Elez Bislim

The main aim of the project was to raise the awareness among of young Rroma IMG_0438from 3 Rroma neighborhoods in Skopje about their social rights and to improve their access to employment and health services trough human rights education, mediaton with social services.The project covered the following main themes: Human Rights, Social Rights, Unemployment, Health and Education.

The project had the following objectives:

  • 1. To promote citizenship and human rights within the Rroma Community;
  • 2. To create links between Rroma people and social care services;
  • 3. To create possibilities for easy access to information for employment;
  • 4. To create structure for easy access to health care and health care prevention;
  • 5. To underline importance of the school and provide information on possible scholarship and professional orientation.

The methodology used within the project involved community outreach, students’ needs assessment, and workshops for students to address these needs interactively.

This project targeted Rroma young people in the age between 13 and 18 from three different disadvantaged communities in Skopje: Topaana, Shuto Orizari and Singelik. The role of the young people was to help in the field work, assist the experts, and act as leaders.

The Topaana neighbourhood (in Skopje) with 5 000 residents is inhabited by RRroma people only. It is an area of social and economic disadvantage that results in high level of unemployment, low education level, poor and overcrowded housing, poor health, high crime rate, lack of leisure and sport facilities.

Target group:

60 Rroma young people, most of them are shool drop-outs or never attended school; indirectly the project reached some 180 young people in Topaana community.

Social rights addressed:

Access to unemployment, access to social services, access to education (formal and non formal), access to health care.

Local authorities involved:

Topaana Municipality Chair , Employment Agency


The students and Sumnal helped 50 kids to get the scholarship (Secondary Rroma students) from the Rroma Education Fund (REF) and the Ministry of Education.

The students learnt and experienced communication with people from the communities. They also learnt how to create projects and programs for the workshops. People from the communities of Topaana, Shuto Orizari, and Singelik know now where to find help in different matters they are helpless about. The spirit of solidarity can be felt in the neighbourhood.

The young people and the Sumnal team helped 10 familes to submit their documents to receive monthly benefits, which, according to the law, was due to them after they had the third child.

We helped 15 young people to submit necessary documentation to get work as cleaners. This was done with the support of Employment and Social Services Agency. The link between Sumnal and the agency will continue also after the project.

15 young people participated in the courses where they also learnt about the how to apply for the job.

The project succeed to create partnership with signed Memoranda with Ministry of Education, Ministry of labour and Social Care, Municipality Department for Education and State Employment Agency.

Follow-up and sustainability:

We wish to continue with this project with Sumnal. We are planning workshops for young people to develop their competences in communication, so that they can become peer educators and transfer knowledge into the community. For us, it was the first time to have young people being involved in the community and communicating with relevant institutions and transferring the relevant information for the community in the area of education, housing, health, human rights. We plan to continue our good relations with the social service departments that we worked with, as well as to keep track of the people who we contacted and continue to offer them opportunities in the future.

Status of the project: Implemented