PODGORICA – RYCO Local Branch Office in Montenegro hosted a visit by Mr Sebastian Maass from Interkulturelles Netzwerk (Germany), Mr Maxime Boitieux from Peuple Et Culture (France) and Ms Lea Cikos from Volunteers’ Centre of Vojvodina (Serbia).
Head of RYCO Local Branch Office in Montenegro Mr Edin Koljenović used this opportunity to present RYCO’s mission, achieved results and ongoing activities at the local and regional levels, while Mr Maass, Mr Boitieux and Ms Cikos explained the long history of cooperation between their organizations and the Franco-German Youth Office (FGYO).
Ms Cikos emphasized already organized numerous youth exchanges, cooperation meetings, training and seminars, including the “Basic training for leaders of intercultural exchanges”. The training is targeting young leaders from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo*, Montenegro, and Serbia, with the primary focus on language animation.
Mr. Boitieux added that with this training future intercultural facilitators are learning more about each other, at the same time acquiring practical skills by organizing a wide range of youth activities.
“After completing our course, youth leaders even receive the FGYO’s Facilitator Certificate for intercultural youth meetings and are added to the facilitator database,” Mr Maass stressed.
Mr Koljenović pointed out numerous challenges for regional cooperation, underlying challenges faced by high schools in the Western Balkans.
“Lack of cooperation often represents a challenge, especially for schools that struggle to find partners from other Contracting Parties in order to apply for RYCO grants,” he said.
The meeting also discussed the potential future cooperation, putting the focus on bringing certified intercultural facilitators from Montenegro closer to RYCO and its activities. Mr Koljenovic expressed gratitude for the guests’ interest in the work of RYCO and promised that the RYCO Local Branch Office in Montenegro will spread a word about the next call for future intercultural leaders.
*This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence