CAF has implemented comprehensive development projects in disadvantaged rural and urban communities of Albania in the framework of local, national and regional programs, aiming at the promotion of child rights and anti-discrimination, enhancement of active child and yout participation in the school, family and community life; improvement of school leadership and teaching quality, creation of inclusive classrooms, and of a friendly and enabling school environment; encouragement of parent and community involvement in the school improvement process and strengthening of School-Family-Community Partnerships; development of more democratic and inclusive schools and a better quality, more equitable and inclusive education system, hence a more democratic and inclusive society.
“Promoting Active Student Participation in a Friendly and Enabling School Environment” is a two-year project that aimed to promote active student participation in a friendly and enabling school environment. The project was implemented in four primary and secondary schools of Elbasan district through a cooperation with MTO – Poland and with the financial support of Citizens for Engaged Communities (CEC-USA).
The main objectives of the project were: 1.To raise awareness among all the stakeholders on the project (its goal and objectives) and the importance of their active involvement in the whole process, 2.To improve school administrators’ (school principals and vice-principals) communication, cooperation, leadership and management skills, 3.To improve teachers’ communication and cooperation with students and among them, and the teaching methods that encourage students’ active participation, motivation and cooperation, 4.To encourage active student participation through development of Public Achievement initiatives and enhancement of Student Government’s role and capacity.
"Regional Support for Inclusive Education”- Joint EU/CoE Project - Support to Pilot Schools for Implementing Inclusive Education Policies and Practices.
This project was implemented through a strong partnership with Ministry of Education in all the regions, REDs and respective schools. It aimed to enhance social inclusion and social cohesion in the region by promoting inclusive education and training in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Montenegro, Serbia, North Macedonia and Kosovo.
NEPC- Network of Education Policy Centers and its partners: Children are the Future / Fëmijët Janë e Ardhmja”- Albania, proMente - Bosnia and Herzegovina, Step by Step - Bosnia and Herzegovina, Forum for freedom in Education – Croatia, Kosova Education Center – Kosovo, Macedonian Civic Education Center – Macedonia, Forum MNE – Montenegro, and Center for Education Policy – Serbia were selected by Council of Europe to be the Platform for supporting schools in implementing inclusive policies and practices within the “Regional Support for Inclusive Education” Project.
As a national partner organization, in cooperation with NEPC and other partner organizations, we helped the pilot schools in developing both, school projects for the CoE grant as well as School Development Plans. The project promoted the concept of inclusive education as a reform principle that respects and caters for diversity among all learners, with a specific focus on those who are at a high risk of marginalization and exclusion.
The main project activities were focused on 49 pilot schools in the region (7 per beneficiary Country). The 7 schools in Albania were located in Bajram Curri, Shkodra, Vlora; Durrës, Korça, Pogradec and Tirana regions.
“Mobilizing Community Joint Action: for Citizenship Against Poverty”- within the “Grassroots Europe for Local Wellbeing” Initiative: This is a comprehensive international partnership project that was implemented with the financial support of EU and OSI/OSF-Budapest through a partnership of 8 national partner organizations from 8 European countries: Hungary, Germany, Italy, Romania, Austria, Albania, Croatia and Latvia. CAF was the Albanian national partner that ensured an active involvement and empowerment of 10 other Albanian education grassroots organizations from Durres, Elbasan, Librazhd and Tirana Districts. This project aimed to support European community-based educational grassroots organizations that were able to mobilize their communities and public opinion around issues of marginalization in education and help the most vulnerable groups of society. By strengthening the mediating role of grassroots organisations in a participatory process, the project aimed to empower citizens to engage in dialogue with the local stakeholders and work towards cross-sectorial, holistic community approaches that can be shared and adapted to various European contexts.
Various local and national stakeholder meetings on marginalization in education with education authorities, school administrators, teachers, students, parents, local government, University, grassroots organizations and Civil Society representatives provided valuable messages, suggestions and recommendations for national and international policy makers. In addition, implementation of mini-partnership projects in 9 primary and secondary schools and communities in Durres, Fier and Elbasan regions had a very positive impact on the increase of awareness and understanding of the importance of inclusive education to the development of a more inclusive and democratic society.
“Parents and Community, Active Partners in the Improvement of Education Quality”: Based on its mission, main goal and objectives for an inclusive education and a strong school-family-community cooperation as well as on the new law on pre-university education, this project designed by CAF (FJA) in consultation with OSFA aimed at the enhancement of the role of parents in the school life and especially in the decision-making process. This was achieved through: a community based advocacy and awareness-raising campaign; identification and mentoring of the most active persons who are highly committed to the strengthening of parents' and other community members' voice and role in education; provision of support and monitoring of a democratic election process of Parents Councils, as the main source of parent representation in other inner school decision-making structures.
The project was implemented in 9 primary and secondary schools of Elbasani, Librazhd, Korca and Mirdita Districts.
“School-Family-Community Partnership, a Key Element of Success in Education” – This is a two-year project that was successfully implemented by CAF with the financial support of Open Society Foundation in Albania (OSFA) in two primary and secondary schools of Polis village in the Librazhd District and Rubik in the Mirdita District during July 2011 – June 2013. It aimed at the establishment and strengthening of School-Family-Community Partnership and the establishment of a comprehensive partnership Model and successful practices of parent and community involvement that can be replicated and further developed in other schools at local, district and national level.
“Promoting Volunteering Among Youth” - This is an international project that was successfully implemented by CAF in 2012 with the financial support of EACEA within the Youth in Action Program. It aimed at raising awareness and deepening understanding among youth from 10 EU and SEE countries of the values and importance of volunteering to the enrichment of their personal, social and professional skills and competencies, as well as to the development of the whole community. It also aimed at the promotion of intercultural learning as well as understanding of and respect for cultural diversity.
All together against violence in schools and families” is another project that was implemented with the financial support of Austrian Development Cooperation in three primary and secondary schools of Albania in 2011. The project aimed at fostering respect for children, their rights and dignity among teachers, school administrators, parents and children themselves and improving relationships and co-operation among them.
Development of PTAs (Parent Teacher Associations) and Public Achievement” - is a project that was implemented in 10 primary and secondary schools of Tirana, Elbasan and Librazhd district through a close cooperation with the Polish Organization MTO with the financial support of Citizens for Engaged Communities (CEC) and Charles Merril. CAF has been supporting each PTA and school-based Public Achievement Group with the designing and implementation of various projects aiming at a more welcoming, friendly, cooperative and inclusive school environment.