In the framework of anti –trafficking awareness month Mary Wad Loreto Women’s Project, operating in Lezhe and jointly with Regional Directory of Social Services, organized an awareness meeting with Roma youth studying at the “Saint Mary” Youth Centre in Lezhe. During the meeting human trafficking was explained, types of human trafficking and who are the target groups at high risk of being trafficked. The discussion focussed a lot on “Saying No” to the marriages at a very young age since this is quite an evident phenomenon for this category of population. Emphasis was put on the need to continue their education in order to be able to overcome the obstacles and risks faced during a life-time.
A group of 20 youngsters’, boys and girls, engaged in writing messages against human trafficking. There is quite a high need in working with the parents of these children to avoid the marriages which they arrange for their children at a very young age. The meeting finished with a video on human trafficking and the exploitation of a Roma child begging on the streets. The aim will be to follow up these awareness meetings with Roma parents
The Service Learning Training Week in central and Eastern Europe, including the Conference and the TOT, took place from 2nd – 6th of October 2017 in Sarajevo. This was a wonderful opportunity to further improve our knowledge and to network with colleagues from the region and it was a great experience for moving more deeply into how to apply a real Service Learning project in a community context. The conference and training was led by experts of Service Learning from CLAYSS and MIOS from Tuzla. Service Learning is an innovative pedagogy that employs a holistic approach to encourage the development of relevant competencies. This is a response to both the educational challenges of the 21-st century and the needs of local communities. This week of conference, partners meeting and TOT, served to recognize and enhance comprehension of regional peculiarities and what brings us together.
Mary Ward Loreto Foundation staff and pedagogical staff from Rogationist’s School in Lezhe are now ready to initiate the implementation of the project. The steps have been agreed and we are eager to take this new initiative forward. The aim is to promote a new innovative pedagogical method in enabling students to be not only successful students into the future but also to prepare them as agents leading to social change.
To mark the EU Anti-Trafficking Day, October 18, 2017, Mary Ward Loreto Foundation in collaboration with other NGO`S, the Office of the National Coordinator for Fight Against Trafficking in Persons, Institutions, URAT Network and Ministry of Interior will organize awareness-raising activities against trafficking of human beings. The activities will take place in Tropoja, Puka, Shkodra, Lezha, Tirana, Lushnja and Këlcyra.
- A joint calendar of activities coordinated with the Ministry of Interior;
- Awareness raising with schools;
- Meetings with parents;
- Training with 9 school psychologists;
- TOT – a group of students training their co-workers on the fight against trafficking of human beings;
- Awareness-raising Activity with all partners and the above mentioned cities, on 18th of October;
The main purpose is to raise awareness on trafficking in human beings and increase the exchange of information, knowledge and best practices amongst the different actors working in this field. Each year, MWL organizes events to mark this day. MWL invites all actors working against human trafficking to join us in activities towards the elimination of trafficking in human beings.
Mary Ward Loreto attended a meeting with local partners: representatives from the Municipality of Bajram Cyrri, the Education Directorate, The Community School “Ali Podrimja”, representatives from the Police, the Directorate of Public Health and local NGO-s.
The aim of the meeting was to identify the key problems facing the city of Bajram Cyrri and to strengthen the cooperation between all the key stakeholders. The participants discussed the up-coming anti-trafficking month and the coordination of activities during this time.
Sasha Jesperson and Anne-Marie Barry, two young ladies working against Modern Slavery and anti-trafficking, are collecting data from different countries,identified as hot spots connected with trafficking, in order to do a research in collaboration with the UK government. They choose to come to Albania and have meetings with governmental institutions and other partners who work against human trafficking. They chose to have a meeting with the staff of MWL to discuss the problems and issues related to human trafficking. MWL was represented by Aferdita Gjoni, Gazmir Memaj and Alfred Matoshi. They gave a overall presentation of the mission of MWL within all the projects, and how the Foundation leads awareness raising campaigns against human trafficking and leads prevention programmes leading to practical solutions for vulnerable peoples in poverty and in crisis situations.
The team of MWL expressed the reality and the background of the Albanian victims, the source of trafficking, profiles of traffickers and a lot of more detailed information which was appreciated and valued as useful by Sasha and Anne-Marie for their research. They visited the MWL Women’s Advice Centre in Tirana where they met MWL staff psychologist and social worker, Irena Kraja and Arveda Baholli who work at the centre. There was an opportunity to share with the visitors the way in which MWL works in this advice centre working with crisis cases and emergency needs in collaboration with our partners and Governmental institutions. After this visit to the advice centre they were invited to join the team for a meal, which gave us opportunities to share more experiences in an informal and friendly environment.