Women’s economic empowerment – a prerequisite for a life without violence

Women’s economic empowerment – a prerequisite for a life without violence

The Citizens’ Association for the Promotion of Roma Education “Otaharin” in cooperation with the Association of Roma Women are committed to implementing measures for the prevention of gender-based violence. Through the project “Accepting Gender Equality for Better Prosperity for Roma Women and Girls” supported by The Canada Fund for Local Initiatives (CFLI), OTAHARIN organized the official launch of the 16 Days of Activism Campaign, followed by youth workshops and training for Roma women representatives.

On 25 November, OTAHARIN organized a meeting with representatives of the city administration, institutions, non-governmental organizations and representatives of the Roma community. On this occasion, Mayor Mićo Mičić supported  the organization in its efforts to prevent gender-based violence through economic empowerment of women.

With this meeting, OTAHARIN officially launched the International Campaign “16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence”, which is celebrated annually from 25 November (International Day Against Violence against Women) to 10 December (International Human Rights Day) around the world.

The goals of the campaign are:

  • raising awareness of gender-based violence as a human rights issue at local, national, regional and international levels;
  • strengthening local work to prevent violence against women;
  • creating a clear link between local and international efforts to stop violence against women;
  • showing solidarity with women around the world organized against violence against women;
  • Creating tools to deliver on the promises made to end violence against women

National Grassroots Advocacy Academy in community organizing for women

National Grassroots Advocacy Academy in community organizing for women

Slovo 21 organized a National Grassroots Advocacy Academy in Prague in November. 31 Roma activists and representatives of Roma NGOs participated in the event. They received a training in basic advocacy skills as well as coaching for concrete community work and organizing.  During the meeting the participants also learned more about the phenomenon of antigypsyism, aiming to enable them to better address this issue. Thanks to this series of workshops Roma women gained skills and abilities in advocacy, community work and community organizing and became agents of change. For members of the Roma Women´s Group Manushe, the Grassroots Advocacy Academy was especially useful, as the group plans to improve its advocacy, community work and community organizing in the coming period. At least 6 of these women got motivated and mobilized and will organize community activities in cooperation with other community members to improve living conditions in their communities.

The Grassroots Advocacy Academy was funded by the International Visegrad Fund and the European Commission through projects of ERGO Network.

 

12th Edition of the FAGiC Awards for Roma development

12th Edition of the FAGiC Awards for Roma development

On December 4, 2019 FAGiC organised the 12th Edition of the FAGiC Awards, a ceremony with a double goal: on one side, it is an opportunity to reward Roma and non Roma people who contributed positively to the development of the Roma culture and the Roma community; on the other side, it is a big event to present FAGiC’s projects and activities.

This year, the awards went to:

  • Oncle Moncho for a lifetime’s work and contribution to Roma culture (post-humous) (Culture Award)
  • Oncle Peret for the promotion of Catalan Roma culture (Culture award)
  • Roma Women Association “Karing Vaxt” for the empowerment and promotion of Roma women (Association Award)
  • Educational team and parents of the school Juan Salamero for their fight against social exclusion (Education Award)
  • Hospital of Bellvitge for good practices with the Roma people (Health Award)
  • Chamber of Commerce of Barcelona for the promotion of inclusion of Roma people on the labour market (labour insertion award)
  • Eduard Carrera for the promotion of citizenship and harmony through the mediation especially with Roma people (mediation award)

Call for European Solidarity Corps placement in ERGO Network

Call for European Solidarity Corps placement in ERGO Network

ERGO Network is looking for an enthusiastic and active young Roma who would like to join our office team in Brussels for 11 months in the  framework of the European Solidarity Corps. This is a remunerated opportunity.

When: February (later date can be discussed) to December 2020

Where: ERGO Network office in Brussels, Belgium

Who: Young Roma between 18 and 30

Deadline for applications: 25 January 2020

During the 11 months with ERGO, you will learn about European policy and advocacy, help us organize international meetings and events, and get actively involved in Roma and human rights activism in Brussels and Europe.

Your main tasks will be:

  • Advocacy and policy: Support ERGO staff in EU advocacy work on poverty reduction, social inclusion and antigypsyism; attend debates, hearings and meetings with EU institutions and other stakeholders to challenge stereotypes and racism, and build partnership with Roma and non-Roma organizations from Belgium and other European countries.
  • Meetings and seminars: Support the organisation of meetings, events and international seminars of ERGO Network and its partners, e.g. our Advocacy Academy, Annual Members Meeting etc.
  • Communication and visibility: contribute to the updating of the ERGO Network and RomaReact websites and social media channels; develop creative approaches and publicity work to promote our activities and mission and a positive image of Roma.
  • Researching and reporting: Assisting ERGO’s research work e.g. on cases of inequality and antigypsyism all over Europe.

Your profile:

  • Young Roma between 18 and 30 years living in an EU Member State or Macedonia or Turkey
  • Good English language skills, both oral and written
  • Computer literacy (experience with Microsoft office package and social media)
  • High motivation to learn more about Roma activism and advocacy work
  • Previous involvement in Roma or (pro) Roma NGOs will be considered an advantage
  • Reliable, well organized and with attention to details

You will work about 38 hours per week, including the language course included in the package. Typical working hours are from Monday to Friday between 9:30 – 17:30, but can be adapted to your needs and the activities you will be involved in.

We aim to support young people who are enthusiastic about our cause and want to gain experiences that can be later transferred to national or local NGOs. We especially welcome applications from people who are motivated to challenge stereotypes, antigypsyism and racism and who show an open attitude for a unique learning and life experience, as well as a volunteer spirit of creativity, initiative, responsibility and independence.

We offer:

  • An allowance of 1049 Euro that includes money for accommodation, meals, local transport, language course and pocket money
  • Travel costs to Brussels (a lump sum depending on the distance to Brussels)
  • Health insurance for the whole year
  • On-arrival training with other Solidarity Corps volunteers, and lots of learning and development opportunities with ERGO Network and our partners
  • An exciting and unforgettable experience, working for an European organisation in an international city!

How to apply:

Please send your motivation letter (1 page) and CV (max 2 pages) by 25th January 2020 to info@ergonetwork.org.

 

 

 

 

Most Roma Friendly Mayor awards 2019

PRESS RELEASE

Brussels, 22/11/2019

Roma Active Albania and ERGO Network Award the Most Roma Friendly Mayors in the European Parliament on November 19, 2019

Roma Active Albania and the European Roma Grassroots Organisations (ERGO) Network organized an award ceremony in the European Parliament to acknowledge positive examples of local authorities – efforts of seven Mayors from the Western Balkans and Turkey to improve the lives of Roma in their municipalities.

The competition “The Most Roma Friendly Mayor” is part of the project Joint Initiative to Empower Roma Civil Society in the Western Balkans and Turkey. This project aims at mobilising Roma communities and strengthening their existing capacities to engage in a dialogue with public authorities.

The seven winning mayors, selected from 47 competing municipalities, were welcomed by the Member of the European Parliament and the Chair of Delegation for relations with Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo Romeo Franz, Co-Chair of ERGO Network and Former Member of the European Parliament Soraya Post, the Coordinator of the Roma Policy of the European Commission Directorate-General for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations (DG Near) Marta Garcia Fidalgo and the Director of Roma Active Albania and General Manager of the project Adriatik Hasantari. The winning mayors were symbolically awarded with statues, the creation of  prominent artist  Sead Kazanxhiu from Albania. The Director of ERGO Network Gabriela Hrabanova moderated the event.

Ms Hrabanova highlighted the importance of partnership between local authorities and Roma civil society organizations. “The local level is the most important to achieve real societal change and improve the quality of lives of Romani people”, she emphasized. Mr Franz asserted that “the positive role models that we are awarding this evening represent another proof that only together Roma and non-Roma can succeed”. “It is a proof that change is possible when you treat your citizens, regardless of their ethnicity, as equals”, he pointed out. Ms Post urged the mayors to spread their good practice while expressing how proud she was of their commitments: “We are proud of the awarded mayors; they are real human rights fighters. It is very clear that if mayors take their duties seriously, it shows good results also for the Roma community as full members of the society”. Ms Garcia Fidalgo highlighted the ways of support by the DG Near. “The strength of a society is proven by the support to the members who need it the most”, she stated and acknowledged that the winning mayors and their civil society partners are key actors who are helping their countries on the path to the European Union. While explaining “the Most Roma Friendly Mayor” campaign to the audience, Mr Hasantari concluded with a strong message to the Mayors: “What has been done is acknowledged and appreciated. However, we need more commitment from you in the future and more good examples!”

The awards were given to the following seven mayors: Ms Majlinda Bufi, Municipality of Roskovec, Albania; Mr Aldin Šljivo, Municipality of Kakanj, Bosnia and Herzegovina; Mr Kurto Dudush, Municipality of Shuto Orizari, North Macedonia; Mr Imri Ahmeti, Municipality of Lipjan, Kosovo; Mr Petar Smolović, Municipality of Bijelo Polje, Montenegro; Mr Vladan Glišić, City of Belgrade, Serbia; Mr Abdül Batur, Municipality of Konak, Turkey.

Seven independent juries were established in the respective countries, assessing the applications. The juries pointed out the following achievements: progress in Roma participation in local authority structures; efforts in creating education-related opportunities; increasing employability of Roma and especially of Roma women; building infrastructure and housing units and many more.

In the participating countries, the project is implemented by ERGO Network members Zero Discrimination (Turkey), OTAHARIN (Bosnia&Herzegovina), RROMA (North Macedonia), Roma Active Albania, Mladi Romi (Montenegro), Roma Forum Serbia and Voice of Roma, Ashkali and Egyptians (Kosovo).

Hosting MEP of the Most Roma Friendly Mayor Award Ceremony: Romeo Franz

Contact: Gabriela Hrabanova (g.hrabanova@ergonetwork.org, +32 2 893 10 49).

Disclaimer: This press release has been produced with the assistance of the European Union. The content of the release is the sole responsibility of Roma Active Albania and ERGO Network, and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union.