Under one roof
Under the Joint UN programme “Enhancing Inter-ethnic Communication and Dialogue” UNICEF is supporting youth centers in Kumanovo, Kicevo and Struga. The purpose of the youth centers is to offer extracurricular activities like drama, animation, dance, pottery, journalism and many more, all aiming at providing more opportunities for young people from different ethnic backgrounds to get to know each other better and fully enjoy each other's culture and values.
The activities in the youth centers are bilingual (Macedonian and Albanian) and serve as tool to enhance the inter-ethnic dialogue. Activites in the youth centres are mixed by gender and ethnicity and are facilitated by both Macedonian and Albanian trainers.
These Youth Centers offer these cities something that they were lacking for quite a long time. A place where all feel welcome; a place where the democratic principles rule; where friendship blossoms, all through activities designed to promote tolerance and improve communication.
According to a recent UNICEF Study on Multiculturalism and Inter-ethnic Relations in Education, many schools throughout the country are divided along ethnic and language lines. This trend has contributed to some students, stereotyping and having prejudicial attitudes against those outside their own ethnic communities. UNICEF recognizes the importance, of the extracurricular activities and strongly supports the Youth Centers because apart of improving the inter-ethnic dialogue, they are an excellent opportunity to enhance creative thought and individual expression, creative thinking, imagination, and most of all freedom of expression.
To find out more about the Joint UN programme “Enhancing Inter-ethnic Communication and Dialogue” visit the UN web site at http://www.un.org.mk/