In the framework of the activities marking the OSCE Presence in Albania’s 20th anniversary and in line with its efforts in promoting active citizen participation and multicultural dialogue, the Presence, in co-operation with the Municipality of Tirana, the Austrian Development Agency (ADA) and the Regional Youth Cooperation Office (RYCO), organised the “Youth Trail: Promoting OSCE Values in the Western Balkans”, which took place from 13 to 17 September in Tirana.
The Youth Trail was organised in co-operation with diverse OSCE stakeholders who issued a call for applications for the purposes of activities for young people. As a result of the engagement from the Secretariat, Austrian Chairmanship, the Special Representatives on Youth and Security, and all field operations in South Eastern Europe, 900 applications from all over the Western Balkans were received.
For the 37 young people selected, the Youth Trail was a sharing, networking, recreational and learning experience. Furthermore, the Presence created a volunteer structure that supported the organization of the week-long event: five co-ordinators assisted six/seven participants each, while the group had also two dedicated volunteer-photographers. The group was involved in working sessions, in a mix of lectures, role plays and simulations, on Gender Equality, Anti-corruption, Youth Civic Engagement, Human Rights and Anti-trafficking. The different themes were introduced and presented by the Presence’s respective field experts.
In addition, the OSCE Secretariat travelled to Tirana, among others, to deliver the #CVEunited “Hashtag Action: Going Online for a Cause” workshop. According to participants’ evaluation forms, the highly interactive sessions allowed them to better comprehend the discussed issues. By the end of each day, participants were left with an increased awareness of common OSCE commitments and values.