperation with partner foundations from Albania, Kosovo, Montenegro, Macedonia and Serbia. Partners Albania is the RBF’ partner organization in Albania. As part of the Regional Forum, 15 participants from these countries presented their innovative ideas out of which were selected three winners. One of the winning ideas of this year was the idea from Albania “Green Sight, Castle2Castle” of the organization GO2. Beside “Green Sight, Castle2Castle” initiative, Albania was represented in the Regional Forum also by the two other winning ideas of the national competition: “Atlantid Beach Eco Camp” of Tirana Express, an idea aimed to develop sustainable tourism in the area of Ishmi, Durrës, and “Recycling jeans” of People and Ideas organization, an idea of using cloth bags made of recycled jeans, to replace plastic bags in the shopping malls and supermarkets. For more information on the participating ideas from Albania click here: http://issuu.com/partners-albania/docs/winners_green_ ideas_2014 The two other winning ideas of the Regional Forum for this year were of the representatives from Serbia, Igor Kojcic- Circulating Fruit and Vegetable Dryer and Stevan Covic - Worm Farm.

Visit Partners Albania website for information on nomination procedures and deadlines: www.partnersalbania.org

We are happy to present Partners Albania Annual Report 2013, highlighting our main activities and results during 2013. Last year has been very dynamic and challenging, but also a year of achievements and successes. Click here to read our Annual Report 2013.

MEMBER OF PARTNERS FOR DEMOCRATIC CHANGE INTERNATIONAL

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Creating an Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development in Albania

Advocacy on Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development Following the National Conference “Social Partners-Time for Action”, organized by PA on 13 and 16 December 2013, the process for addressing the issues raised in the conference has progressed as follows:

The National Council for Civil Society The proposal for the establishment of The National Council for Civil Society, presented to the Prime-minister office by the Working Group for the Support to Civil Society, received a positive feedback by the line Ministries (Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth, and the Ministry of Integration). Following, a technical group to advance the establishment of the Council was created, with representatives from the Unit for Strategic Planning and Donor Coordination in the Council of Ministers, Ministry of Integration, Agency for the Support of Civil Society, and Juliana Hoxha, PA director as representative of Civil Society. In its first meeting in October, the technical group decided to start the work for the preparation of the draft-law on establishment of the Council, with the assistance of a legal expert. In addition it was drafted a working plan to mobilize other government structures to give input on the draft law and also opening of a wide consultation with the civil society sector. After the consultation process, it is aimed that the draft law is presented to the Parliament structures within December 2014-January 2015. Social Procurement Partners Albania is working to develop a Policy Paper on Social Procurement, to facilitate the participation of expert CSOs in offering public social services through a fair and transparent procurement process. This process is being implemented with the assistance of the European Center for Non-for-Profit Law (ECNL). During October, PA and ECNL expert conducted a series of meetings with the Public Procurement Agency, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth, Unit for Strategic Planning and Donor Coordination in the Council of Ministers, National Social Service, UNICEF, several municipalities and CSOs in Tirana and four other regions, discussing the current situation and ways to improve the legal and practical aspects related to this issue.

During the focus group meeting of the ECNL expert Luben Panov with NGOs, 29.10.14

The Policy Paper will be shared and consulted with all relevant stakeholders to decide on the following steps to implement the recommendations it will provide.

Monitoring Matrix on Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development Partners Albania is conducting The survey is part of a regional initiative a nationwide survey with about implemented in the Western Balkan 100 civil society organizations, to countries and Turkey by member assess the practical implementation organizations of the Balkan Civil Society of laws, policies and regulations Development Network (BCSDN), in a joint that affect civic engagement and effort to monitor and analyze the enabling enabling environment for civil environment for CSOs at country and society organizations in Albania. regional level. This assessment will serve for the Monitoring Matrix on Enabling Environment preparation of the second annual for Civil Society Development is a tool report of the Monitoring Matrix developed by BCSDN members, which on Enabling Environment for Civil aims to define a desired optimum situation Society Development in Albania. for civil society to function and develop effectively.

Monitoring Matrix has been adopted by the Department of Enlargement of the European Union as part of the strategy to support civil society in the Western Balkans. Find here the first country report for Albania: http://www. partnersalbania.org/Albania_ Country_Report.pdf or click here for the regional report: www.monitoringmatrix.net

The work for creation of an enabling environment for civil society in Albania is supported by Olof Palme International Center in Albania through Swedish government funds, in framework of the project “Increase Citizen Participation in Policy Making and Implementation”, and EU through the regional project “Balkan Civil Society Acquis – Strengthening the Advocacy and Monitoring Potential and Capacities of CSOs” implemented by BCSDN members in Western Balkan countries and Turkey.

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TOWARDS A SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY

Charter for Civil Society As a result of discussions in Parliament during June - July 2014 and the agreement from the Commission of Laws, Public Administration and Human Rights it was organized a public hearing session on the Charter for Civil Society. The Sub commission on Human Rights led by Vasilika Hysi, MP, called this session on October 22, with a wide participation from civil society organizations, international organizations and donors agencies, representatives of government and MPs. The Working Group for the Support to Civil Society presented The Charter, its principles and importance of this document for the institutionalization of the relationship between the state and Civil Society. All stakeholders reached a common understanding on the relevance of this document. At the end of the session it was decided that the Charter will be adopted in the form of a Resolution by a technical team of experts from Parliament and Civil Society. The Resolution will then be presented for approval to the plenary session of the Parliament within November 2014.


NEW PROJECTS

“Young entrepreneurs of Albania”

The Local Democracy Promotion Project (LDPP) aims to enhance democracy at the local level through support to various drivers of change.

Young entrepreneurs of Albania will support the young students of professional schools to develop their entrepreneurial spirit and skills, to design and sell their business ideas. The schools in focus of this project are the “Harry Fultz” Institute in Tirana and “Beqir Çela” in Durrës.

The project will work to mobilize and engage civil society toward a greater citizen participation and to increase oversight of local governance leading to far greater transparency, accountability and improved public services. Currently the project is conducting a research to broadly mapping out the current and potential ‘demand’ side of local government functioning. Specifically it consists of an interaction mapping exercise to capture current capacities and practices for interaction between government and local communities and an ideas mapping exercise to capture ideas for concrete ways and actors to address priority concerns put forward by the communities. The project is implemented by a consortium of three organizations: OSFA, Partners Albania and Co-Plan, and financially supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).

The project will consist in two main components: organization of Business Camps to build the skills of the young entrepreneurs and to enable them to design and present their business ideas; and organization of a Competition to secure seed funding from local businesses and build mentoring relations for the successful business start-up of the winning ideas. The project is being implemented in cooperation with the Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth that through this project intents to promote the Vocational and Education Trainings system as an opportunity for the development of successful entrepreneurship, and to orient the Albanian youth toward VET. This PA project is implemented in cooperation with and support of Public Affairs Office of the United States Embassy in Tirana.

Social Innovation Europe Social Innovation Europe (www. socialinnovationeurope.eu) is a website and event series designed to bring together the best social innovations and innovators in Europe. The initiative started in 2011, implemented by a group of partners led by the Social Innovation eXhange (SIX). Since the initiative started, Partners Albania has been a Social Innovation Europe country partner, highlighting the most exciting innovators and events in our region. Currently, the consortium behind SIE has expanded. A collaboration between 9 organizations from across Europe, supported by the European Commission, will work to animate and grow the community. Social Innovation Six (SIE) and the European Association for Information on Local Development (AEIDL) will lead this work together with Euclid Network, Young Foundation, EMES, Nesta, Groupe SOS, Partners Albania and the Danish Technological Institute providing invaluable insight and expertise to the project. In the next two years the project will work to help innovators work together better and facilitate more cross border collaborations and projects. Visit Social Innovation Europe to read about great ideas and projects in Europe: https://webgate.ec.europa.eu/ socialinnovationeurope/home

Challenges and Opportunities for Employment of Marginalized Groups by Social Enterprises Partners Albania is the Albanian partner in a Regional Research Promotion Programme in Western Balkans, a joint initiative researching on Social Enterprises as a driver for employment of marginalized groups. The project will focus on mapping the social enterprise models in Macedonia, Albania and Kosovo and analyze their institutionalization process using the methodology of the International Comparative Social Enterprise Models Project.

For the first time it will be established a comprehensive database on social enterprises in the targeted countries. National comprehensive study reports on the characteristics and the role social enterprises play on the labor market as well as a cross-country comparative report will explore opportunities and provide policy measures to support the legislative and policy processes in the targeted countries. The project will build a joint web-site to promote research findings and social

entrepreneurship in Macedonia, Albania and Kosovo and beyond. The project is implemented by Partners Albania, Reactor - Research in Action, Konekt, Center for Media Activities in Macedonia, and Center for Peace and Tolerance in Kosovo. This initiative is supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation SDC in cooperation with Universite de Fribourg.

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Local Democracy Promotion Project


International Debate “Development of Social Enterprises”, in frame of JOIEU project Partners Albania organized on October 14, 2014 an international debate on “Development of Social Enterprises”. To follow up the Partners Albania contribution in the social enterprises development, the debate brought together actors from institutions influencing SE development from state agencies, SE representatives, academic institutions, development agencies and donor agencies. The debate featured best practices and challenges from European countries partners in the project from Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Serbia and the UK.

The international debate was held in the frame of the project “Joint Citizen Action for a Stronger, Citizen-Friendly Union” (JoiEU), which focuses on coordinating debate and action in 13 European countries (Rumania, Netherlands, Estonia, Serbia, Croatia, Italy, Belgium, Denmark, Czech Republic, Cyprus, Spain, Bulgaria and Albania) on a set of issues related to citizen participation and strengthening the citizen base of a deeper European integration. The debate was broadcasted live and is available in PA channel in Youtube. The JOIEU project is funded by the European Union and implemented by a group of international partners led by ProInfo (Bulgaria). More information on the project is available at http://joieu.net/

TOWARDS A SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY

A special panel discussed the experience of Social Enterprises operating in Albania, part of which were also the start-ups supported by Partners Albania through the Green Ideas competition. They talked about their experience and challenges in the efforts to respond to the society’s environmental, social and economical needs through building sustainable social businesses.


Making the Labor Market Work for Young People in Albania

In order to achieve this goal, RisiAlbania works with a wide range of partners from the private and public sector as well as civil society. Following are some of the main activities of the project during the third quarter of this year: Aiming to increase the access of young people in job information and opportunities, in July 2014 RisiAlbania signed a cooperation agreement with DM Consulting to support one of the leading job portals, www.duapune.com to offer new online services for job seekers and SMEs. Risi will provide consultancy for the development of new services related to searching engine, easy job application, reporting analytics, marketing and expansion of the services; and online payments. It is expected that the new service will become available to SMEs and job seekers from September 2014. Risi aims to stimulate national mainstream media to actively disseminate Labour Market Information to young people and their parents, thereby improving their education, career choices and employment opportunities. On 2 July 2014, Risi organized a conference with representatives of national media to introduce the opportunity to use labor market information as potential business for them. As a result of the conference and further meetings, through Risi support,

three national media have decided to broadcast programs on labor market information for young people. RisiAlbania completed a Market System Analysis in Tourism sector to determine the symptoms of under performance at tourism business level and uncover the underlying systemic constraints to growth. RisiAlbania has identified three main clusters of interventions that would drive positive change and create jobs tackling the lack of market intelligence; the lack of online visibility and promotion of tourism businesses, and diversification of touristic products by making better use of Albania’s potential. On September 12, 2014 Risi presented to financial institutions the findings of a research consultancy on seasonality of agroprocessing. These findings will support banks in offering more tailor made products, such as loans which in turn, would increase investments and generate more employment opportunities in the sector. RisiAlbania team is following up on this initiative with individual meetings with banks to further design favorable financial products for agro-processors. On 21 September 2014, Risi started an in-depth and participatory research on the constraints and opportunities in the ICT sectors in Albania. The research will be completed through November 2014 and soon afterwards Risi will start interventions in this sector. RisiAlbania project is being implemented by a consortium consisting of Helvetas Swiss Inter-cooperation and Partners Albania, and is funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation ( SDC) in Albania. More information on the project is available at:

www.risialbania.al

“Learning from the ‘Best’?” - A Study Visit on Professional Education and Measures to meet Youth Unemployment”, Germany Ariola Agolli and Klotilda Tavani, PA Directors of Programs participated in a study visit on Youth Professional Education and Measures to meet Youth Unemployment, organized in Germany from 3-11 October 2014. Youth education and (un)employment are driving political issues in Europe. While several European economies are experiencing even higher rates of youth unemployment, the pools of young qualified workforce in other countries are drying up. Underemployed youth leads to shrinking economies, while uneducated youth deprives societies of desperately needed innovation. The European Union has therefore taken several measures in order to address this issue. At the same time European countries develop their own mix of educational and labour policy – with differing results. Germany has currently the lowest youth unemployment in Europe. A decade ago it was EU average and

twice as high. In the two federal entities Berlin and Brandenburg unemployment has almost halved. But still youth unemployment is thriving here. During the study visit, the group of 33 participants from 19 countries explored the field of vocational and higher education as well as the support structures for employability of young people in the federal entities Berlin and Brandenburg. They met with scientists, employment agencies, educational enterprises and NGOs that support youngsters with handicaps and fewer opportunities as well as mobility advisors for EU financed programs. They were introduced to the dual education system in Germany, inclusion of young people with fewer opportunities in labor market, integration of youngsters with migrational background in the education and employment system etc.

On the other hand participants brought examples from their countries and communities, compared experiences and critically assessed how to do successful lobbying and advocacy for unemployed young people in their own countries and at European level. This visit was hosted by Mostar Friedensprojekt and organized in framework of Erasmus + Programme of EU.

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RisiAlbania is a youth employment project that focuses on achieving systemic changes in the Albanian labor market in order to improve access to employment and income opportunities for young women and men.


Partners Albania has continued the work for the development of alternative tourism in the region of Korca. During this period Partners Albania staffs in collaboration with local partners have conducted visits to businesses, to prepare promotional information and presentation of characteristic local products they offer, in order to further promote the businesses of these areas in the country, in the region and beyond. Meanwhile, the preparation of promotional materials for local businesses and touristic attractions of the area has progressed and project team is in the process of finalizing the promotional brochure and the TV spot.

Fair of IPA CBC Macedonia - Albania Program Grant Beneficiaries

The project team has conducted visits to the local businesses identified to be part of the touristic route and the promotional materials, have collected photo shots of these businesses and their services, and photos of the historical, cultural and spiritual objects of touristic interest in the area. To ensure the wide involvement of stakeholders, PA project teams has conducted several visits and meetings with central and local government representatives (Ministry of Culture, Ministry of Urban Development and Tourism, Municipalities of Korça and Pogradec, Communes of Voskopoje, Dardhe, Pustec, etj; representatives of Korça Orthodox Holy Mitropolia etc, to ensure their official willingness and coordinate the work for promoting local tourism capacities and potential, and enhance the local and international collaboration in development of the alternative tourism.

Partners Albania in collaboration with local institutions and partners will organize during November – December 2014 a series of visits in Macedonia and Albania, aiming the exchange of experience, creation of connections among businesses in the region of Struga, Ohrid, Debarca and Vecani in Macedonia and Korça and Pogradeci regions in Albania aiming to promote tourist attractions and products of Albania and Macedonia, in order to develop tourism and economy in the cross-border area.

During this period, project’s staff has developed communication with national and local media channels representatives to elaborate a plan for the broadcasting and the delivery of touristic promotion products realized in the frame of this projects.

The activities, results and achievements of “Towards an Alternative Tourism” project were promoted by PA project staff during the joint fair of the projects implemented under the EU-funded IPA Cross-Border Cooperation Programme between the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Albania 20072013, organized in Tirana on September 23, 2014. This event was addressed by Mrs. Klajda Gjosha, Minister of European Integration of Albania, Mr. Lirim Shabani, Minister of Local Self Government of the Republic of Macedonia, and Mr. Yngve Engstrom, Head of Operations at the EU Delegation to Albania.

The project Towards an Alternative Tourism is implemented by Partners Albania and MEDF Foundation in Macedonia, and is supported by European Union, under IPA CBC Programme Albania - Macedonia, 2007-2013. I.

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Towards an Alternative Tourism


Enhancing Transparency and Accountability in Public Electronic Procurement Application at Local Level Since January 2014, Partners Albania is monitoring on daily bases the website of the Public Procurement Agency and all announcements published on this website and in public procurement bulletin by the municipalities of Berat, Fier, Himara and Saranda. This monitoring work is being conducted in frame of Partners Albania initiative to increase the efficiency of public procurement through increased transparency and accountability in local government.

Partners Albania has continued with the conduction of a survey with 160 economic operators who have applied in tenders announced by the four municipalities during 2013, to assess their satisfaction with the system and electronic procurement procedures. Partners Albania work for monitoring the implementation of the public procurement law and procedures in the municipalities of Berat, Fier, Himara and Saranda is supported by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Albania, under the MATRA program for civil society.

Facilitation of regional consultation meetings of the World Bank Group with local stakeholders Partners Albania facilitated during this period the organization of a series of regional consultation meetings of the World Bank Group with local stakeholders, to hear their views about the areas where they see the most opportunities for Albania’s accelerated growth as well as areas they consider important for the Government to prioritize. The regional meetings were organized in Shkodra, Vlora, Korça and Berat, with participation of representatives from civil society, businesses etc. These meetings are part of the preparation process of the next Country Partnership Framework of the World Bank Group to support Albania’s growth and development. The Country Partnership Framework will define the World Bank Group’s future four to five year assistance for Albania.

Social Media and Branding Training for NGOs Partners Albania with the support and in cooperation with the US Embassy in Albania organized on 14-17 October 2014 the “MIMA Media Course: Social Media and Branding”, for PR and communications officers of 14 active organizations and social enterprises from Tirana, Vlora, Elbasani and Shkodra.

The training was conducted by Christoph A. Geiseler, MIMA Academy founder and CEO. The training provided the organizations with knowledge and practical skills on producing videos to promote their organizations work and using social media to convey messages, build audience and supporters.

The training methodology was very interactive and participatory, providing the participants with the opportunity to put in practice the knowledge and information received, combining theory with practice. At the last day of the training, it was conducted a peer review session were all draft videos produced were shown to the group and analyzed by the participants, giving each other comments and suggestions to further improve their work. Participants evaluated the training as very concrete and extremely useful to their organization’s work. The training was also a good networking opportunity for the organizations. Participants created and joined a Facebook group to use as a forum to share and exchange ideas on their work.

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TOWARDS A SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY

An overview of the monitoring results for the period July - September 2014 was shared with stakeholders and is electronically available at: http://issuu.com/partners-albania/docs/report_ eng_july_september_2014


PARTICIPATION IN INTERNATIONAL EVENTS

Ms. Juliana Hoxha, Partners Albania Director, together with thirty other civil society representatives from around the world, participated in the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) “Standing with Civil Society”, a flagship program of the US State Department. The program was organized through September 14-27, 2014.

As part of the program, Ms. Hoxha had the opportunity to attend the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Event 2014 and attend a private civil society event with President Obama. The program included participation in the high level meeting of Open Government Partnership, meetings with State Department, US agencies including private foundations and NGOs in Washington DC, New York and Philadelphia. Standing with Civil Society initiative was launched by President Obama on 23 October 2013 at the UN General Assembly, as an effort to further intensify the support to civil society, recognizing its crucial role in building democracies and protecting human rights all over the world. In the last years there are a series of initiatives addressing this issue such as: the Open Government Partnership in which Albania participates, an initiative promoting transparent, effective and accountable institutions in partnership with civil society. Sixty five countries and a broad coalition of civil society and private sector partners have joined this initiative;The Community of Democracies (a global intergovernmental coalition of states in 106 countries, founded in 2000, bringing together governments, civil society and the private sector in supporting democratic rules and strengthening democratic norms and institutions around the world) is working to take aim at restrictive laws; The Human Rights Council established the first Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Peaceful Assembly and Association. Several governments and foundations contribute to a “Lifeline” fund for emergency aid to civil society groups under threat. What we see today, as highlighted by Mr.Obama when launching the Standing with Civil Society initiative last year, “is a growing number of countries that are passing laws designed specifically to stifle civil society. They’re forcing groups to register with governments, eroding human rights protections, restricting NGOs from accessing foreign funding, cracking down on communications technologies that connect civil society groups around the globe.” At the Clinton Global Initiative 2014, Mr. Obama went further elaborating concrete steps the US government is taking in supporting civil society, such as issuing the presidential memorandum under which federal departments and agencies will consult and partner more regularly with civil society groups; creation of new innovation centers to empower civil society groups around the world; increasing the funding and support for the Community of Democracies and society groups across the board; design of new regulations by the Treasury Department to easier and less costly grant making for organizations; provision of legal assistance and technical support to those pushing back against onerous laws and regulations.

Western Balkans Network Meeting of the Olof Palme International Center From 24 to 26 September 2014, Blerina Guga, PA Project manager participated in the Regional Western Balkans Network Meeting of the Olof Palme International Center, held in Belgrade. The meeting helped build and strengthen regional and international partnerships among active organizations of the Olof Palme International Center network in Albania, Kosovo, Serbia and Sweden. They explored opportunities for cooperation through joint actions, projects, exchanges and long term collaboration. One of the main discussions in the meeting was the political, economic, social and cultural context of the region in 2014 that affects the future regional activities and initiatives. The meeting was attended by about 50 civil society organizations from Albania, Kosovo, Serbia and Sweden, as well as representatives of the Swedish embassy in Belgrade. The discussion generated opportunities and ideas for regional and international cooperation across different areas of expertise that each organization have, and willingness to contribute to the sustainable development of the region.

Maximizing the Potential and Capacity of the Framework Partnership Agreements

As a partner in the implementation of the FPA project “Balkan Civil Society Acquis – Strengthening the Advocacy and Monitoring Potential and Capacities of CSOs”, Partners Albania represented by Klotilda Tavani participated in the closing conference of Framework Partnership Agreements of the European Commission with networks of CSOs from the Western Balkans, Turkey, and the European Union. The project leaders and their partners of the Framework Partnerships and the European Commission’s, Civil Society Facility Team at DG Enlargement, got together on the 24-25 of September in Brussels to exchange views on what it is achieved and plans for the second phase of the projects. More on this event is available at: http://www. balkancsd.net/

Provision of Social Services by CSOs – Study Visit to Slovenia

The issue of service provision, especially social provision as a field of important cooperation between CSOs and public institutions at central and local level has been highlighted in the Regional and Country Reports under the Monitoring Matrix for Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development, first published in 2014. As result, in several countries including Albania, BCSDN members have decided to address the issue via concrete advocacy activities such as exploring and presenting different models for successful cooperation between the two sectors as the area of service provision is under explored and utilized in its potential benefits for the State to provide basic services to citizens. The project organized a study visit in Slovenia on October 22-24, 2014, with participation of project’ partners from Albania, Macedonia, Kosovo, and Serbia and relevant state public institutions. PA was represented in the study visit by

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Standing with Civil Society


Klotilda Tavani, Director of Programs. Participants met with Ministry of Labor, Family and Social Affairs, Municipality of Ljubljana and several CSOs implementing social programs, learning from them about the functioning of the system of social programs, legal framework, obstacles and challenges, how the development of concrete program is encouraged and how CSOs combine service provision with advocacy.

www.thealbaniancrowd.org

The Albanian Crowd is the newest service of Partners Albania for the nonfor-profit sector and its relevant partners and beneficiaries. It belongs to PA longstanding efforts to strengthen civil society sector capacity, at the core of its activity as a resource center for the sector. The Albanian Crowd is an interactive online platform of the 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. The Albanian Crowd provides the opportunity for its members to share the most recent updates about projects and activities, identify potential project partners and recruit volunteers and supporters. The platform increases the networking potential in and outside the country and their work visibility. The Albanian Crowd will also serve the institutions and individuals from the public sector, the business community, media, international organizations and donors who will find in it dynamic information, partners and services needed. This project is implemented by Partners Albania and supported by the U.S. Embassy in Tirana. To all the active users of Albanian NPO Directory managed by Partners Albania for the last 13 years, the Albanian Crowd would be from now on the only online directory of the sector.

TOWARDS A SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY

THE ALBANIAN CROWD, an interactive online platform for Albanian NPOs and social enterprises

All interested groups are asked to join the platform by completing the online registration form at this link: http://www.thealbaniancrowd. org/aplikimi-en/

Partners Albania is an Albanian NPO committed to advancing civil society and a culture of change and conflict management in Albania. Partners Albania is a member of the Partners for Democratic Change International, a network of Centers in 20 countries, which provide conflict resolution training and services to the civic, NPO, municipal and national government, and business sectors in their countries and worldwide. PDCI website address is: http://www.pdci-network.org/

PARTNERS ALBANIA, CENTER FOR CHANGE AND CONFLICT MANAGEMENT Address: Rruga Sulejman Delvina, N.18, H.8, Ap. 12, Njësia Bashkiake 5, Kodi Postar 1022, Tiranë, Shqipëri, PO BOX 2418/1, Tel: +355 4 2254881 Fax: 2254883 Email: partners@partnersalbania.org Http://www.partnersalbania.org Follow us on

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Towards a Sustainable Society, edition 55  

Partners Albania Quarterly Newsletter, edition 55, July - October 2014

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