CASE STUDY: Driving Change Together: Youth, Local Organizations and Governments Co-Create Employment Solutions in Serbia
Related Sustainable Development Goals and Global Compact for Migration Objectives
Lydia is one of six women in their late teens and early 20s taking a beginning sewing course in the Technical School “15 May” in Prokuplje, Serbia. Two years ago, she migrated to another European country for more opportunities because she found it hard to get a job as a young person in her small town. But she soon came back to Prokuplje, since it was hard to live abroad and it was difficult to find a job there too. Like Lydia, many returnees to Prokuplje are young people who are members of the Roma community. Lydia and her classmates know that their best chance of success is to get more education and a good set of skills so that they can qualify for open jobs or start their own small businesses.
To help these young people and open up more opportunities, local communities must strengthen and better coordinate between a host of local services, organizations and governance sectors (education, employment, technology and more). How do youth, migrants, Roma, educators and the private sector work together with local governments to jointly identify community solutions for the wellbeing of all? How can community organizations act as facilitators between the local government and the populations they serve to foster peer-to-peer support and dialogue?
Read the case study (English; Serbian) to find out how and read 4 tips that we learned from putting this approach into practice, including: empowering local changemakers for more sustainable, inclusive solutions; ensuring real, long-term engagement and coordination for true inclusive policymaking, instead of token participation; co-developing solutions with a myriad of local actors who can address concerns and build trust with often-marginalized communities and migrants; sharing good models of co-design for bigger impact and scaling up.
These activities are carried out through the IOM-UNDP Global Joint Programme Making Migration Work for Sustainable Development (M4SD) which supports Serbian local and national governments, the private sector and community organizations to establish community-led solutions that empower migrants and displaced people and create inclusive opportunities for all. By working together and co-creating initiatives from start to finish, young people have better educational outcomes, fulfilling employment and greater representation in local and national policy- and decision-making processes (Sustainable Development Goals 8, 16 and 17).
Learn more about our work in Serbia.