Developing Local Youth Project Initiatives in Macedonia

The aim of the project “Developing local youth project initiatives in Macedonia” was to motivate young people from the municipalities of Saraj and Vrapchishte to detect local issues which are crucial for them and to find appropriate solutions. This project was implemented in the period from September – December 2017.

Mladiinfo´s task from the very beginning of the process was to develop complete methodology (guideline for grand aid, application form, a budget transfer form, community contribution form, document sample and criteria for preselection of the projects, document sample and criteria for a final selection of projects, form for minors, monitoring of the project and notification form). This methodology served for the International Organization for Migration (IOM) to help young people from the local communities to apply with their own small initiatives for moving forward the communities. The next phase of the project was training on 4 contact people – local leaders in the community and developing project initiatives. The role of these 4 contact people was the point of merging between youngsters from the municipalities Saraj and Vrapchishte with IOM, Mladiinfo and all stakeholders in the municipalities (units of local self-government, schools, business community). After this training Mladiinfo’s team organized 6 local debates together with IOM and 4 contact people (three in the municipality of Saraj and three in the municipality of Vrapchishte).

The aim of this 3 debate cycle in every municipality was to help young people detecting societal challenges, defining solutions and presenting all of them. The first two meetings were aimed at developing project initiatives, and the third debate in both municipalities (Saraj and Vrapchishte) was dedicated for presentation of the project in front of the expert jury, composed of representatives from: IOM, Mladiinfo, local self-government, business sector and educational institution (primary or high school).

In this process were involved 40 young people (20 from the municipality of Saraj, 20 from the municipality of Vrapchishte) from which resulted 6 different initiatives that are currently financially supported by the IOM and are in the phase of implementation: youth club, a club for empowering girls and women and reconstruction of the schoolyard, (municipality of Saraj), renovation of a school yard, renovation of a sports field and establishment of a youth club (municipality of Vrapchishte).

At the same time, the project partners are exploring the possibility of involving young people from these municipalities in some of the programs offered by Mladiinfo along with Social Impact Lab, such as the Social Impact Award 2018.