As part of the regional youth empowerment project YourJob, a regional online conference was held from 28 to 30 September. The conference was entitled Youth in the Balkans – Educated. Unemployed. On the go.

During the three days of the conference, 5 panel discussions were held on young people, their education, work experience, employability, challenges they face and opportunities provided to them. Also, the conference presented the results achieved so far in the implementation of the YourJob project .

Recordings of all panels can be viewed until the end of the year on the platform as well as on the social networks of the YourJob project.

Also, the virtual entrepreneurship fair was organized on the conference. which presented 40 grant winners within our project. Young Entrepreneurs had the opportunity to present their business for which they received financial and expert support through the YourJob project. You can stil visit this unique fair on the platformi.

The first panel was organized by Caritas Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the topic was: “What deprives young people in the region of a promising future”, which discussed the results of research on youth unemployment in the region with emphasis on socio-economic and socio-educational aspects. The panelists were Mr. Nermin Oruc, Mrs. Ivona Celebicic, and moderator was Mr. Miroslav Valenta.
The panel was also attended by aproximately twenty young people from Mostar, Capljina and Banja Luka, along with their GCs.

The second panel session on the topic: “Young women and employment opportunities in the region” was organized by Caritas Albania. Panelists Ms. Monika Kocaqi, Ms. Mariana Meshi and moderator Ms. Ariela Mitri together with young entrepreneurs discussed providing access to employment and better income opportunities and the position of women in the labor market.

The third panel session was held on Wednesday, September 29, 2021, on the topic: “Ways to get out of unemployment – what young people expect from society”, organized by Caritas Kosovo. The panel was attended by several young people who spoke about their own and other young people’s perspectives: what are the challenges and ideas that young people see for their future throughout the region? Speakers were Anita Aliu, Malsore Deidia, Azem Kukaqi, Parparim Lubishtani, Visar Idrizi, Besmir Salihu, Mentor Collaku, Alfred Pjetri, and the moderator was Mr. Luz Balaj.

The fourth panel session was organized by Caritas Serbia on the topic: “Success stories in supporting youth employment in the region.” This panel discussion brought together the main participants directly involved in employment and education in the transition of young people to the labor market. Models of good practice for labor market integration were presented, with special emphasis on working directly with young people, so that all participants could learn from each other. The panelists were Jelena Stefanović, Sven Dominković, Željko Skenderović, Mina Dobrijević, Marina Sokić, Tobias Noelke, Berina Bukva Alibašić, and the panel was moderated by Marina Savković.

On Thursday, September 30, 2021, the final fifth panel discussion was held on the topic “Looking back and forth: Two years of YourJob”, which was moderated by mr. Zlako Malic from Caritasa Bosina and Herzegovina. In this main part of the conference, the most significant achievements after two years of implementation of the YourJob program and future perspectives were presented. The main outcomes of the past two days of the conference and their implications for further cooperation and strategic work on increasing youth employment in the region were reviewed. The speakers were mr. Andreas Knapp, representative of Caritas Austria, Msgr. Michael Landau, President of Caritas Europe, who sent a video message of encouragement, the Archbishop of Belgrade, Msgr. Stanislav Hočevar, President of Caritas Serbia, representatives of donors and partners. It was especially interesting to present the achievements of the project, which was presented on behalf of the project by Mr. Miroslav Valenta, as well as the address of the four GCs working within the project. They explained the challenges of working in this pandemic time, the challenges in the employment and education of young people and the harmonization of training with the needs of the labor market. Very interesting was the personal experience of counselors who young people themselves went through periods of job search and career building a few years ago. In addition to consulting work in the project, they mastered other tasks, from administrative to negotiation and organizational. As mentioned by Ms. Anita Kožul, youth employment counselor from Bosnia and Herzegovina, all counselors have a great responsibility for young people, but also developed skills, and are like octopuses with many arms perform many tasks.

Caritas continues to empower young and other vulnerable categories