UNSC Resolution 1244-administered Kosovo, 17 July - The European Union (EU) has provided funding support to the International Organization on Migration (IOM) to implement a second phase of its EU-Community Stabilisation Programme (EU-CSP) to run through December 2014 to improve the socio-economic circumstances of vulnerable minority groups in Kosovo.
These include ethnic Serbs, members of Kosovo’s Roma, Ashkali, and Egyptian (RAE), Turk, Gorani, Bosniak and Croat communities, as well as Albanian communities living in municipalities with a predominantly Serb population in northern Kosovo.
The 30-month EUR 3 million programme will target minority communities in 29 of the 38 municipalities of Kosovo, where minority groups are particularly affected by unemployment and poverty.
“With unemployment rates among these communities running at 60 to 80 per cent, the socio-economic needs, especially among the young, remain daunting,” says IOM programme manager Andrew Phelan.
To enhance the employment prospects of the targeted communities, the programme will provide technical assistance and productive business assets to aspiring entrepreneurs and will support on-going or start-up ventures. Community-driven projects will also be supported.
EU-CSP II, which builds on the achievements of EU-CSP I, which ran from May 2010 to June 2012, will again be implemented in close coordination with the European Union, Kosovo’s Ministry for Community and Returns, municipal officials and local stakeholders.
The EU office in Kosovo heralded the EU-CSP I as one of the best EU-funded programmes in Kosovo It implemented 179 new and existing micro-enterprises and 61 community development projects. It created 262 full-time and 201 part-time jobs and secured 401 other jobs. Overall, it impacted the lives of over 51,000 people, including beneficiary families, employees and members of the wider community.
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