Representatives of the NGO Mladiinfo Montenegro attended an online event organized by the Regional Office for Youth Cooperation (RYCO) on December 29, 2020 via the zoom platform.
At the conference, they presented the key results of the organization during this year, but also shared plans for next year.
The event is part of a campaign to promote regional youth co-operation, in partnership with the German Federal Foreign Office.
The first three local events took place in recent days in Tirana, Sarajevo and Skopje. The fourth local annual event that gathered over 50 participants was organized in Podgorica, and was followed by an event in Belgrade that gathered over 70 participants. The series of events concluded on Wednesday (December 30th) with the annual event in Pristina, Kosovo, which brought together almost 50 participants.
The conference was opened by the Deputy Prime Minister of Montenegro, Dr. Dritan Abazović.
Speaking about the work of the RYCO organization in Montenegro, Abazović pointed out that regional connection is not only one of the priorities of the new Government of Montenegro, but also one of the priorities on the road to the European Union. He also expressed respect for the work of the RYCO office in Podgorica.
He said that he views RYCO as a significant project for reconciliation and meeting new people.
The head of the local RYCO office in Montenegro, Edin Koljenović, said that the organization became operational in July 2016 when they had only 13 employees, and now it is a stable regional structure with six local offices and headquarters in Tirana with over 50 employees.
He pointed out the implementation of the strategic plan of the organization, which was inclusive, with the participation of young people and representatives of the civil sector, as well as a number of programs based on the strategic plan such as grant schemes and regional youth exchange and cooperation projects.
“The Regional Office for Youth Cooperation has a very clear vision of the future of the Western Balkans region, and that is that the Western Balkans region can have a future only in peace and cooperation”, said Edin Koljenović.
“With these six local annual events, RYCO wished to foster relationships with stakeholders from the Western Balkans with the aim of making a true change in the region. We brought almost 400 of them – government institutions, youth organizations, schools, youth workers, international organizations and media editors. As our slogan and the campaign’s title say, we deeply believe that a better region starts with YOUth. Join us in this mission and make the Western Balkans a better region that invests in youth and their regional mobility and cooperation”, RYCO Director of Programs Mr Jan Zlatan Kulenović outlined.
The one-and-a-half-hour event brought together RYCO partners and supporters – governments, international organizations, civil society, schools, media representatives and young people. During discussions with them, RYCO focused on exploring the field to improve cooperation with stakeholders at the local level.
Through six panel discussions, they answered the question and explained how RYCO carries out its programs at the local level, focusing on more than 100 projects supported with more than 2,500,000 euros.