Stories

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How a women’s rights organization and the National Employment and Skills Agency in Albania are joining forces to support women survivors of violence integrate in the job market.
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Ema Meçaj is a 19-year-old activist from Albania, currently pursuing a degree in medicine at the University of Medicine in Tirana. A dedicated advocate for human rights, gender equality, and climate action, she recently co-moderated the regional youth consultation from December 13 to 14, 2023, in preparation for the 68th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW68). In this Interview, Ema Meçaj reflects on the youth consultations, outlines the key issues for this year’s CSW, and emphasizes the vital role of youth in advancing the gender equality agenda.
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Forty one percent of Albanian women active online have experienced some form of technology-facilitated violence in their lifetime – the new research “The Dark Side of Digitalization: Technology-Facilitated Violence Against Women in Eastern Europe and Central Asia” shows.
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They are asking for increased long-term, sustainable investments from government, private sector, foundations, and other donors to prevent violence against women and girls.
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On October 27, 2023, more than 40 women-led businesses from Albania participated in the “Women’s Entrepreneurship EXPO” satellite event in Tirana, alongside partners from the private sector, government, and various stakeholders.
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Silvana Subashi is a 47-year-old woman entrepreneur from Albania who is the administrator of Subashi Olive Oil, a cultivation and production oil company that has won many gold medals. A finance graduate with two children, Silvana will participate in the upcoming Women’s Entrepreneurship EXPO 2023 satellite event, taking place on October 27 in Tirana, Albania.
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The UN Resident Coordinator’s Office and UN Women Albania co-organized an online training on the Gender Equality Marker (GEM) and the Human Rights Marker (HRM). The overall aim of the training was to ensure that the GEM and HR Marker scoring will be accurate for the upcoming Joint Work Planning cycle, which will cover the 2024-2025 period. The training was also an important step for ensuring the accuracy of markers is instrumental for adequately score UNCT SWAP Indicator 6.1, which verifies whether adequate resources for gender mainstreaming are allocated and tracked.
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In a dedicated effort to promote gender equality and eliminate all forms of discrimination against women, Albania is preparing for its fifth report to the Committee on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), scheduled for October 18, 2023.
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A two-day workshop on gender participatory budgeting and community outreach practices brought together civil society organizations, local government representatives, activists, and gender-responsive budgeting experts from Albania and North Macedonia.
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Toxic masculinities, rigid gender stereotypes, hate speech and media representation of traditional gender roles increase the risk of violence, particularly against women, which is considered to be the most widespread form of violence throughout the region – according to a new research supported by UN Women.
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Ejona Zaimaj, recalls her challenging journey to becoming a successful entrepreneur in Albania and explores her new possibilities.
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After six years of dedicated work, the UN Women regional programme Ending Violence Against Women and Girls in the Western Balkans and Turkyie “Implementing Norms, Changing Minds” comes to a close. Civil society organizations, government representatives and partners met to take stock of achievements, challenges, and the way forward.
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Fake news, misinformation, and hate speech are causing significant harm to mental health, exacerbating social divisions, and eroding trust in public institutions throughout the Western Balkans. Marginalized groups, particularly women and girls, are frequently targeted by hate speech. Of particular concern is the role of social media, which has become a fertile breeding ground for disinformation.
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In the last two years, thanks to support from the European Union-funded regional programme on ending violence against women “Implementing Norms, Changing Minds,” more than 3,000 women survivors have used the helpline for information, referrals and reporting – 900 of whom further obtained free legal aid and psychosocial counselling as well as referrals to more specialized support services.
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Supported by a small grant from the UN Trust Fund, the Center "Shelter Edlira Haxhiymeri", in close partnership with the Streha Center for LBT women survivors of domestic violence, runs a project to end violence against women and girls in four remote areas of Albania.
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Gjeline Doda, from Lezha, northwest Albania, is one of the first educators in Albania certified as an Empowerment Self-Defense (ESD) instructor in 2021. Apart from teaching high school math, which she has been doing for almost 15 years, she is now working to empower and teach personal safety to a new generation by boosting students’ self-esteem and communications skills to prevent and mitigate the risk of violence.
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Thirty experts including government officials from ministries of finances, national gender mechanisms, local government representatives and supreme audit institutions, together with UN Women officials from across the Western Balkans met in Tirana, Albania on 3-4 May to monitor the progress in the implementation of the project “Transformative Financing for Gender Equality towards more Transparent, Inclusive and Accountable Governance in the Western Balkans” In 2022.
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130 youth participated in UN Women consultations organized in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo*, Serbia, and North Macedonia.
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The local government elections on 14 May are an important opportunity to strengthen local democracy in Albania, and to consolidate past achievements in promoting women leadership in decision-making. Ahead of the start of the campaign, the United Nations in Albania reached out to political party leaders, advocating for women’s full and meaningful participation in local elections, and presenting a set of recommendations in three key areas.
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Around 20 journalists and media experts joined the media forum on "Media and Violence Against Women in Politics and Elections" organized prior to Albania’s Local Elections taking place on the 14th of May, by UN Women and its partner organization "Together for Life". Participants in the event discussed the various challenges faced by women in politics and elections and the crucial role of the media in addressing them.