The Ideas Partnership was registered as an NGO in Kosovo in March 2009. Its founding members are Ardian Arifaj, Robert Wilton and myself. The organisation is without political or religious affiliation and we work on education, environmental, cultural heritage and community support projects in Kosovo. For information, see our website. You can also read about the visit of a reporter for the UK's Independent newspaper to Kosovo and to our projects and the recent visit of HRH The Duchess of Cornwall to our learning centre in Kosovo.

We are very proud to have been awarded the EU's prize for Roma integration for our work in Kosovo and that Prime Minister Theresa May this year selected us as one of the 'Points of Light' around the world for volunteering.
To date we have:

*supported the Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian community in Fushe Kosove/ Kosovo Polje, registering over 300 children for school, helping to ensure more than 60 children caught up with missed vaccinations, a clothing transfer to around 1000 people each year and education (about 80 kids attend our Saturday activities each week and others come to weekly dance and art classes). We offer physiotherapy sessions each week to children with special needs, along with their mothers.  You can meet one of the families we work with in my article for Prishtina Insight newspaper and read more about beginning teaching with kids from this community out of school at www.gettinggjelanetoschool.wordpress.com.

*worked with a group of local activists from the Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian community in Fushe Kosove to start a daily kindergarten for 60 children
*set up microfinance initiatives making cloth bags, olive oil soap, candle holders, lavender bags and jewellery. These products are made by women whose children we supported to register in school. You can see the products and place an order on our dedicated website or the project's Facebook page

*run an education support programme in Janjevo running a summer project to support kids into school, and continuing to help them with homework after school hours

*offered bursaries for adults wanting to continue their education by getting their high school diploma at evening classes, or continuing to university

*supported widows to keep their children in education through our Widows' Fund

*supported about 40 women a week with antenatal classes, making sure that babies are born safely in hospital

 





*produced the 'Kosovo Green Pages' guide to green living in Kosovo (available to download free in English, Albanian and Serbian at www.KosovoGreenPages.wordpress.com)

*supported the twinning of Pristina's Ethnological Museum with the Cambridgeshire Folk Museum

*
launched a campaign against plastic bags

 
*run a summer photography project where children in Fushe Kosove presented their community through their eyes, in some stunning photographs

*run a summer programme in Rugova, developing environmental awareness among the area's young people.  The camp was organised jointly with local NGO, ERA, and the Balkan Peace Park project. Read more on page 15 of the most recent Trans-Boundary Protected Areas network newsletter.or in articles written by others about the programme in Albanian and English.

*supported the Gjakova Safe House women's shelter (for victims of trafficking and survivors of domestic violence) with materials


*donated books to the library in Mitrovica

 
*toured a photography exhibition showcasing Kosovo's cultural heritage (most recently displayed in the teqe in Gjakova)

*supported the micro-finance project, KosovaKards, selling greetings cards which incorporate traditional solid silver filigree made in Prizren

*launched a successful campaign to save an old konak style house in Pristina which was scheduled for demolition on the Ministry of Culture's list of protected buildings.  The BBC World Service interviewed me about the Facebook campaign.and Cornerstone magazine, of the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings, published my article about the campaign.

*worked as part of a coalition of NGOs lobbying against the dredging which is destroying the Drin i Bardh river.  Watch the interview with me about the issue on Kosovo's KTV.



We are currently looking for volunteers, funding and support for:


*teaching English or other subjects in our kindergarten or our weekly academic support activities for older children

*developing a curriculum for English, maths and Albanian in our Saturday activities

*marketing and selling the products of our microfinance initiatives

*tackling early marriage and domestic violence

*blogging about or photographing our work

*fundraising - from grants or individuals, in Kosovo, the UK and beyond




For more information, email us at office@theideaspartnership.org

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