Regular DPNSEE Board meeting

The meeting of the Board of the Drug Policy Network South East Europe was held from 25 to 27 February 2019 in DPNSEE Office in Belgrade, Serbia.

The Board adopted minutes from the General Assembly held in December 2018 and Board meeting held by Skype recently this month. The DPNSEE Narrative and Financial report for 2018 were also adopted.

The Board discussed various elements of the DPNSEE Plan for 2019. An important decision is that the Strategic planning workshop will be held from 14 – 17 May. More details about the programme and venue will follow.

To increase visibility of our work and present our experiences and expertise, the Board decided to support participation of DPNSEE representatives in various international events: Commission on Narcotic Drugs, Harm Reduction International Conference and Lisbon Addictions 2019 Conference.

The Board also discussed contacts with member organisations, producing an operational manual, process and criteria for appointing DPNSEE representatives to various events, production of web pages for Glossary and Resource Centre, human rights and discrimination of people who use drugs, opportunities for engaging volunteers, overview of personal expertise, tools for on-line communication, problems with immigrants in Slovenia, accreditation and licencing of HIV prevention services, Regional EECA multi country grant and other issues.

Planning the year ahead

The DPNSEE Board held the first meeting in 2019 on 4 February by Skype. Most of the meeting was dedicated to finalising the DPNSEE operational plan and budget for the year.

The plan was structured under seven headlines:

  • Improving management capacity
  • Advocacy
  • Contacts with the member organizations
  • Human rights
  • Regular (recurring) activities
  • Resource Centre
  • Office and Staff issues

Work of the Network in this year will be supported by an institutional grant from the Open Society Foundations.

The Board also decided to hold an in situ meeting in Belgrade on 25 – 27 February. Following the work at the General Assembly, a strategic workshop to define priorities for the future is planned for 10 – 14 April in Montenegro.

Regular DPNSEE Board meeting

The Drug Policy Network South East Europe Board held a regular meeting in Skopje from 28 February to 2 March 2018. 5 of 7 Board members and Staff participated.

Significant part of the meeting was dedicated to reviewing the results of the work in the previous year and evaluating the growth of the Networks activities and actions on national, regional and the global scene. The Board sees 2017 as a year full of activities with DPNSEE international recognition and improved profile.

At the General Assembly in 2016, DPNSEE made first step in developing DPNSEE strategic plan. Following the discussion at the 2017 General Assembly, Board took steps to continue strategic discussion to identify priorities for the work in 2018 and beyond. Analysis of the DPNSEE Code of Conduct concentrated on the Board dynamics and improving relations with member organisations.

The Operational plan for 2018 includes more actions and activities for the upcoming year: capacity building, resource centre, additional translations of the Glossary of term used in drug policy, documenting cases of discrimination of vulnerable populations and international developments.

The Board accepted the information about the move of the Office and potential restructuring of the Staff.

The DPNSEE Board meeting

The first meeting of the Board of the Drug Policy Network South East Europe was held on 20 and 21 March 2017 in the DPNSEE Office and the Library of the House of Human Rights in Belgrade, Serbia. It was an opportunity for the new start of the Board after the changes in the composition made at the last General Assembly held in November 2016. All the Board members participated, and Staff including two volunteers joined for some parts of the meeting.

The Board adopted the DPNSEE Annual statement, the minutes from the recent General Assembly and the Board meeting and the Report for period December 2016 – March 2017 proposed by the Staff. Board also discussed the Operational plan for 2017 and forthcoming events and activities.

The Board discussed the fundraising strategy, membership fees payments, reimbursement procedures, capacity building (training), volunteers’ work on resource pool and glossary, website, Expert committee and DPNSEE Strategy 2016 – 2019.

The 3rd Board Meeting of Drug Policy Network South East Europe

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Planning the future
The third Board Meeting of Drug Policy Network South East Europe dedicated to strategic planning took place in the Scout Centre Daljan in Ohrid, FYROM from 24 to 26 of August 2016. A specific introduction to the Board meeting was the meeting of the partners of the project “Strengthening NGO capacity and promoting public health and human rights oriented drug policy in South East Europe”. The partners reported on actions in 2016 and planned future activities of the project, including actions to be taken late this year and possible actions to include in the project plan for 2017.

Discussing Network membership, the Board Meeting proposed for the membership:

·            6 organisations to become the ordinary members of DPNSEE: Aksion Plus, Albania; Cazas, Montenegro; Center for Life, Greece; Juventas, Montenegro; Proi, Bosnia and Hercegovina; and Re Generation, Serbia

·            2 organisations to become the associated members of DPNSEE: ARAS, Romania and Prometheus, Greece.

The letter of proposals will be forwarded to the General Assembly of the Network and the electronic assembly will be organised for the voting on proposed memberships. The Staff presented numerous calls for project proposals where the Network and member organisations can apply. Successful proposals would help build capacity and ensure sustainability of the Network. The Board also made an extensive list of possible source of funds to collect co-funding for the European Union project in 2016. The purpose of the strategic planning exercise was to determine the basis for the strategy of the Network, based on the Vision and Mission of the DPNSEE. It was a systematic process of envisioning a desired future, and translating this vision into defined goals or objectives and a sequence of steps to achieve them.

The strategic priorities proposed for the period 2017 – 2020 are: 

1.          Sustainability of the services – including but not limited to financing the programs, harm reduction, treatment, etc.

2.          Policy development – including advocacy, strengthening civil society, establishing partnership and promotion dialogue, undertaking researches to ensure evidence based approach, etc.

3.          Strengthening the Network – the Board, Office, Expert committee, but focusing on the Member organizations, including enlargement, capacity building, establishing a resource centre, etc.

The Action plan to implement the Strategy should be built on the needs recognised by the member organisations and situation in the drug policy field in South East Europe.

The board agreed that the 4th Board meeting and the General assembly will be held in Belgrade, Serbia from 28 to 30 November 2016. 

2nd DPNSEE Board Meeting

The second Board meeting of the Drug Policy Network South East Europe was held in Thessaloniki, Greece on the 2nd of June 2016 just before the Conference “Drug policy after the UNGASS 2016” organised by our member organisation Diogenis.

The Board welcomed three organisations and proposes to the General Assembly to recognise them as full members of the Network: Aktion Plus from Albania, Juventas from Montenegro and Centre for Life from Greece. The Board also welcomed staff members of the newly established office in Belgrade who presented themself to the members of the Board.

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The meeting then continued towards ways the Code of Conduct, that will define management policies and procedures in DPNSEE will be designed. The Staff will prepare the draft of the document that will be adopted at the Third Board Meeting. In addition, the Board was discussing Strategy of the Network for the period 2016 – 2019. The working meeting of the Board will be organised in late August in FYRO Macedonia where the Strategy will be shaped in detail.

Members of the Board alongside with Staff discussed and updated the Action plan for 2016 and agreed on the timeframe of the country visits that are planned for this year. The Board also brainstormed possibilities of fundraising needed for the future activities of the Network. Organisation of the General Assembly, planned for late autumn will be at the agenda of the next Board Meeting in August.