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Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland

Equal rights for all - Embassy of Finland, Pristina : Current Affairs


Str. Perandori Justinian No. 111, Pejton
10000 Pristina, Kosovo
Tel. +383 38 737 000, E-mail:
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News, 2/25/2015

Equal rights for all

Embassy of Finland in Pristina
Educator Elikona Sadiku assisting children with their homework.

Support for minorities, children rights, and income generating activities are some of the priority areas that the Embassy of Finland tackles through its Fund for Local Cooperation (FLC). In March last year, the Embassy signed an agreement with NGO Voice of Roma, Ashkali and Egyptians (VoRAE) based in Gracanica to support the project “After school support to RAE children and creation of employment opportunities for RAE youth”.

The overall objective of the project was to improve the level of participation in education for Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian (RAE) children in Kosovo as well as to increase the employment possibilities while contributing to a better social inclusion.

VoRAE manages and supervises the work of 15 education centers in 10 Kosovo municipalities, where they provide children from RAE and other communities with assistance in pre-school and after school classes. The objective is to support these children in entering and remaining in public school system. According to the manager of the project, Orhan Butic, more than 800 children were assisted through after school classes. At the moment, the NGO is working closely with Kosovo Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MEST) on a regulation which would institutionalize the education centers. If implemented and applicable, the operation and functioning of the education centers would be the MEST’s responsibility.

The phenomenon of school dropout is still present amongst the Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian communities. The NGO is doing its best in preventing, but also facilitating their return to school. One of the recent beneficiaries of the project is Sevdie Ademi, an 11 years old girl form Lipjan municipality. Currently, Sevdie is taking additional classes to prepare entering public school. “I would like to go back to school”, she says, adding that drawing is her favorite subject.

Embassy of Finland in Pristina
Education Center at “Ismail Luma” school in Lipjan.

Moreover, VoRAE is helping the parents of these children by teaching them to read and write. In return the parents are obliged to let the children go to school, but now they also have the required skills to assist their children with their homework.

Furthermore, VoRAE’s is heavily working in providing the adults from Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian communities with professional skills and lobbying in private and public institutions for employment opportunities. During 11 months of the project implementation VoRAE managed to facilitate the employment of 21 persons.

The Embassy is impressed with all the results achieved during the implementation of this project. “This project will be finalized by the end of February and we are so thankful toward the Embassy on the partnership and support we’ve received. However, our efforts toward equal rights for all will never end until their full realization”, stated at the end Mr. Butic.

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Updated 2/25/2015

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