Shkodra, Dibra and Kukes citizens can now benefit from employment and free legal aid support. UNDP Albania launched in Shkoder the “Support to employment and social services for vulnerable youth and women in Northern Albania” project implemented by UNDP with the financial support of the British Government. The project aims to create tangible opportunities for the youth living in the three municipalities by introducing tailor-made entrepreneurship training programs, offering opportunities for self-employment and start-ups and offering free legal aid to the most vulnerable.
UNDP Resident Representative,a.i. in Albania Limya Eltayeb underlined:” Today we have the chance to coordinate all our efforts and provide more opportunities for young women and men to build their lives in their own country. The extent of youth employment challenge in Albania calls for preventive and curative approaches that address at the same time labor supply and demand. It requires the sustained involvement of governmental agencies, labor market institutions, including employers’ and workers’ organizations, and civil society. UNDP is very well positioned to facilitate and partner with all the relevant stakeholders to help Albania’s dynamic youth get ready and make the most of their future”.
Albania faces challenges in terms of ensuring secure and productive employment opportunities for its population, especially for the poor, women and youth. While the unemployment rate among young has decreased (22.6%, Q1 2018) only 37.9% of youth are employed. Jobless young persons who are either unemployed or inactive, and not in school make up 30% of the 15-29 age group, more than twice of the EU average of 14.8 percent.
Northern municipalities of Albania are the poorest of the Country. The GDP pro-capita is almost half of the national average and the youth unemployment rate reaches 45%. Moreover, among the employed, two out of three are employed in the agricultural sectors, often with seasonal jobs. On the other hand, there is a limited public and private offer of vocational education and training.
As part of the programme, vulnerable communities in Shkodra can benefit from free legal aid services. A partnership agreement was signed between Shkodra District Court and the civil society organization “Center for Legal Civic Initiatives” to open a Free Legal Aid center targeting vulnerable population living in Shkoder. The center will offer primary and secondary free legal aid services to domestic violence survivors, Roma and Egyptian community, people with disabilities, rural women, elderly, returned emigrants and other marginalized groups.