During the second quarter of 2022, GERMIN organized and facilitated plenty of activities with the goal of connecting and engaging the diaspora with the countries of origin. This newsletter provides a brief summary of our main activities in April, May, and June of this year.
The Diaspora Business Forum was held in Pristina on May 27 and 28. This forum gathered over 350 participants, among whom over 150 representatives of businesses from the diaspora. GERMIN organized the forum in collaboration with the European Branches of the Business Network of the Albanian Diaspora, supported by USAID Kosovo Compete Activity. This forum was attended by dozens of institutional representatives and hundreds of business representatives from Kosovo. The second day of this forum was dedicated to business visits in Kosovo. Dozens of representatives from diaspora businesses visited local businesses in Ferizaj, Gjakove, and Prizren.
50 young people have completed internships in diaspora organizations/companies that operate in the diaspora or in Kosovo as part of the project “Advancement of partnership with the diaspora for children and youth in Kosovo”. Out of 50 young people aged 16 to 24, 17 of them are already employed or have continued their apprenticeship. This project continues to be implemented by GERMIN with the support of the UNICEF program in Kosovo.
Meetings between mentors and women entrepreneurs are still taking place as part of the project “Diaspora for Women Entrepreneurs”, supported by USAID Kosovo Compete Activity. More than 15 sessions have been conducted so far by 8 diaspora mentors engaged with the program. The mentoring sessions will continue until September 2022.
Diaspora for Local Economic Development, a project supported by the Swiss CARITAS in Kosovo, has organized the first B2B meetings within the Diaspora Business Forum. The opportunities that this project will provide for the diaspora business community and the municipalities of Kosovo were also presented. Currently, as part of this project, a survey on the economic and potential investment of the diaspora is being developed, which we invite you to complete or distribute.
On May 6 in Tirana, the OriginAL program was launched. Over 80 representatives from local and international institutions, businesses, and civil society attended this event. Read more
GERMIN’s board of directors, Anila Hyka-Smorgrov, Avni Mustafaj, Hilmi Gashi, Anita Gjidoda, Ardian Lekaj, and Gazmend Salihi, as well as the co-directors, Sihana Bejtuallhu and Lirim Krasniqi, met with institutional and business representatives during their stay in Albania. Meetings were held with Ms. Mimi Kodheli, Chairperson of the Foreign Policy Committee, leaders of the Albanian American Development Foundation (AADF), leaders of the CREDINS Foundation, and the Ambassador of Israel to Albania, H.E. Noah Gal Gendler.
Given that OriginAL is modelled based on similar programs such as “Birthright Israel” program, GERMIN team is looking to get the best out of these global exemplars. Therefore, the co-director of GERMIN, Lirim Krasniqi, and the Project Manager, Arbnor Mjeku, conducted a study visit to Israel from late May – the beginning of June. They got a first-hand look at how Birthright Israel tours are organized, with the goal of applying similar but contextualized methods for the OriginAL program. ‘Birthright Israel’ team provided the GERMIN team with all detailed information regarding the operations of the tours, as well as they welcomed us to join the tours and get the most insights from the field.
GERMIN has signed an agreement with the Western Balkans Fund for the first time, with the goal of “Development of Regional Cooperation among Young People in the Field of Migration and Development.” Read more >>
The Citizen Engagement Activity (CEA), a collaboration between the Kosovo Civil Society Foundation (KCSF) and USAID in Kosovo, has begun to support GERMIN’s initiative to engage professionals from the diaspora. Read more >>
The Central Election Commission (CEC Albania), in cooperation with the OSCE Presence in Albania, organized the National Conference on “Voting from Abroad, The Time is Now” on May 24 in Tirana. Lirim Krasniqi from GERMIN presented various aspects of out-of-country voting to local decision-makers, representatives of international institutions, and ambassadors of friendly countries in Albania, by also presenting the experience of GERMIN in Kosovo.
GERMIN in the Media
During the second quarter of 2022, GERMIN was presented 21 times in the media outlets in Kosovo, Albania and the diaspora.