CET platforma Skopje is a voluntary, non-profit, non-governmental association of citizens with mission to: strengthen civil society on local, national and European level, promote and protect the human rights, perform activities which encourage moral and civic values, strengthen inter-ethnic relations, empower youth in society, advocate for social inclusion of vulnerable groups, promote non-formal education and offer support, education, training and mobility opportunities to young people. CET platforma Skopje is established in January 2016 by young, motivated, competent and experienced youth workers, leaders, activists and experts who are active in the civil sector and youth work from 2008. Furthermore, CET platforma Skopje is the Macedonian branch of CET platform network that has member organisations in Serbia, Croatia, Poland, Montenegro, Slovenia, Kosovo, Italy, Bulgaria, Greece, Lithuania and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The vision of CET platform is to fulfil a broader social interest, to act and achieve objectives in the areas of civil society, democratic order and institutions, civic values, human rights, media, non-formal education and vulnerable categories of citizens in society. We strive to stimulate and sustain the personal, professional and social development of the local youth and to foster their active and responsible participation in educational, social, cultural, political and economic life in the communities they live in.
To achieve the mission and vision, CET platform’s main objectives and areas of work are:
– Development of civil society, democracy and democratic institutions;
– Promotion and protection of human rights, civic values and rights of vulnerable groups of citizens in society;
– Strengthening of interethnic and interreligious relations and contributing to equality and solidarity in society;
– Promotion and protection of media freedoms, rights and standards;
– Promotion of non-formal education among citizens, especially among young people;
– Support of marginalized people and contributing to their social inclusion in society;
– Affirmation of youth in society and stimulating their participation in decision-making;
– Offering assistance to local and state institutions in the creation of responsible public policies;
– Encouraging and promoting the development and knowledge in the field of domestic, regional, European and international relations and cooperation;
– Promotion and development of creativity, innovation, sustainable development and entrepreneurship;
– Promotion of philanthropy, volunteerism and active participation of citizens in the social, political and economic life;
– Capacity building of civil society at the local and international level;
– Establishing cooperation with local and foreign NGOs, foundations, local governments, state institutions and other organisations whose objectives are compatible with the goals of CET platform.
The association fulfils its objectives and tasks through an established working program through the following activities: organising specific program activities; implementation of joint projects and cooperation with local and foreign NGOs, foundations, local governments, state institutions and other organisations; organising conferences, seminars, trainings, exchanges, discussions, public debates, creative workshops, counselling and other public activities and forms of education; publishing manuals, promotional materials and publications; organising voluntary actions to raise awareness on matters of social and public interest, as well as activities encouraging active participation of citizens in decision-making.
CET platform Skopje at the moment has 25 active members and 3 volunteers who belong to different ethnic, religious or gender groups that live in North Macedonia. The members have different backgrounds and experiences, but many of them are active in youth work, non-formal education and grass-roots activism from 2008. Our members have been participants, coordinators or organisers of various local, national and international projects on different topics within different programmes. Most of the members have been volunteers or worked for other non-profit youth organisations in the past and have huge experience in preparing, managing and organising local and international activities. Few members have been EVS volunteers in different countries.
Most of the members have a university diploma and have finished or still studying in various departments of different faculties, such as journalism, language studies, economy, law, diplomacy, mechanical engineering, technical and social work studies. The association is open to all who want to become members, regardless of ethnicity, beliefs, racial, religious or other affiliation. The organisation has also a database of over 200 young people and youth workers who have participated in our or our partner’s activities.
CET platforma Skopje and its members have been active in youth work, non-formal education and grass-roots activism since 2008 either as participants, coordinators or organisers of various local, national and international projects on different topics within different programmes such as: Youth in Action, Europe for Citizens, No Hate Speech Movement and Erasmus+. During these years of our work, we gained a lot of experience, knowledge, skills, practices, tools and techniques on non-formal education, youth work and project management while working with young people from different cultural backgrounds from all around Europe and promoting intercultural dialogue and multiculturalism. We have knowledge and years of experience in project writing, project planning, project implementation and evaluation of local and international projects that we will be happy to share with the other participants of the project.
One of our aims of the organisation is the personal development and intercultural learning of young people, especially those with fewer opportunities. We aim through our work and activities to provide space for intercultural learning and to give opportunities for participants to personally develop during the activities we prepare for them.
Moreover, on a local level, we have applied in the city of Skopje for local projects for social inclusion of marginalized and vulnerable groups, active participation of young people, gender equality and capacity building of youth organisations working in these fields. In December 2018, we were awarded grant from the Agency for Youth and Sports of North Macedonia for the 6-months project “Together for a stronger civil society” that from January to June 2019 through different activities and workshops informed and educated civil organisations and young people about EU funding programmes, process of drafting grant proposals, provided space for networking and promoted volunteerism. With a grant from the Ministry of Economy of North Macedonia, in September 2019 we organise “The days of Tradition”, a cultural manifestation with workshops and events in Kriva Palanka that promote old crafts, traditional food recipes and other cultural traditions of the North-East region of the country. The main aim of the project is to raise tourism and contribute to the economic and rural development of the North-East region.
In May 2020, we will organise a E+ youth exchange “It is all about love” in order to explore the cultural universal of marriage and wedding ceremonies in different countries as a way for young people to appreciate and learn more about different cultures, traditions and religions. The project aims to promote mutual understanding and intercultural learning by allowing youth to discover new cultures and to encourage their active participation in society.
In the last 3 years, we have been very active as a reliable partner on Erasmus+ mobility projects. So far, we have sent over 350 young people and youth workers on more than 90+ projects abroad that were organised by our partners with the support of Erasmus+ programme.
Our working plan for this year envisions broadening of our activities and work on regional and international level, so this project will be perfect opportunity for us to meet, share experiences, knowledge and practices as well as concluding valuable partnerships with various European youth organisation who are working in our fields of work. Furthermore, we are applying for projects within the Erasmus+ Programme, but we need to establish more sustainable and good partnerships with organisations who share our values. On the other hand, we recognized that our organisation has the need to furthermore develop the capacity to work in the field addressed by the project as well as the need of our participants to develop their competences and get new tools and contacts that can help them in their youth work in the field. Therefore, we can contribute a lot for the project with our previous experience, knowledge and enthusiasm, but in the same time gain even more on organisational and personnel level by participating in it.
CET platforma Skopje besides preparing and sending participants on the project will actively take part in all the phases of the project and will make sure that the competences and experiences that our representatives will get during the mobility activity will properly transmit it to our other members and other young people and stakeholders that the organisation is working with. Our organisation will be part of the dissemination of the project results and it will try to provide the best possible visibility of the project by spreading the information about the project and its outcomes with our members, our partnership network, via our mailing list, local media and social networks. After the activity, we will discuss any possibilities for organising follow-up activities that will be run by the participants of the project with our support.
The people who were involved in this application and who will take part in all phases of the project are the president of CET platforma Skopje, the programme coordinator and projects manager. All of them are experienced and competent youth workers and activists who have huge experience in working and participating in local and international projects from 2008. All of us combined, we have participated and worked as trainers, facilitators, support staff, project managers or been involved in organising of more than 150 local and international projects that involved young people, high school and university students, practitioners of youth work, activists, members of political parties and others on various subjects such as: human rights, democracy, youth participation, social inclusion, intercultural dialogue, cultural diversity, youth (un)employment youth entrepreneurship, citizenship in general and European citizenship in particular, communication, media, usage of ICT, campaigning, gender issues, sustainable and rural development etc. Other people that are involved in this application are the members of CET platform, participants of the project, who are active young people from our local community, volunteers, activists and youth workers who have a need and motivation to develop their competences on the topics of the project, learn about other cultures, meet peers from around Europe, extend their professional and personal contacts and gain new experiences, practices and tools for youth work and non-formal education.
Our members have experience working on projects supported by the local municipalities, city of Skopje and the government of North Macedonia, but mostly we have experience participating and working on projects supported by the European Commission and the European Youth Foundation, in programmes such as Youth in Action, Erasmus+ and Europe for Citizens.
The president of CET platforma Skopje, Bojan Kocevski, is a youth worker, project manager, activist and trainer that is involved in youth work and non-formal education from 2008. Bojan has B.A. in journalism and years of experience working in radio, TV and online media. Bojan has extensive knowledge of civil society work, working with young people, possess strong leadership and managerial skills and have attended, worked as trainer/facilitator or managed more than 90 local and international projects with young people from different cultural backgrounds from all around Europe. During the last years, Bojan has worked with many different NGO’s and youth organisations from around Europe and as a freelance trainer which resulted with him being appointed in 2015 as a network coordinator of CET Europe network. For this particular project, he will be responsible for establishing the partnership, signing the partnerships documents, communicating with the applicant and other partner organisations and supervising the work of the programme coordinator and projects manager.
Stefan Rasikj is CET platforma Skopje’s programme coordinator. He is involved with youth organisations and youth projects from 2008 and have participated, worked and helped organise more than 35 local and international projects. Stefan has B.Sc. in mechanical engineering, but he is involved in youth work, volunteering and grass-root activism for the last 10 years. Stefan had previously worked for another NGO from Skopje as projects manager and is one of the founders of CET platforma Skopje. Stefan’s responsibilities for this project will be as a contact person for communication with the applicant and other partner organisations and as coordinator of any possible follow-up activities that will be organised by participants of the project.
Leonarda Trajkovska is the project manager and coordinator of volunteers in the organisation since March 2018. Before that she has been our volunteer and participant in many projects. Right now, she is working on her Bachelor thesis in physiotherapy. During her education she has been involved in volunteer work with youth and marginalized groups, non-formal education and has been part of several NGO’s. Leonarda’s main responsibilities are: selection of participants and communication with them before and after the project, preparatory and evaluation meetings, communication with partner organisations and establishing new partnerships. Leonarda has coordinated the selection, preparatory meetings and communication with more than 200 young people and youth workers who participated in more than 50 international projects in different countries.
The president, programme coordinator, projects manager and selected participants for the project will all be responsible for ensuring visibility of the project, dissemination of the project results and possibly organising local follow-up activities.