Western Balkans Youth Lab On Mental Health: Kicks off in Albania

As part of the Western Balkans Youth Laboratory project, organized by the Regional Cooperation Council, KOMS representatives visited Tirana on December on 9th and 10th. In the coming period, within this project and within the new cycle of topics, the focus will be on mental health.

Representatives of the youth umbrella organizations of the six Western Balkan economies, policy makers and representatives of the European Commission gathered in Albania to discuss the topic of mental health, which ranked second after unemployment according to a study by the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) named Balkan Barometer. In the introduction, it was said that there is a need to bridge the gap between the needs of young people when it comes to health and the available institutional answers.

Over the course of two days, participants discussed mental health issues and made 13 recommendations at the regional level that envisage how to raise mental health awareness, support measures and convey the importance of youth mental health prevention. The recommendations were supported by all members of the Regional Expert Group from each of the region’s six economies.

Together with RCC Secretary General, Majlinda Bregu, closing remarks were delivered by the Deputy Minister of Health and Social Protection Denada Seferi, Director of WHO Division for Country Health Policies and Health Systems Dr. Natasha Azzopardi Muscat, Adviser for Human Capital Development, European Commission, Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations, Adrienn Kiraly, Young European Ambassador (YEA), Kosovo*,  Egzona Bexheti and Secretary General of the National Youth Council of Serbia Miljana Pejic

Western Balkans Youth Policy Lab project is a three-year project supported by the European Union and organized by the Regional Cooperation Council, which seeks to create a long-term structured regional dialogue between youth organizations and national administrations focused on joint policy making to increase youth participation in decision-making. , improve the overall socio-economic environment and mobility of young people. in the economies of the Western Balkans through different types of activities.