Kosovo Trustbuilding Platform
New Social Initiative
Motto: Inspire dynamic communities. New Social Initiative (NSI) is an independent think and do tank from North Mitrovica founded on the idea to inspire dynamic communities in Kosovo. Our mission is to assist institutions in utilizing community strengths and delivering evidence based decision making in order to resolve major social and community challenges. Our work aims to: - Empower public institutions in Kosovo to adopt principles of good governance and increase citizen participation in decision making; - Contribute to democratization processes and constructive inter-ethnic relations through fostering and promoting positive inter-community communication and cooperation. - Facilitate shared discourse and joint vision on major social. challenges - Secure a more prosperous political, social, legal, economic, and environmental development in the region. Our vision is a prosperous society based on shared community values and strong institutions that respect rights of each and every citizen.
United Nations Mission in Kosovo
The mandate of the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) was established by the Security Council in its resolution 1244 (1999). The Mission is mandated to help ensure conditions for a peaceful and normal life for all inhabitants of Kosovo and advance regional stability in the Western Balkans.
Fundación Ciudadanía Inteligente
Latin American NGO that develops innovative technologies and methodologies to improve democracies. With over 10 years of experience, we work developing projects that empower citizens and upturn power dynamics.
Jovana Radosavljević is a co-founder and Executive Director of the New Social Initiative, a CSO based in North Mitrovica (Kosovo). She is a member of the Preparatory Team for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in Kosovo. More recently, Jovana has worked as a Consultant for the World Bank Kosovo Office, Royal Norwegian Embassy in Pristina, and Swisspeace. She has worked for the EU election observation missions, deployed to Kosovo to observe municipal and legislative elections in the aftermath of the signing of the Brussels Agreement. Jovana is an alumnus of the USAID’s Transformational Leadership Scholarship and Partnership Program and holds an MA degree in International Studies from Joseph Korbel School of International Studies, University of Denver, with specializations in conflict resolution and international development, as well as a BA degree from the Faculty of Political Science, University of Belgrade.
Zana Hodxa Krasniqi
Zana Hodxa Krasniqi
Zana Hoxha Krasniqi (born in 1981) is a professional Theater Director from Kosovo and the founder and Executive Director of Artpolis - a Kosovo-based NGO that promotes arts and diversity through social dialogue and community building. She has directed around 20 Theater performances that were produced and presented in the biggest Theaters in Kosovo and the Balkan region (Albania, Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia, Croatia) and has presented her works as an artist/activist/trainer elsewhere in the USA, Europe, Middle East and North Africa. She was the Head of the Theater Department of SKENA UP Festival between 2004-2011, Artistic Director of Gjakova/Djakovica Professional Theater between 2011-2014 and she is the Founder and Artistic Director of the biggest festival of female artists and activists - FEMART. Zana is IVLP Alumni (The International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) is the U.S. Department of State’s premier professional exchange program) and the award-winning director, recognized for her work in Kosovo and in the region. As an artist and activist, she uses Theater to advocate for social issues that focus on awareness-raising on Gender Based Violence, Human Rights and diversity. She was a Board member of Kosovo National Theater; Kosovo Women’s Network, CIVIKOS Platform and is a Senior Trainer on Forum Theater and Building resilience of female activists.
Shpend Emini has been the Executive Director of Democracy for Development Institute (D4D) in Kosovo since 2016. He has more than 18 years of experience, out of which 9 years in nonprofit sector, in program management and development, reconciliation, community development and election processes. Prior to joining Democracy for Development in 2012, he had worked for the Project on Ethnic Relations (PER), US-based organization focused on improving interethnic relations in the Western Balkans. His international experience includes three years of work for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) in Hungary as the Regional Program Coordinator for Central Europe and Southern Caucasus. He also worked for IFRC in Kosovo during the period 1999-2007. During the period 2014-2017 he served as a member of the Council for Cooperation between the Government and Civil Society in Kosovo, representing civil society, and, since 2017, he has been a member of the Balkans in Europe Policy Advisory Group (BiEPAG). Shpend holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and an MA degree in Management. He speaks Albanian, English, Turkish and Serbian.
Veljko Samardzic, was born in 1975 in Pec. He is an economist by education. He was the Deputy Director General of the graphic company "Borba" and the Commercial Director of the "Official Gazette" from Belgrade in the period in which this company was twice proclaimed the publisher of the year at the Belgrade Book Fair. Since 2011, he has been working in Pristina, primarily as an Advisor to the Vice-President of the Kosovo Assembly from the ranks of the Serbian community, and later as an Advisor to the Office of the Language Commissioner. He participated in the drafting of the Strategy for the Protection and Promotion of Linguistic Rights in Kosovo, which was proposed to the Government of Kosovo for adoption. He publishes scientific papers in journals, and occasionally writes on the political situation in Kosovo, for the daily "Danas" and portal "Kossev". He is a lecturer at the Higher Vocational School for Entrepreneurship in Belgrade on the subject of Tax Policy. He is also the President of an NGO "Center for Social Initiatives". He led the team of this organization, who designed and implemented the project "VocUp" - a multimedia platform for learning Serbian and Albanian languages. This platform, developed in cooperation with the IOM, the Embassy of Great Britain and UNMIK, brings together Albanian and Serbian linguists in a joint work on the creation of the Albanian - Serbian and Serbian - Albanian language. Additionally, he works on the coordination of the team for digitizing the online dictionary „Small dictionary" in cooperation with the NCNM / OSCE for the municipalities of Presevo, Bujanovac and Medvedja. He is married and father of one child.
Mimoza Gavrani, from Pristina, is a Fellow at the Central European University-CEU in Budapest, Hungary, and she also holds a BA in Psychology, obtained in Pristina, Kosovo. She has more than 12 years of experience in civil society activism developments, and she has been actively involved in processes of government-initiated policies towards integration of minority communities in Kosovo. Following her professional path, she was involved in different academic approaches of her interest and combined her experiences from different levels by bridging them back to her country, especially supporting youngsters and women in raising their voices within present decision-making processes by setting different agendas. Ms. Gavrani believes in diversity as a concept of value, so, in 2017, she created and launched her own form of a TV program named “Mimoza” which is weekly broadcasted on the national television of Kosovo - RTK, and it presents the idea of applying media as a tool for raising awareness on the topics of social impact in Kosovo. This is a unique program which was initiated, launched and managed by a minority female in the Balkan region. With all the above-mentioned profile elements, as a unique figure, Ms. Gavrani aims to pave the way for future women and show the value of professionalism that will play an essential role in framing further developments and upgrading the gender equality potential in the Balkan region.
Sanja Sovrlic was born on November 30, 1983. She finished elementary and secondary school in Leposavic and studied at the University of Pristina with a temporary location in Kosovska Mitrovica, where she graduated from the Department of Sociology. She is currently the Editor of the Black and White World online platform (www.crnobelisvet.com). She has been engaged in the field of journalism since 2011, working on the development of various types of media content (short TV reports, articles, columns, documentaries and broadcast debates, info program, news, etc.). She began her career in journalism at RTV Mir in Leposavic, where she performed the duties of a journalist, presenter and, later, editor of the information and documentary program. During her journalistic career, she collaborated with numerous media by publishing stories with a focus on topics related to Kosovo. She published her works on Prishtina Insight, Balkan Insight, Kosovo 2.0, Danas, Vreme, Vojvodina Autonomy, New Perspektiva. She continued her professional advancement through various non-formal education programs and participation in professional seminars and conferences in the Balkan region and abroad, such as: BIRN Summer School of Investigative Journalism where, together with colleagues from Belgrade and Pristina, she won the first prize for the proposal of a research story; Civil Society in the EU Integration Process - training for executive managers organized by the KSCF; Edward R. Murrow program for journalists in the United States; Regional School for Analysts and Investigative Journalists in Croatia. She is also the author of several documentary shows including the Big Band film about a multiethnic orchestra that had existed in Kosovo before the war.
Hiljmnijeta Apuk, the winner of the prestigious United Nations Prize in the Field of Human Rights for 2013. The Prize has been awarded once every five years since 1968. Among the previous laureates were Amnesty International, Jimmy Carter, Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela, Eleanor Roosevelt, Benazir Buto… The Prize is not only an opportunity to give public recognition to the achievements of the recipients themselves, but also to send a clear message to human rights defenders all over the world that the international community supports and is grateful for their tireless efforts to promote human rights for all. Ms. Apuk has been an activist for the rights of the persons with disabilities for over 30 years, both domestically and internationally. She is the founding Director of the Little People of Kosovo organization and acts as a National Coordinator of an awareness campaign for employment possibilities of persons with disabilities. Ms. Apuk is also an artist, working to promote authentic culture of persons with disabilities through her artwork. Ms. Apuk was a member of the Ad Hoc Committee of the UN General Assembly on drafting of the Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Ms. Hiljmnijeta Apuk has two degrees, obtained simultaneously, MA in Economy and MA in Law studies.
Sanja Vuković, born Popović, a Class Teacher and a Proofreader for the Serbian language. Born in Pristina, from 2010 she has been living and working in the municipality of Klokot, as a returnee to Kosovo. Since 2010, she has been active in various civil society organizations, primarily on issues related to human, non-majority rights in Kosovo and the issues of the right to use a language. From 2014 to 2018 she was hired as Proofreader for Serbian language in the Office of the Language Commissioner in the Government of Kosovo, and in the period from 2016 to 2018, she was the Chair of the Working Group on Language Issues in the Advisory Council for Communities at the Office of the President of Kosovo. Since 2017, she has been engaged in the NGO "Network for Civil Activism" on issues related to the right to the language use, and since 2018 she has been a Class Teacher in the Serbian language education system.
Little People of Kosovo
NGO Little People of Kosovo is a multiethnic nonprofit organization and a network of national and international organizations, or assemblies, of persons with disabilities, as well as minorities, established to promote the implementation of the Anti-Discrimination Law and the new Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, as well as the protection of human rights and development. Little People of Kosovo has been accredited to participate in the work of the Ad Hoc Committee of the UN's General Assembly on drafting the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The organization was established in 2002 and it aims to promote the rights and dignity of every human being. It promotes the full enjoyment of all human rights, fundamental freedoms, people’s dignity and participation as equal members of a society. It promotes positive attitudes towards minorities and persons with disabilities and seeks to protect them from discrimination, violence and abuse; it promotes right for life, freedom of expression and opinion, access to information, aims to make the public more sensitive toward minorities and persons with disabilities in the Kosovo society. One of the goals of the Little People of Kosovo is the development of an authentic culture of persons with disabilities with the aim of human rights advancement and fostering young talents among persons with disabilities.
Democracy for Development (D4D)
The Democracy for Development (D4D) Institute was established in April 2010 by a group of analysts who increasingly worried that the state-building exercise had neglected democracy. D4D seeks to contribute to Kosovo’s state consolidation through a set of institutional programs that promote democracy as the ultimate principle and practice. D4D’s vision is to promote an active and educated citizenry that both fully participates in the public space and utilises the public arena of representation and decision-making to deliberate and build consensus over smart, efficient, and sustainable resource allocation as well as equitable development. To make headway, D4D first offers its research findings to interested stakeholders, which is followed by a paper with recommendations, wider national dialogue, and advocacy with authorities, and pressure through the media. The main program pillars of D4D are: 1)Policy Analysis & Research 2)Elections & Political Parties 3)Governance & Public Interest 4)Dialogue & Regional Cooperation
Radio Television “Mir” was established on November 25, 2000; firstly as a Radio and then Television too. Until May 13, 2003 RTV “Mir” functioned in rented space and then in its own facility. Transmitting network was developed from one transmitter at Desetak location, to five transmitters in Kopaonik, Kom, Zvecan i Susica (Gracanica). Present coverage of the southern Serbia (Raska area and villages in the suburb of Novi Pazar municipality, Kosovo north (Leposavic municipality), Zvecan and Mitrovica), along the Mitrovica-Pristina road (villages of Priluzje, Plemetina, etc.) and central Kosovo (Gracanica, Laplje Selo, Caglavica, etc.) Work of this media house where supported at the very beginning by USAID and OSCE since when it functions completely independently as apsolutely self-sustainable station. This media does not enjoy any donations and functions completely without political influence from any side in the market. RTV “MIR” is registered as a Private enterprise in unlimited responsibility and it holds all licenses and certificates needed for functioning in its area of responsibility in accordance with the Regulation of the International and local administration in Kosovo. Basic idea was to meet the needs for establishing Radio and Television station in this area in the postconflict period of dismantling the Milosevic totalitarian regime, that remained in Serbia and had great influence on the Serb community after committed violence over the Albanian population. The idea was to say the truth about events and people who in the period of 1989-1999 caused conflicts and violence. Enthusiasm that was expressed at the very beginning (year 2000) was helped by then the SRSG Kushner, OSCE HoM Aambassador Dan Everts, US Office in Pristina (USAID), KFOR, etc. Following the positive results, that enthusiasm has grown in professionalism and biggest result to which RTV “Mir” contributed is a victory over Milosevic regime in Leposavic even before the same thing happened in Serbia on October 5. Following this, our work focused on informations and educational/cultural program with the support to cultural, entertaining, sport, scientific and program for children in Kosovo and wider, which has as a result creation of an environment with the incredible number of newly established sport clubs in different sport areas and their development mostly influenced by RTV Mir who forced municipality authorities to accept supporting them in this sense. Trips and competitions where organized in different parts of Europe and communication and opening of youth towards world trends. The influence of the program conception of our Television which became the Youth, sport and culture Television largely contributed to creation and development of many new cultural happenings, especially in Leposavic but also in Mitrovica, Zvecan and central Kosovo, Strpce and Gnjilane. Such happenings are: Film festival, Exibition of the cultural/artistic associations, Rok Fest, Acords of Lesak, etc. In informative program there are no limits and broadcasted are news first of all from Kosovo (all Albanian and Serbian agencies) without any cencorship and with respect for the journalistic ethics and codes forseen by the rules. RTV Mir current signal covers the following areas: Northern Kosovo (Mitrovica, Leposavic, Zvecan, Zubin Potok ...); The central Kosovo (Gracanica, neighboring Serb village of Caglavica, Laplje Selo, Lipljan ...); Southern Serbia (Raska municipality, municipality Trstenik, near Krusevac, part of the town of Krusevac, Vrnjacka Banja Ribarska Banja ...) and municipality Strpce in south Kosovo
Verka Jovanovic has extensive experience working in international settings in the fields of human rights, peacebuilding and conflict transformation. Apart from other positions, she coordinated and participated in Demostat Center’s Serbia-wide research within the project “Strengthening the protection of national minorities in Serbia” under the joint European Union/Council of Europe Horizontal Facility (2018-2019), managed the implementation of multiethnic youth capacity building projects at the Forum for Ethnic Relations in Central and South Serbia (2017-2018) and coordinated National Demoratic Institute’s advocacy activities in North Kosovo (2013-2015). From 2013 to 2017, she worked as part of the teams of the Election Observation Mission of the European Union during each election cycle in Kosovo. She is a co-author of several publications, including the report on Education in the process of normalization of relations between Belgrade and Pristina, published by InTER and the National Convention on the EU in April, 2019, as well as of six consecutive monitoring reports on the Internal Dialogue on Kosovo, published by the Forum for Ethnic Relations in 2017/18.Verka is active in several local/regional CSOs, within which she writes analyses, reports and articles on local issues, but also performs translation and proofreading. She holds an M.A. degree in International Peace and Conflict Resolution with a concentration in Human Rights, obtained at American University in Washington D.C. (2015-2017), as well as a B.A. degree in English Language and Literature, from the University of Pristina in North Mitrovica (2010-2014).
Donika Marku completed her bachelor’s degree in International Relations at the American College of Thessaloniki in Greece and the Open University in United Kingdom, for which she was awarded financial aid and a merit-based scholarship. During her studies in Greece, she was the Vice President for Academic Affairs of Student Government Association and an Intern at Michael and Kitty Dukakis Center for Public and Humanitarian Service. Donika became part of KCSS internship program in 2015, where she worked on a policy paper regarding “Job Security in Civil Society Organizations in Kosovo: Implementation of Labour Legislation”. She has also been engaged in other NGOs, such as TOKA and Ecopana. In September 2017, Donika joined KCSS's team as a Research Assistant/Project Officer. Her research interests include public perceptions, public safety, organized crime, Kosovo-Serbia dialogue, integrity in the security sector, Kosovo’s foreign policy and peacekeeping missions.
Milica Radovanović, a Journalist of the KoSSev portal from Kosovska Mitrovica. In the focus of her interest is chatting with institutions and seeking meaning in meaninglessness
Crno beli svet is a non-governmental organization founded in 2017 with the aim of promoting and developing independent and investigative journalism in the Serbian language in Kosovo. Members of the organization are journalists and researchers with years of experience in the media and the non-governmental sector. Individual members of the organization have experience in article writing, documentary filmmaking, research, media education training, media monitoring, and similar activities related to the development of independent journalism.