The beginning of school year 2015-2016

Free textbooks distribution and debate for basic needs of Roma and Egyptian children for the school year 2015-2016

Case Investigation and Debate on Massive Emigration of Albanian Citizens towards EU Countries

If I were to live in a city like this

The Orange Day in the Presidency of the Albanian Parliament

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The Orange Day in the Presidency of the Albanian Parliament

The pupils from the high schools of Tirana and the students of the University of Art, from the Presidency of the Albanian Parliament encourage the Albanian policy makers, in particular boys and men, to fight doemstic violence and violence against women in Albania.

Tirana, 6th of March 2015, at 10.00 a.m

The Presidency of the Albanian Parliament

The Albanian Assembly welcomed today the pupils from the high schools of the rural areas of Tirana such as: “Gramoz Palushi” in Paskuqan, “Androkli Kostallari” in Shkoza and “Mustafa Gerblleshi” in Sauk, who organized artistic activities in collaboration with the students and professors of the University of Arts, about the issues of gender equality and discrimination, and the role that men and boys should play as partners and allies to eliminate gender based violence and domestic violence. They organized artistic activities in design, acting and graphics, and disseminated messages against violence, inequality and discrimination which exist in the Albanian society today.

Present in this activity was the Head of the Albanian Parliament, Mr. Ilir Meta, who welcomed the youth and greeted this initiative by stating that: “Violence against women and children is a phenomenon which has to be punished. Violence against women and children must not be tolerated, notably in our society, which estimates the Albanian family as its core value, and this civil culture should be promoted and should be defended by all of us. I have always believed that children, youth and family should be in the center of every governmental action. The evolution of a democratic and social society can’t be imagined without taking into consideration the efforts undertaken to strengthen the role of women and children and without accomplishing the duties to protect their rights. Therefore, all the institutions should double their efforts in this initiative.”

The representative of UN Women in Albania, Mr. David Saunders, stated that: “However old, we men all have a role to play. The smallest act of kindness, to the largest act of empowerment. We all have the choice, the choice to commit. By being here today, you have already recognized a need to act, you now need to take a next step in your personal commitment to empower women and girls. You need to act to influence your colleagues in parliament, your family and your friends. Be a “He For She.”

The Deputy Minister of Education and Sport, Mrs. Nora Malaj greeted the activity, and emphasized the role of the Ministry of Education and Sport in the war against violence and gender inequality and its special support for the organizations of civil society, which operate in this area, by highlighting in this way the work that the Observatory for the Children’s Rights has done as a sustainable partner in this challenge.

The high school pupils of the rural areas of Tirana, became in this way the ambassadors of the gender equality, showing that they are against violence and discrimination, and an example for the Albanian policymakers in the war against gender inequality.

“The orange day in the Presidency of the Albanian Parliament” was organized by the Observatory for the Children’s Rights in collaboration with United Nations Organizations (UNDP and UN Women) and Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth. This will be as a closure activity of the UNiTE campaign in Albania: “Men and boys, part of the solution – Show you are against violence” (extended over the period of 25th November 2014 – 8th March 2015), and in support the solidarity movement for gender equality “#HeForShe”.

The solidarity movement HeForShe is a global campaign extended throughout the whole year, which intends to engage men and boys all over the globe, to act as models of change in gender equality and to extirpate violence against women and domestic violence, by encouraging them to undertake concrete actions against gender discrimination.

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The situation in the flooded areas in Berat, Fier and Vlora and needs for intervention

Observatory for the Children’s Rights scanning of the situation

12 February 2015

For more than 2 weeks Albania is undergoing a serious situation of floods. Due to the bad rainy and snowy weather conditions that all the country has had, floods have been a threaten not only for the houses, agriculture and livestock, but to the inhabitants lives as well. Based on the scanning of the situation that the Observatory for the Children’s Rights has done, the regions affected the most by the floods are Berat, Fier and Vlora Regions. In Berat the floods are caused due to Osumi river large flows, and the river has gotten out of its bed. In Fier floods were caused by Vjosa, Seman and Gjanica rivers large flows and in Vlora by Vjosa river. Figure nr. 1 shows the location of the flooded regions and the most affected communes:

Figure 1: The areas mostly affected by the floods

The communes mostly affected by this flooding situation and the ones which have had the largest registered damages in houses, agriculture, livestock and other physical damages are as follows:

Berat Region:

  • Ura Vajgurore Municipality
  • Otllak Commune – Morava Village
  • Berat Municipality

Fier Region:

  • Levan Commune – Ferras village and Bashkim village
  • Frakull Commune – Cerveze village and Kashishte village
  • Dermenas Commune – Hoxhare village, Povelce village and Darzeze village

Vlora Region:

  • Novosela Commune – Poro village, Bishan village, Mifol village, Akerni village and Novosele village

Figure nr. 2 shows the number of the families affected from the flooding situation and the number of evacuated families in regional level. In Berat region from 95 affected families only 1 family with a single mother was evacuated and sheltered in one of the cities crèches, because her house was destroyed. In Fier region from 440 affected families 126 of them were evacuated and sheltered in their relatives houses and in Vlora region from 500 affected families 120 were evacuated. In total the number of affected families is 1035 families and the number of evacuated families is 247 families.

Figure2 : The number of affected families and the number of evacuated families in regional level

Figure nr. 3 shows the number of affected families in commune level where the most damaged commune is Novosela commune in Vlora region.

Figure 3: The number of affected families in commune level in the most affected communes

The number of affected children and the children involved in this situation is 1355 children and figure nr. 4 shows the number of affected children in regional level.

Figure 4: The number of affected children in regional level

In the flooded areas some of the institutions like the State Social Services in the regional level, local governments; Emergency Civil Staff, etc have distributed aids for the families. The State Social Service in Berat region has taken the initiative to open a bank account to help the families. Until now many citizens have contributed. Regional Education Directorate in Berat and some schools have undertaken the initiative to collect food and clothing assistance, which will be distributed to the affected families.

In Fier Region Various many institutions and have provided assistance as: food packages (from 15 kg of food laid out by Civil Emergencies Staff), clothing, food for the livestock, 800 blankets (during this day will be delivered 1000 blankets for other families affected by the floods). Local government has had difficulties in identifying and delivering the aids to families affected by the floods.

All the affected regions have emergent needs to intervene (which are urgent and essential to the livelihood of the people) that affect the community. The identified needs are:

  • Food aid;
  • Tents;
  • Portable beds;
  • Mattress;
  • Blankets;
  • Pillows;
  • Personal clothes;

There is also a need to intervene for the reconstruction of the houses, because some of them were partially destroyed. One of the kindergartens in Berat region in Otllak commune has been destroyed because of the floods. In many schools which were closed, the lesson hasn’t started yet.

Every Roma child in kindergarten

Nisma-Roma1

Fact sheet
Initiative “Every Roma child in kindergarten” (Year I)

The Observatory for Children’s Rights, the Young Women’s Christian Association of Albania (YWCA), the Children’s Human Rights Centre of Albania (CRCA), in cooperation with UNICEF-Albania, are implementing the initiative “Every Roma Child in Kindergarten”, since October 2013. This project is supported by the Swiss Cooperation Office in Albania and the Austrian Development Cooperation.

Implementation of this initiative in each region and area of the country, among others, has succeeded to integrate many Roma children in kindergarten; Even that a lot of challenges and difficulties are faced, this initiative has resulted in total with 981 Roma children in kindergarten (from a total of 1,246 [1]) or 79%, by the end of school year 2013-2014 and beginning of 2014-2015.

As a result of implementation of the project “Each Roma Children in Kindergarten”, number of Roma children in kindergarten in national level, is increased with 409 children registered or 33% more.

Based on study organized by UNICEF in 2011, is made public that 369 from 1079 Roma children in total, or 36% registered in kindergarten in national level (http://www.sidalbania.org/romacom.html).

[1] Roma Census 2014, Soros Albania.

Other successes achieved by the implementation of this initiative in its first year of implementation (October 2013 – October 2014), are 184 Roma children are vaccinated, 44 children registered on Civil registration system and 74 children (of various ages) registered in compulsory education at the national level.

The whole process of inclusion of Roma children in kindergarten had a special attention to the community and parents. During this first year of project implementation, 2,162 parents of Roma community are contacted and shared with them information about the importance of devoted attention and behavior with their children during their early childhood development.

PUBLIC DECLARATION

The case of sexual abuse attempt of a 14 year old girl by the office assistant of the deputy Koço Kokëdhima in Saranda

The civil society organizations that observes and protects the rights of the child in the country, considers the event as a flagrant case of violation of child’s basic rights, and also as a highly severe invasion of human dignity of the woman and the child.

The case that has shocked the entire public opinion, shows once again the attempt to sexual exploit and abuse to Albanian children from people in power. Child abuse is a known phenomenon and this occurrence shows how easily children’s rights can be violated by using the desperate situations of simple citizens in search for employment. We highly appreciate the courage of this mother and woman, whom, despite the poverty situation where she is forced to live in, decided to make public the immoral violence of a man who was given power by a deputy of the Albanian Parliament, in the city of Sarandë.

By taking into consideration this severe and shocking event, the organizations that joined into this declaration, make the following recommendations:

1. Verifying the identity of every person who is in contact with people, especially with children, to eliminate any possibility that, people with a tendency to commit sexual offenses to use their position or power to abuse children;

2. Parliament of Albanian and Ministry of Interior should take with consideration and high priority request, made for several years from civil society, to establish the “National Registry for Sexual Crimes”, in order to avoid contact of sexual predators against children, women etc.

3. Raising the effectiveness of the work of the governmental structures in charge of children’s rights protection in local level in order to be closer to sensitive problems regarding children’s rights violation;

4. Media needs and should be active in supporting awareness raising campaigns, to disseminate information about all forms of abuse and exploitation of children, and be active in denouncing any case, especially when they relate to public officials or individuals close to them.

5. To create a task force, where the citizens can denounce these cases, similar to the case when the Internal Control Service arrested Velipoja’s police chief.

This public statement is supported by the following organizations:

– Observatori për të Drejtat e Fëmijëve në Shqipëri
– Qendra për Mbrojtjen e të Drejtave të Fëmijëve në Shqipëri (CRCA)
– ALO 116: Linja Kombëtare e Telefonit të Ndihmës për Fëmijët
– Koalicioni për Arsimin e Fëmijëve
– Shtëpia e të Drejtave të Njeriut
– Shoqata Kristiane e Grave Shqiptare (YWCA)
– Fondacioni” Syri I media së re”
– “Qendra e informimit Arhus” Vlorë
– Partner për fëmijët
– “Edukimi për Shoqërinë e Hapur”
– Women’s Democracy Network Albania
– “Shpresë për të ardhmen” Shkodër
– Shoqata qëndistarët Korçë
– REA NGO
– Ambasada PINK/LGBT
– Qendra për nisma ligjore Qytetare
– Shoqata”Gruaja Nëne dhe Edukatore”
– Gender Alliance for Development Center

 

Tirana, 21st August 2014

Social exclusion of children in Albania

Tirana on December 4th, 2012 –  The digitalised presentation of the database regarding children’s social exclusion indicators in Albania, on a regional level (for every district in the country), aims at encouraging the Albanian society to be more aware of children’s critical issues which affect the violation of their rights.

The Observatory for Children’s Rights aims at observing the realisation of children’s rights on a national level and in every district of Albania, analyse and process the information according to the point of view of the civil society and encourage interest groups discussions about the inclusive realisation of children’s rights.

The Observatory for Children’s Rights is an initiative of UNICEF, which aims at empowering alliances and harmonising the collaboration with the objective of increasing effective efforts for the realisation of children’s rights. The Observatory for Children’s Rights is a civil society mechanism capable of drawing near every actor and even children themselves under the initiative: ‘’ Children’s issues are everybody’s issues’’.

Until now, the Observatory has prepared and published several reports that offer detailed information regarding the main indicators of the realisation of children’s rights. In order for the rich information that has been collected to be effectively helpful to the network of governmental, nongovernmental and academic institutions, the Observatory wishes to realise “Social exclusion of children in Albania, presented in a digitalized format”

Digitalisation helps the fast and detailed presentation of the information regarding the institutionalisation of children’s rights, in every district of the country; also it creates the opportunity to use the information regarding children’s poverty and social exclusion indicators in every district, municipality, commune by every institution/ specialist/ citizen that will show interest. The preparation and distribution of 12 informative flyers for every district of the country and also a statistical descriptive brochure about national data, facilitates information usage regarding children’s rights and the collaboration with the Observatory for Children’s Rights network.