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Kosovo Youth Contribute to Their Communities During the Pandemic

Published 07/10/2020 by Global Communities


Read original article on USAID website

As a long-time youth activist, Drita jumped at the chance to join the Emergency Response (ER) Team in her community.  She has been actively involved in USAID’s Up to Youth activity as a Youth Advisory Board member, and understands how vital it is to volunteer in her community.  Thus, she did not hesitate in joining local representatives from the police, the municipal directorates of education, public administration, and health, nonprofits and businesses, and the Red Cross to ensure the citizens of Vushtrri/Vučitrn remain safe during the pandemic.

As part of the ER team, Drita and other volunteers are responsible for checking that supermarkets have proper signs clearly explaining the distance to be maintained by people shopping there, or ensuring that the taxi drivers are not carrying more than one person in their vehicles, in order to limit contact and avoid spreading the disease.  “The first week of the lockdown was out of control, people were buying food, crowds in supermarkets, and many of them did not keep the distance nor masks.  Now things look under control,” explains Drita.

Drita works with her colleagues on the ER team to assess the situation and coordinate response, and reviewing and verifying lists of those that need assistance, whether it be families on social assistance or those who have lost their jobs because of the pandemic.  “We are delivering food door to door, making sure people who live in remote villages, especially the elderly who do not own private transportation, are not going hungry.”

In the face of an unprecedented crisis, Kosovo youth like Drita understand how vital it is to help and support their communities.  USAID’s Up to Youth activity focuses on mobilizing and engaging youth in meaningful ways to effect positive change in their communities.  As part of the Youth Advisory Board, Drita and other members represent the voices of youth in the activity and gain valuable experience to lead the Kosovo of the future, while creating positive change in individual lives, their municipality and their country.