UNDP is one of the primary advocates for the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Because UNDP works on many levels, from the local to the international, and with an array of partners, UNDP is able to extend MDG advocacy in diverse directions. Put together, this is snowballing into a global drive attracting new resources and yielding an extraordinary number of powerful alliances: among youth, sports stars, politicians, community leaders, journalists, business people, artists, academics, religious leaders, trade union members and civil society activists.
Following the adoption of Millennium Development Declaration by the Assembly of Kosovo, UNDP Kosovo initiated its MDG in the Assembly Project which aims at raising awareness among lawmakers in assisting them in translating formal commitments derived from the Resolution into concrete actions.UNDP Kosovo engages well-known Kosovo personalities in spreading the word and supporting the MDG advocacy campaign. Our MDG Champions work on voluntary basis and are invited to assume this role by the UNDP Resident Representative. Famous Kosovo-born soccer player Mr. Lorik Cana actively advocates for MDG’s and through his popularity has spread the messages among Kosovo youth, students and media. Ms. Arta Dobroshi, a rising international actress become UNDP’s MDG Champion in 2008 and ever since has jointed office’s efforts to increase local ownership. Mr. Zoran Ristic, a renowned film director has disseminated the MDG messages among Serbian-speaking community in Kosovo.
UNDP Kosovo launched the Human Development Report on Social Inclusion in Kosovo in 2011. The aim of the report was to generate policy debate about tackling poverty and social exclusion in Kosovo. The launching of the report followed a number of roundtables discussions with policy makers, parliament members, civil society organizations, local government representatives and representatives of the media. The main conclusions of the report were that poverty in Kosovo remains high and above regional averages, poverty is more concentrated in rural areas, poverty and lack of education opportunities seem to be correlated, poverty affects health and overall wellbeing of the people in Kosovo and finally it is more prevalent among women, youth and ethnic minorities. In the same year, the programme launched the Poverty Week campaign which saw several high level activities targeting different audiences. The campaign was concluded with the ceremony of the Poverty Award held in October 2011.
Poverty Prize (PP) is established to recognize and encourage excellence in reporting poverty in Kosovo. The goal of the award is to raise awareness among the public about causes and effects of poverty, portray the socially excluded groups and offer a voice to the vulnerable groups. The Poverty Prize has been established by the United Nations Agencies working the Association of Professional Journalists in recognition of the importance of the mass media's influence on the public agenda and in order to promote public debate about poverty in Kosovo. This award will be granted once a year to journalists and media professionals who have demonstrated excellence and professional integrity in the coverage of poverty issues in the printed and electronic media, including television and radio and/or who have produced an article, series of articles or programs which, in the jury's estimation, have made a significant contribution to the understanding of Kosovo poverty issues and causes and/or had a significant impact on public opinion and policy makers. The award ceremony was held in 21 October 2011. The prizes have been awarded for the best photography (Driton Pacarda), best Social Media story on population (Fatmir Haxholli), Best story on education exclusion ( Buurije Baraliu - Koha Ditore), Best story on economic exclusion (Fisnik Minci - Koha Ditore), best story on health exclusion (Diana Basholli - Klan Kosova), best radio story on povery (Ermal Panduri - Radio Dukagjini).
UNDP Kosovo has been accelerating the integration of gender dimensions in all sectors therefore increasing its performance in delivering for women and men. Advancing gender security and justice remains the principal priority. Emphasis is also being placed on protecting women's social, economical political and cultural lives while promoting sustainable livelihoods. Subsequently promoting accountability of Government and institutions to implement gender sensitive laws and ensure that resource mobilization, aid coordination, budgeting and funds allocation, are all guaranteed to be gender responsive. Finally UNDP Kosovo aims to increase women's roles in decision making. These goals are in line with UNDP Gender Equality Strategy, UNDP 8 Point Agenda and Millennium Development Goal on Gender Equality.
Advocacy on gender equality has been sustained throughout the year and in several approaches. The advocacy strategy has been channeled towards different audiences and tackling various root causes of gender inequality. Firstly, the programme has been working closely with the Policy and Research Unit to produce research-based evidence to inform plans and actions on gender equality. Secondly, it has been working closely with UNDP projects to channel resources and efforts to this important goal. Thirdly, it has been working closely with Kosovo Government and Gender Equality Office in particular to adopt laws and regulation which protect the rights of women and mainstream gender into all government political, economic and social affairs. Finally, it has partnered institutions, civil society organizations and media to raise awareness on domestic violence, gender inequality and the need to empower women. The key themes of the advocacy and awareness strategy have been: (a) women participation in political and civic initiatives and institutions remains low, (b) women unemployment and opportunities are well below of men in Kosovo, (c) about 20% of Kosovo women are subject to domestic violence.
UNDP Kosovo has been advocating for environmental sustainability in 2011. The crux of the campaign was centered in biodiversity protection in Dragash area, industrial waste removal in Trepca complex, and raising awareness on the importance of environment. The same year, UNDP in cooperation with the Association of Professional Journalists of Kosovo established the Environmental Journalism Award to recognize and encourage excellence in reporting on environmental challenges in Kosovo.
To mark the International HIV/Aids Day on 1 December, five short movies made by youth will be presented. This is the third edition of "Youth 48 Hours Video Fest on HIV/AIDS" and this year it gathers 30 Kosovan youngsters that will be making five short films that tackle HIV/AIDS and related issues.Youth were invited to apply through the existing youth networks, NGO's, youth centers and high schools. They were asked to share their point of view by creating 5 short films tackling prevention and fight against HIV/AIDS in Kosovo.The teams were trained and accompanied by professional Kosovo filmmakers who mentored and trained the youngsters to sharpen their skills related to filmmaking.