“We live under the same sky"
On March 22 we organized our first activity named “We live under the same sky” in the centre of Korca in south-eastern Albania, aiming to attract the attention of the people, on the fact that we are all equal. We brought together 23 young Roma and non-Roma volunteers to promote that this day was the international day against racism. After two days of training, including discussions on how to fight stereotypes and discrimination and about the mission and message of “ternYpe”, we realized our street actions in the public. During the action we were dressed in black and white uniforms, to catch the eye of the people and to remind them that the world is not like this. In this activity we used dance in the street, shared pamphlets, engaged in street painting and recorded public opinions. Approximately 50 by passers stopped and got involved in the activity. They had short discussions with the volunteers on issues concerning Roma origin and Roma inclusion.
Training with the youngsters: Capacity-building through debating
In order to raise the capacity of the young Roma and non-Roma to be able to debate for their rights, we organized training for youth leaders. The methodology of this training was based on team work and collaboration through simulation games. By doing this we wanted to raise the collaboration between Roma and non-Roma youngsters. Our overall aim was to mobilize young people to be active citizens. Youngsters were separated in two groups in order to discuss about the Roma issues and to share experience of discrimination and how to defend their rights. In the end of this training the youngsters got to know each other and through debating they learned new facts and background information about the situation of Roma in Albania. Some became interested to collaborate and to take part in other activities. In order to fight stereotypes and discrimination we want to strengthen this kind of encounter and mobilization.
A lot of youngsters took part in an essay competition with creative essays about the topic “My best friend a Roma”. When we announced a call for contributions on our facebook page, a lot of youngsters became interested to take part and asked a lot of questions about the criteria of this competition. They sent their essays by email and we posted them on facebook, where the public voted on the essays by clicking the "like" button. At the same time a jury of professionals assessed the essays and selected three winners.
Roma magazine “Youth Voice”
Young Roma and Non-Roma students work together on the Roma magazine called “Youth Voice”. The aim of this magazine is to eliminate discrimination in everyday life, to show positive things about Roma, to present them in the media in order to strengthen their voice. We think this magazine will not change our past, but influence our future.
Photograph exhibition “Roma reality”
The exhibition “Roma Reality” was conducted in the cultural center of Pogradec. The photographs presented in the exhibition were taken by young Roma. The photos showed the life of the Roma community and the urban areas of Pogradec from the view of Roma photographers. The exhibition was visited by secondary school students, municipality representatives, NGO representatives and Roma and Non-Roma citizens. During the exhibition the young people distributed a leaflet with information about the Roma minority in Albania. During the exhibition, the youngsters explained the significance of the photographs and discussed with the participants about the information presented in the leaflet.