February 20, 2024

3rd Call for Proposals

Lead Applicant – Jazz Art

Project Name – Balkan Youth Jazz Orchestra

A musical experience unlike any with the Balkan Youth Jazz Orchestra. Western Balkans Fund, through this innovative project proudly brings people together through music. Young composers, players and musicians combine their knowledge of contemporary classical music with ideas present in jazz, in many domains, contributing not only to orchestration and composition, but also in enjoying togetherness through music. This amazing project is a showcase of the real cultural cooperation and is the result of a joint, multicultural, and cross-border youth jazz orchestra. Balkan Youth Jazz Orchestra is a beacon of change, and it helps bringing closer young musicians to the mission of WBF’s – which is regional cooperation, good neighborly relations and strengthening of the regional cohesion in the WB region. This project serves as a base for creating regional connections and networks of young jazz musicians and composers, as well as for strengthening the cooperation between partner institutions, all to improve and promote talented musicians and composers living and creating in the Balkans.

Lead Applicant – Ulice za Bicikliste

Project Name – From sustainable mobility to sustainable peace

Discover Western Balkans amazing scenery, roads, culture, people, summer. Take that bike and group of friends and cycle in our amazing region. Unsure of the roads, destinations and spots? No need to be! All you need to do is to download the app on Balkan Cycling and have an experience you never thought you could. Ask the 15 young people who did take the trip. The group of enthusiasts took a 15-days bike caravan in 5 focal cities in the Western Balkans. The app developed for an easier ride and discovery helped the youth to experience the region at another level, full of adrenaline, common scope and aim.25 focal activities helped the organized to reach the final stage (bike tour). To enable that, excessive preparations took place in the form of lectures, meetings held with local stakeholders, sites visit (to museums, ethnos-villages, national parks, etc.), cleaned and/or beautified 5 public spaces. 15 people started this adventure, but the number got to 300 attendees in the multiple peer-to-peer educational activities as the group prepared to experience Western Balkans by bike.

Lead Applicant – Artlink

Project Name – Camerata Balcanica – United through music

Have you heard yet the concerts of 12 young musicians from all the Balkans? They’ve performed in Belgrade, Novi Sad and Tirana. If you’ve missed the chance, you can still enjoy the rhythm of togetherness that Camerata Balcanica inspires in their audio, CD and Video, featuring the live performances by the amazing band that unites people through music. This project aimed showcasing the positive effects of joint youth creativity within and beyond the region under the moto “United Trough Music”.

Lead Applicant – Digi.ba

Project Name – Roman heritage in the Balkans

How would you like a virtual tour on the common Roman cultural heritage we share in the Balkans? Digi.Ba partners have made a video that takes us back in time and walk us through the whole region in a very attractive approach via storytelling and VR application. It takes just a few minutes to visit virtually the monuments in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, and Albania showing how our region shares this common cultural heritage demonstrated in Roman villa and terme in Ilidza near Sarajevo, Roman military camp and city Viminacium near Pozarevac, Serbia, Municipium settlement near Pljevlja, Montenegro and Durres amphitheater in Albania, all presented through VR storytelling. The user friendly application is available online and installed in local museums, close to the selected archaeological sites. It allows the Internet users and museum visitors to take a virtual walk-through Balkans in the Roman period and learn about monuments preserved only in fragments in selected sites and listening to relevant explanations. The project is also improving cooperation and exchange between experts such as archaeologists, historians, IT people, moviemakers in the region.

Lead Applicant – Athletic Club Ohrid TrcaT

Project Name – Ohrid Trcat

The initiative aimed to change the way in which sport is currently recognized only as connected to physical wellbeing. Based on the cooperation and the exchange of practices, Ohrid Trcat will continue to aim at initiating topics to be addressed in the future such as enhancing the societal role of sport, promoting public health through physical activity, boosting volunteer activities, enhancing the economic dimension of sport and the free movement of players, fighting doping, corruption and hooliganism. Over 500 participants took part in the 5k and 21k marathon races. As parallel activities to the main event, project partners implemented two workshops on the topic of challenges and advantages of organizing sports events in light of a global pandemic and volunteering on sports events, where participants got actively engaged and shared their experience and know-how.

Lead Applicant – Balkan Network for Local Democracy

Project Name – WB Cultours

Tourism, local ideas, regional solutions: all encountered in the forum “Western Balkans Tourism in the spotlight”, organized to connect the Western Balkans trough tourism, offering the chance to touristic workers and stakeholders from WB6 to meet and talk in the frame of this project. The event was part of a series of discussions and short presentations in an open forum, sharing experiences from the Balkans. It offered a great meeting point to network, make connections and even create a joint touristic offer. Touristic guides, workers and enthusiasts shared their experience about the topic of Tourism in Western Balkans. A special treat: Cultours, the mobile application that offers 3 tours to visit 9 monuments in the Western Balkans was promoted.

Lead Applicant – National Center of Mediterranean Theatre

Project Name – Butrinti Summer Festival – 18’th edition

In a festive spirit to celebrate the start of summer season in Albania, organizers of the Butrinti Film Festival presented in Saranda the documentary “The future begins today”. A dynamic atmosphere with the presence of many friends and public in the coastal city. The documentary “The future begins today”, supported by the Western Balkans Fund brings history, experiences and cultural exchange between many artists from all our region!

Lead Applicant – Tulla Culture Cente

Project Name – Youth skills development through New Media

Western Balkans future lies in its young people and its talents, that continue to flourish each and every day in world’s scene. Having a large young population in Europe under 25 years old, it presents the need to harness their skills and continue investing in them in modern and alternative education. TULLA – Culture Centre, through this project aimed to pilot a music production academy with a focus in new media, including skills in production and art management by training at least 40 young participants in the music industry every year.

Lead Applicant – Culture and Arts Center Korca

Project Name – Virtual Stage of Folklore Music

The project was mainly focused around putting up a virtual stage with rich folklore music which promoted the traditional music, the costumes, the lyrics, the symbols, folk dances etc and highlighted how the beauty of each CP makes up a culturally rich region. The new reality under the COVID 19 pandemic brought the need to create online options to promote the rich cultural heritage. So, the project created virtual meeting, joint videos with songs and dances with Balkan common motives. The videos of the traditional songs and dances were an added value for the 4 partners to enable better promotion, knowledge and the importance of the cultural heritage in the region.

Lead Applicant – Academy of Social Sciences

Project Name – Illyrians a common heritage

The project connected writers, artists and students from the region in order to establish cooperation and to highlight common Illyrian heritage in architecture, art, literature. Through creative writing and comic book workshops, the students were offered an opportunity to exchange knowledge on common heritage and express their views in a creative manner. Upon the conclusion of the workshops, all writers were invited to submit their fantasy and fiction short stories about Ancient Illyrian history and kingdoms which were published and promoted.

Lead Applicant – SOCEN

Project Name – European Identity and the European value system as connecting points of the Western Balkans

Sociological Centre of Montenegro – SOCEN

Think of a Regional School of European Integration. Think Budva, Socen and WBF. It gives the full picture of an inspiring closing event: Three day summer schools that gathered graduate, postgraduate students and researchers from partner universities with the aim to improve their knowledge on the EU integration process and to stimulate mobility and exchange of lecturers and young researchers from Montenegro, Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. The project further enhanced the education and scientifi c exchange through the signing of the memorandum of cooperation between the three faculties, and additionally through the development of a common curriculum and the establishment of a Balkan academic network. It encouraged as well the development of regional initiatives in educational academia and research and it supported the increase in volume of common educational tools and their regional exchange.

Lead Applicant – Chamber of Nurses

Project Name – International Congress on Nursing

We all called them “heroes” during the pandemic, but have you ever thought of the psychological burden of health workers during the Covid-19 crises? What about the quality of life and stress of nurses during the epidemiological emergency in regional hospitals? What do we know on the effects it had on pregnant women or mothers who gave birth during the pandemic? What was the impact of (truncated) social support received during covid-19 pandemic on maternal postpartum depression? These were questions that did not cross people’s mind on the everyday life, but they certainly occupy the mind and affect those who provide the crucial health services mentioned above: nurses and midwives of our region. From a caring and professional perspective, all these issues were discussed in the First Balkan Congress organized by the Chamber of Nurses, Midwives, and other Professionals in Kosovo – OIK, unveiling “The role, importance and challenges of nurses, midwives and other health professionals during the Covid-19 pandemic”. An intensive event that brought together 25 presentations, in 4 sessions, with 8 professional moderators and 12 representatives from institutions and associations of nurses and midwifes, from the 6 Balkan Contracting Parties, as well as Croatia, Slovenia and Turkey.

Lead Applicant – Ekonomiks

Project Name – The role of urban planning on migration

The project aimed to address one of the significant aspects, considered a factor which is causing migration in the Western Balkans, and that is the quality of life in capital cities in the region: Belgrade, Pristina, Podgorica, Skopje, Sarajevo, and Tirana. These cities share a common history, particularly in the last two decades when demographic changes have dramatically increased the need for expansion in the bigger cities and most cases this has exacerbated the urban planning process. Architects and urban planners are a valuable asset for societies, and with their professional approach, they can help to build functional cities. This project provided an opportunity for professionals (architects/urban planners) to expand their network in the region and to learn more about how societies in the region are coping with this phenomenon.

Lead Applicant – Institute for Sociological, Political and Juridical Research

Project Name – WB Group on Political Clientelism

In what shapes and forms does political clientelism operate in the Western Balkans? 20 scholars have a good answer to that, and they shared in detail their research on political clientelism in our societies, in the activity organized by the Institute for Sociological, Political and Juridical Research, Ss. Cyril and Methodius University in Skopje). The scholars authored about 30 papers and shared their views in the series of discussion on the state of clientelism studies in the region. A very interesting approach, that captured the attention of more than 500 followers as the organizers launched the book “Studying Political Clientelism in the Western Balkans”!

Lead Applicant – Luarasi University

Project Name – Strengthening regional academic and research exchange

“How regional University Cooperation can improve business cooperation – ideas, challenges and expectations “– it was the core issue, dealt with in a number of academic ways, including forums and conference, part of the project “Strengthening Regional Academic and Research Exchange” between Luarasi University Albania, FON University in North Macedonia and University of Zenica in Bosnia and Herzegovina and DonjaGorica University Montenegro! It was a great opportunity for everyone to reach the large assemblage of participants from academia, researchers, junior researchers, and other professionals. The academic events provided unique and rational opportunities to all the academics and researchers from the fi elds of Philosophy & Law, Economics, Information Technology & Innovation, Engineering, and others.

Lead Applicant – Observatory for Children and Youth Rights

Project Name – Improving children rights monitoring mechanisms around Western Balkan Region

The projects introduced the Observatory initiative on monitoring the implementation of Children’s Rights in three Contracting Parties of the Region, Kosovo, North Macedonia and Serbia and to increase knowledge and skills of CSOs & activists concerning access to information on the implementation of children’s rights.

Lead Applicant – Impact Hub

Project Name – Regional Capital (ReCap) Market

Project aimed to improve and strengthen regional innovation ecosystem for start-ups and innovative business initiatives in the Balkans, and as such it contributed to a sustainable and innovation based economic development and increase of competitiveness of the WB6 region start-ups at global market. The proposed solution in reaching to project objectives foresaw realization of the Regional Capital Market Conference (ReCap), which increased access to alternative finance and investing (ie. Business angels, venture capitalists) for innovative startups and businesses. ReCap created regional market opportunities for 60 start ups from the region with the purpose to accelerate start up innovation and growth to the markets of scale by providing the unique feed-forward methodology via agile mentoring sessions with international experts, start-ups and investors – 50 mentors, 20 investors, 150 entrepreneurs from the region. Moreover, the sustainability of the project was strengthened since the lead implementing Organization is a part of the global network with over 90 Impact hubs and 15000 community members, partners, mentors and investors from all over the world.

Lead Applicant – European Movement in Serbia

Project Name – Regional Green Youth Charter

Can students take a more active role in fair transition to renewable energy production? Can they develop advocating tools on Regional Green Youth Charter (RGYC)? European Movement Serbia proved that they can, with the adequate training and support by donors and partners. This is exactly what the project “Regional Green Youth Charter” did, under the inspiring guidance of the European Movement in Serbia and the project partners from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo* and Montenegro. EMS conducted impactful trainings and activities with students to raise awareness of youth on importance of transition to renewable energy production. These empowered trainees are now taking a more active role in their local communities towards fair transition to renewable energy production.

Lead Applicant – Centre for Local and Regional Development Support

Project Name – Strengthening role of women in promoting peace and cooperation in Western Balkan region through capacity building and education

Is the chain as strong as its’ weakest link? No! It is much stronger if all links are represented by women. An outstanding group of women demonstrated exactly this side, as they worked together to promote peace, reconciliation, and cooperation in Western Balkans. But how? By having the first and last say in a series of events that contribute to increasing women activism and capacity building. Lead by a group of active women from civil society in Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia, this initiative, supported by the Western Balkans Fund is contributing to women’s participation in reconciliation process in WB region through capacity building and education.

Lead Applicant – Chamber of Doing Business (ODA) in Kosovo

Project Name – Regional Conference “Economic Impact and Consequences of the Crisis”

What is the impact of Covid-19 in the regional business cooperation? How it is being addressed? What have we learned, as we define the best modalities and ways to increase the cooperation? All these questions were answered at the Regional Conference dedicated to the impact of Covid-19 Pandemic on the business and economic situation in the Western Balkans, one of the many events organized by ODA.

Lead Applicant – Business Consultants Council

Project Name – Regional Cooperation on Global Consulting Day 2020

The project aimed to link and enhance the management consulting capacities by exchanging the best practices from Kosovo, Albania and North Macedonia through the implementation of the very first regional conference for Global Consulting Day. This joint event, consisted in a regional conference and seminar, gathering both management consultants and business community (up to 150 participants, to canalize the ways of cooperation and leak the projects, activities and services that the consultants could benefit from each other and at the same time learn from the strategic actions undertaken by the success stories of partners.

Lead Applicant – Public institution “Retirement Home with a Stationary”

Project Name – Healthy Aging

Our beloved elderlies deserve to have an active and healthy lifestyle. Hence, ZDK Retirement Home took the initiative to bring a livelier approach to the third age group in our region. Their meaningful efforts were made in cooperation with the Association “Creatives” from Zenica, Banja Luka Archdiocese – CARITAS Banja, Gerontology Center Vrsac (Serbia), Home for the Elderly and Grabovac” Risan (Montenegro). All sought to contribute to regional cooperation and healthy aging. It is visible the improved quality of life and creativity of the elderly in the target communities through workshops on photography, painting and other recreational activities for a healthier and dignified aging!

Lead Applicant – Youth Entrepreneurial Service Foundation

Project Name – Partnership for circular economy – sustainable SMEs growth and regional development

What are your thoughts on the circular economy? Our implementing partners from the Youth Entrepreneurial Service Foundation (Yes Foundation) in Skopje introduced the circular economy concept and have started to build skills among businesses and CSOs for transition to circular economy. Amongst other benefits, circular economy contributes to job creation and sustainable development. With the adequate support and promotion, the circular economy concept has proven to be an effective new approach in enhancing regional development through networking and strengthening SMEs and CSOs capacities around it. The project is passionate about increasing the capacities of 60 SMEs and CSOs for implementing the circular economy concept into their businesses, to raise awareness amongst 70 others and to create new job opportunities on long-term.

*This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence