PRIDE for LGBT in Albania – Promoting Rights, Inclusiveness, Dignity and Equality for LGBT in Albania (PRIDE)
The overall goal of PRIDE is to strengthen the role of LGBT organisations and activists in promoting the acceptance, inclusion and protection of the LGBT minority in both rural and urban Albania. The project has a particular focus on protecting at-risk, marginalised LGBT youth and to promote respect for their fundamental rights.
PRIDE began on 15 February 2018 and will last 24 months. The project is implemented jointly by IREX Europe and its partners: Alliance Against LGBT Discrimination (Aleanca LGBT) and Tebashkuar Pro Kauzës LGBT (Pro LGBT). In addition, the project will work together with the Streha Shelter as well as with the regional organisation ERA. The project is supported by the European Union.
“Although Albania has the legal provisions in place that protect LGBTI people from discrimination and ban hate speech in all fields […] experience shows that inequality and failure to understand the human rights of LGBTI people prevails in society” – Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth, “National Action Plan on LGBTI People in the Republic of Albania, 2016-2020”, March 2016.
From 2010, and in light of the EU accession process started in 2014, the Government of Albania has taken actions to adopt legislative changes in favour of the protection of LGBT rights. It has thus made significant progress at the legal and policy level in the protection and inclusion of the LGBT community. However, despite the notable changes on paper, in reality, the vast majority of LGBT people continue to hide their sexual orientation and are continuously subject to human rights violations, stigma and discrimination, mainly under the form of harassment in school, denial of access to reproductive means and discrimination in health care institutions, discrimination in the work-place, and in public local offices.
In this context, LGBT organisations such as Aleanca, ProLGBT and the Streha Shelter, have been crucial in providing support and access to basic services for LGBT individuals; raising awareness on LGBT rights; and in training media, public administration, teachers, police officers on anti-discrimination and respect for LGBT rights. Thanks to the Streha Shelter, runaway and homeless LGBT youth, often victims of domestic violence now have a safe place to stay. Aleanca, ProLGBT and Streha have been driving forces behind the recent legislative modifications which are contributing to social change in Tirana and regions.
By supporting and strengthening the three LGBT organisations and thanks to strategic and impactful activities, this project primarily proposes a grassroots approach where concrete actions promote increased access to rights and services for the LGBT community as well as improve the image and acceptance of LGBT rights in Albania.
Objective 1 – To strengthen the capacity of LGBT organisations and increase their ability to support their constituencies and improve the acceptance, inclusion and protection of the LGBT community among the general population in Tirana and Albania’s regions.
Objective 2 – To increase access to protection and counselling support, as well as access to employment opportunities for the LGBT community, with a special focus on ensuring access to basic services for at-risk young LGBT individuals from Tirana and the regions.
Objective 3 – To promote a more positive image of the LGBT community and improve their acceptance by the general population in Tirana and the regions, both through media campaigns and offline activities
EXPECTED RESULTS AND ACTIVITIES:
Outcome 1 – LGBT organisations have improved their management capacity, and have acquired new skills and knowledge to implement actions improving the acceptance, inclusion and protection of the LGBT community in Tirana and the regions:
- Activity 1.1: Capacity building strategy development for Aleanca LGBT, PRoLGBT and the Streha Shelter
- Activity 1.2: In house capacity building trainings for Aleanca LGBT, PRoLGBT and the Streha Shelter
Outcome 2 – The LGBT community in Albania, especially at-risk LGBT youth, are benefiting from increased and improved counselling, protection and access to employment support inside and outside of Tirana, namely via assistance through the Aleanca Community Centre and the Streha Shelter
- Activity 2.1- Service provision support for 200 LGBT individuals through Aleanca community centre:
- Activity 2.2 – Support for 12 at-risk homeless LGBT youth through the ‘Streha’ Shelter:
Outcome 3 – The image of the LGBT community in Tirana and the regions has improved through positive role model campaigns and support for awareness raising to LGBT activists disseminated by Albanian media
- Activity 3.1- Awareness raising grants for activists from regions
- Activity 3.2 – Training on Human Rights and Ethics for local media practitioner from regions
- Activity 3.3: Positive role model campaign