This country report provides policy recommendations on how to strengthen social inclusion and protection of minorities in the Western Balkan region and how to enable the environment for CSOs to to provide social services. It focuses on recent developments that have taken place since January 2016.
This country report is based on inputs provided by members of the IRIS Network, a regional network that brings together CSOs providing social services in the Western Balkans. The IRIS network has been founded in the in the framework of the EU-funded project “Improving the provision of Social Service Delivery in South Eastern Europe through the empowerment of national and regional CSOs”, implemented by the consortium of LIR CD BiH, OGI Croatia, EDC Serbia, SOS TELEPHONE Montenegro, CLARD Kosovo, ARSIS Albania, ASYD FYROM, and SOLIDAR - led by ASB Germany.
The inputs provided by our partners in the Western Balkans are focused on the following sections:
1. Social inclusion, human rights and protection of minorities;
2. The situation of civil society organizations as service providers.
In the past year, the Albanian government has set up a ‘National Action Plan’ on gender equality, children, youth, women, the victims of domestic violence and human trafficking, Roma and Egyptian citizens, LGBTI, the disabled, the elderly, people who are HIV positive and on other forms of discrimination. The Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth (MSWY) set up a the ‘Social Care Service Reform’ commission (2013-2016) and drafted the National Strategy on Social Inclusion 2015-2020, which set up the National Action Plan. Governmental bodies are currently setting up finance and a sustainable legal and administrative system for the delivery of social services. These measures aim to comply with EU standards and criteria.