SARAJEVO – Within the framework of the 4th RYCO Open Call for Project Proposals supported by the European Union, the Regional Youth Cooperation Office (RYCO) signed a contract with Mladi za mir (Youth for Peace). The signing ceremony took place at the premises of the RYCO Local Branch Office in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sarajevo, and was attended by representatives of RYCO and the awarded RYCO beneficiary. The contracting of the second beneficiary, the Balkan Investigative Reporting Regional Network (BIRN) took place online.
The awarded projects in Bosnia and Herzegovina will provide young people in the region with networking opportunities in the field of regional youth dialogue, peacebuilding and reconciliation.
The project developed by Youth for Peace will address the need for capacity building in the field of peacebuilding and regional dialogue among youth workers and civil society organizations. Moreover, it will create a pool of high-quality facilitators who will be carriers of devoted approaches to the reconciliation processes in the region. On the other hand, BIRN aims to address the lack of communication opportunities for youth in the region so they can share their common past stories and experiences by moving forward with the reconciliation process.
During the signing ceremony, the welcoming remarks were delivered by the Head of RYCO Local Branch Office in Bosnia and Herzegovina Ms Berina Bukva and Project Coordinator Mr Denis Piplaš.
“These two initiatives will help us immensely to keep the spirit of regional cooperation alive in the challenging times caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Both projects are addressing a RYCO key topic – dealing with the past, and will bring together young people through partner organizations from throughout the region,” Mr Piplaš emphasized.
“I am looking forward to seeing what we are going to make along the way with these two important projects. Youth for Peace will bring to attention the potential of youth work on reconciliation and peacebuilding in the Western Balkans, whereas BIRN will try to offer a great environment for past stories and youth dialogue in the spirit of reconciliation. Within this Call, the partnership between RYCO and the EU confirms that all of us need significant support and a dedicated approach for a better region,” Ms Bukva added.
In continuation, project representative from Youth for Peace Mr Daniel Eror highlighted that he genuinely opposes distrust, alienation and veiled hatred in the society and considers himself as compliance if he does not combat it.
“Youth for Peace, together with its partners, enjoys building capacities of youth workers in the field of peacebuilding and reconciliation, thus empowering civil society actors to be proactive, willing to take a step towards a more inclusive and sustainable society. It is a pleasure to see that RYCO recognizes our vision and is willing to be a partner of young people across the Western Balkans in this challenging endeavor,” Mr Eror stated.
The projects supported within the 4th RYCO Open Call are being implemented from February to October 2021, fostering reconciliation and regional youth cooperation, as well as strengthening the capacities of the civil society to adapt to the COVID-19 environment. Throughout the implementation of this call, innovative projects will provide youth in the region with new spaces for dialogue and engagement.
During the application phase, 129 applications were received which brought about 400 partnerships from the region. The overall financial envelope for the Call was 333,000 Euro.
The 4th RYCO Open Call for Project Proposals is financially supported by the European Union.