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Supporting Democratization and Reconciliation Process in the Western Balkans

Through regional cooperation of organizations from 6 Western Balkans countries – Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia, this Višegrad Fund supported project, aims at supporting democratization and reconciliation process in the region by engaging and raising capacities of young professionals and journalists from the six Western Balkan countries, for enhancing trust and peace-building efforts in societies.

It is crucial to focus on young generation and give them a perspective on the future, not the past, and actively involve civil society organizations that work with young people in the region.

The ambition of this project is to identify 30 young professionals (civil society leaders, political representatives, journalists) in six Western Balkan countries, who are already known in their communities, in order to further develop their capacities through know-how methods and transfer of experience from professionals and experts via in-person and online activities. These trained young people can continue their work as “influencers” who promote reconciliation agenda and activities related to the fight against nationalist tendencies. At the same time, young professionals will be trained on the basis of ToT (training of trainers) technic and will subsequently pass on their acquired knowledge and experience to their communities (as part of the project sustainability).

Circumstances we want to change

Photo by Jasmin Agović

Project activities

  • Three-day training session for the first group of 15 project participants in Tirana, Albania

The focus of this training session will be democracy and the rule of law and their importance for the reconciliation process, media literacy and anti-corruption. The program will combine training and workshops, discussions with opinion-makers, and team building activities. The aim of the session will be to develop the skills and knowledge of young professionals through the transfer of experience of project team members, experts and local partners, so that they can actively support their democratization and reconciliation efforts within their communities.

  • Three-day training session for the second group of project participants in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

The focus of this training session will be democracy and the rule of law and their importance for the reconciliation process, media literacy and anti-corruption. The program will combine training and workshops, discussions with opinion-makers, and team building activities. The aim of the session will be to develop the skills and knowledge of young professionals through the transfer of experience of project team members, experts and local partners, so that they can actively support their democratization and reconciliation efforts within their communities.

  • Online joint workshop for all 30 project participants

The focus of this session will be geopolitical developments and their influence on the region, counteraction of disinformation and malign activities. The programme will combine online lectures, trainings, but also discussions with opinion leaders and decision-makers, as well as between the project participants, so that they have an opportunity to exchange their impressions and progress. Besides, the project participants will have an opportunity to present their progress with development of policy proposals and work on them together with mediators during the break-out sessions.

  • Policy proposals on the future of Western Balkan region

Members of the young professionals network will be divided into three groups, depending on their interests and expertise for the development of 3 policy proposals and recommendations on the future development of the Western Balkan region, focusing on three topics: – Future of reconciliation efforts in the Western Balkans – Socio-economic development of Western Balkans – Future of the Western Balkans in the European project. Project partners and experts will mentor the process of policy proposals development in-person and online.

  • Study trip to GLOBSEC Conference in Bratislava, Slovakia

Study trip of the 10 most active young leaders to Slovakia and participation at the GLOBSEC conference. During the visit, they will complete a program of meetings and trainings on the topics of EU enlargement, regional cooperation and reconciliation. They will also have an opportunity to share their experiences from the field and present policy proposals to V4 and EU experts and decision-makers.

Photo by Jasmin Agović

One of the main outcomes of the project is the network of trained young leaders (train-the-trainers) from all six Western Balkan countries that are expected to further act in their communities as advocates of promoting regional cooperation and reconciliation and thus acting as multipliers, sharing their ideas and experience further among their peers.

This project is generously supported by:

This project is implemented in partnership with: