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Kosovo
Caritas Kosova

Caritas Kosova was founded in 1992 to respond to the widespread systemic poverty levels plaguing Kosovo, among the highest in Europe. Caritas Kosova intervention distributed humanitarian aid to the most vulnerable and marginalised people in society. Since 1999, Caritas Kosova has been able to strengthen their organisational structure through the support of the Caritas members and the creation of a parish Caritas groups capacity building programme. Caritas Kosova programmes and activities are supported by the European Commission, operating all over the region. Acting as a “voice of the voiceless” and protector of human dignity, Cartias Kosova is committed to its four mandates: provide emergency relief and sustainable rehabilitation, social and health assistance, sustainable development and advocacy and lobby.

Caritas Kosova emergency relief and sustainable rehabilitation sector provides emergency aid in cases of natural or man-made disaster, such as floods, landslides, extreme cold and conflict. Their interventions focus on the basic needs of victims, vulnerable people and communities with basic rehabilitation material. In 2013, their assistance provided food, clothing and hygienic items to more than 200 families in Klina. During the winter, Caritas Kosova winter assistance programme provides warm clothing, stoves and fuel to 200 families living in rural villages to survive the extreme cold. Caritas Kosova established 3 receiving centres in the poorest regions of the country to render social assistance to families and individuals living in extreme poverty, providing monthly food provisions and hygiene packages.

Caritas Kosova Sustainable Development Sector develops programmes to assist victims of human trafficking in Kosovo. The programme provides shelter to 60 victims and incorporates capacity building to initiate the process of social integration.

Caritas Kosova programmes strengthens economic stability through micro credits to agricultural business ideas, lobbies at the national and regional level to promote peace and reconciliation among Kosovo’s citizens from different ethnic and religious backgrounds and a home care programme to provide medicine, food and housekeeping to elderly people in need.

Caritas Kosova headquarters is based in Ferizaj and its activities are coordinated by a staff of 153 employees and over 400 volunteers in 5 regional offices in Pristina, Prizren, Gjilan, Klina, Mitrovica and Leposavic and 7 project offices. Caritas Kosova is currently cooperating with 13 active parish structures out of the 24 parish structures of the diocese of Kosova which are under the hierarchy of four deaneries. Despite the significant growth witnessed, Caritas Kosova plans to expand their operational structure, in particular efforts to strengthen the volunteer network and to intensify collaboration with parish priests.

As a member of the 164 members of Caritas Internationalis Confederation, Caritas Kosova functioning is supported by the financial contributions and technical assistance of the Caritas organisations: mainly Caritas Germany, Caritas Switzerland, Caritas Italy, Caritas Spain, Caritas Belgium, Catholic Relief Services and Caritas France.

Caritas Updates from Kosovo