The regional meeting on “Children Who Use Drugs“, organised on 28 April by the Healthy Options Project Skopje (HOPS), was dedicated to exchanging experiences and sharing good practices in the region related to the problems and challenges faced by countries and civil society organizations in working with children and young people who use drugs, such as the availability of health and social programs for young people and children who use drugs.
Presentations on the topic had Liljana Ignjatova, Ph.D., Professor at the Faculty of Medicine in Skopje, Department of Psychiatry, and Head of the Centre for Prevention and Treatment of Drug Addiction, the Republic of Northern Macedonia, Eranda Berisha from Centre for Social Work Pristina, Kosovo*, Skerdi Zahaj, consultant in “Initiative for Social Change” ARSIS from Albania, Marija Mijović social worker at the NGO Juventas from Montenegro and Denis Dedajić from NGO Margina from Bosnia Herzegovina.
From the presentations of all speakers, it can be concluded that the rate of children and young people using drugs and other psychoactive substances is increasing. Health and other relevant institutions do not have an adequate answer to this question. In all countries in the region there is a complete lack of appropriate treatment programs for children who use drugs.
Recommendations from the meeting include:
- Use good practices from countries where there are programs to treat and care for children and young people who use drugs
- Prepare and adopt appropriate programs for the treatment of children and young people who use drugs
- Strengthen partnerships between CSOs and health and social institutions in policymaking and provision of services for children using drugs
The project “The Role of CSOs in the Western Balkans in Providing Social Services and Preventing Social Exclusion” is funded by SIDA – Swedish International Development Agency, through the Balkan Civil Society Development Network.
The project is implemented regionally in six Western Balkan countries, including ARSIS Youth Support Social Organization (Albania), Asocijacija Margina (Bosnia and Herzegovina), HOPS (Northern Macedonia), Qendra Labyrinth (Kosovo), Prevent (Serbia), NVO Juventas (Montenegro).
DPNSEE member organisation Juventas opened a Call for small grants to support the implementation of civil society organisations’ projects for the improvement of social inclusion of at risk children and youth in Montenegro, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Kosovo and Serbia.
The Call is announced under the “ARYSE (At Risk Youth Social Empowerment)” project, supported by the European Union and implemented by NGO Juventas (Montenegro), the project coordinator, with the partner organisations: ARSIS (Albania), Association MARGINA (Bosnia and Herzegovina), HOPS (Macedonia), Labyrinth (Kosovo), Prevent (Serbia) and SHL Foundation (Germany). The project beneficiaries are children and youth, especially at risk youth (children and youth who use drugs, who are in conflict with the law, who come from families who use drugs and/or are in conflict with the law, who are without parental care, as well as street and Roma children and youth). The project is being implemented under the Civil Society Facility and Media Programme 2014-2015.
The specific objectives of the open call for small grants are:
- To raise capacities of relevant actors/stakeholders and CSOs in the work with at risk children and youth;
- To establish, maintain, improve or scale up services for at risk children and youth regarding social inclusion and protection, education, employment, health, security, equality, rights and access to justice;
- To improve availability of evidence, and advance awareness, policies and practices for the purpose of enchasing social inclusion of at risk children and youth at local or national level.
To be eligible for this Small Grant Call the applicant must fulfil the following requirements:
- Is registered as non-profit/civil society organisation or network, in accordance with the respective national legislation, in their home country (i.e. Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro or Serbia), at least one year before the announcement of this Call;
- Has its headquarters in its home country (i.e. Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro or Serbia);
- Had an annual budget of EUR 10,000.00 to EUR 100,000.00 in the previous year.
Full information about the Call is available following this link>>>> while the application package is available here>>>>
The EU funded project ARYSE (At-Risk Youth Social Empowerment), implemented in 6 Western Balkans countries aims to contribute to achievement of social inclusion of most At-Risk Youth at the regional level, by strengthening CSOs capacities, regional/national cooperation and advocacy actions. The specific objective of the action is to support equal access to education, employment, justice and other related fields to most At-Risk Youth in the Balkan countries, by fostering the level of active participation and inclusion of CSOs representing young people in decision making and reform processes.
The project partners are ARSIS (Albania), Association Margina (Bosnia and Herzegovina), HOPS (Macedonia), Juventas (Montenegro), NGO Labyrinth (Kosovo), Prevent (Serbia) and SHL Foundation from Germany that has a role of consultant.
Topics that the project addresses include
- Youth from families with history of drug use and/or conflict with law
- Street youth
- Youth who use drugs
- Youth in conflict with law
- Youth without parental care
- Young Roma
The training mainly organised to provide material for future procedures and guidelines is being held in Skopje, Macedonia, from 15 to 18 October 2017. Experts – Nevena Nikolić, Vlatko Dekov, Dardan Berisha, Jarmila Bujak Stanko, Violeta Kola, dr Meliha Bijedić, dr Anita Burgund and Katarina Mitić – prepared draft standards for specific topics of the project.
More about the project is available at the website HERE>>>