Communication and Partnership
Investment in children must start early in life.
Investment in children must start early in life. Children need to grow up healthy and in a safe environment, and when they become adolescents, they need technical and soft skills, including adaptability, entrepreneurial skills, emotional intelligence, critical thinking and leadership at work and in life. Yet, the opportunity of investing in children and young people in Kosovo is time bound, as decreasing birth rates and migration are creating a demographic shift that progressively closes the window of opportunity for accelerating economic growth and social inclusion.
Avoiding crises in education, social inclusion, and participation, and fully seizing the promise of a better future requires communication, advocacy, and solutions that must be interconnected, sustainable and evidence-based.
The public space in Kosovo remains dominated by daily politics overshadowing the agenda for children and youth. It is therefore challenging for UNICEF and partners to influence the agenda of decision-makers to prioritize children’s and adolescents’ issues.
No institution alone can achieve long-lasting results for children. The multiplier effect of synergizing communication and partnership will engender strong, sustainable impact and efficiencies that allow even limited resources to go a long way and reach the hardest to reach.
All children have an equal right to survive, thrive and fulfil their potential. We use communication to engage with communities and empower them to take action to improve their lives.
Our communication reflects the core conviction that by focusing on the most disadvantaged children we build stronger societies and a more equitable world for all children.
We use traditional and new media for two major purposes: to amplify the voices of children, adolescents and communities by harnessing the power of communication to promote development, protection and participation; and to tell the UNICEF story across multiple platforms to ensure buy-in and build public support for our objectives.
We use communication to influence decision makers, stakeholders and partners to support and implement actions that contribute to the fulfilment of children’s and adolescents’ rights. We communicate with decision-makers and the public to promote new child-friendly policies and redefine social norms and public perceptions.
Transformative change can only happen when there is an open platform for partnership.
Partnering to work towards a strong and healthy community has far-reaching benefits for future generations and businesses, bringing shared value to all involved. This is why we are continuously striving to strengthen strategic partnership with the private sector, public sector, civil society organizations, and other UN agencies.
Partnerships underpin virtually all aspects of UNICEF’s work in Kosovo. Our partnership strategy puts children and young people at the centre, whereas institutions, academia, and the private sector form the triple helix model as a synergistic endeavour to sustain growth and development.
There is a growing potential for private sector partnerships in particular to make long-term investments in the health and well-being of children and mothers, and ultimately create a healthy, educated future workforce.
Our recent alliance with Reiffeisen Bank Kosovo (RBKO) is already showing the wide-ranging impact of private sector partnerships to meet gaps in UNICEF’s equity-focused approach to child survival and development. Together, we have managed to ramp up support for the Ministry of Health’s Home Visiting programme, greatly increasing the number of children receiving integrated & quality services during the first 1,000 days of life. RBKO is now utilizing its assets to help local family health centres in increasing the coverage of the Home Visiting programme, specifically increasing the number of marginalized children being given the recommended visits during their first year of life.
Another partnership with the Kosovo Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Network is proving instrumental in contributing to equitable, inclusive and sustainable development of Kosovo. This alliance stirred significant debate on the role of the private sector to implement and fulfil the SDGs. It has brought private sector organizations closer to the challenges of children and young people in Kosovo and is providing them with the opportunity to co-create solutions with UNICEF that contribute to the prosperity of Kosovo.
Together with the CSR Network, we have also created a mentorship scheme for youth-led social impact projects. This scheme has devised a way to systematically leverage professional mentorship for any young person who wants to create a social venture for the benefit of their communities. This initiative is shaping new ways in which young people can communicate, learn and participate in Kosovo as active citizen, ultimately ensuring that their voices—particularly the most marginalized—are heard and acted upon in decision making.