Survivors of gender-based violence in northern Kosovo can finally find safe refuge close to home.
After two years of efforts, Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General Christopher Coleman joined Zubin Potok Mayor Srđan Vulović and North Mitrovica Principal Executive Officer Adrijana Hodžić on June 29 to mark the opening of the first regional shelter for survivors of gender-based violence for residents of Leposavić/Leposaviq, North Mitrovica, Zubin Potok and Zvečan/Zveçan municipalities.
“It’s extraordinarily important that women who have been abused are protected, economically empowered, obtain the services and therapy that they need to exercise their rights and be the full contributors to society that they deserve to be,” DSRSG Coleman said. He also emphasised that supporting institutions to carry out these services was a benefit not just for women, but for society.
Until now, the lack of a functional shelter was the major obstacle preventing the four northern municipalities from providing adequate support to survivors of gender-based violence. Following the 2018 United Nations Kosovo Trust-building Forum, grassroots actors called on local institutions to invest greater efforts in addressing gender-based violence and supporting survivors.
This project is supported by the United Nations Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) and is implemented by the New Social Initiative. Expressed opinions represent the authors’ views and do not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations, UNMIK or New Social Initiative.