UNDP Albania supports the Government of Albania at the national level, but has simultaneously advanced the MDG agenda by promoting the sub-national localization of the MDGs. It must be noted that this dual approach is essential and mutually reinforcing. Efforts to localize the MDGs will be ineffectual without concerted national level initiatives that strive to incorporate the MDGs into national planning and policy processes and create a political and policy environment that will enable the achievement of the MDGs. Similarly, actual substantive achievement of the MDGs can only occur at the local level while experiences and knowledge can provide crucial input to the national level. Albania was the first country to adapt Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) targets and indicators to the sub-national level, not only through the completion of MDG Regional Development Strategies and Reports for all 12 regions of the country, but also through Regional Advocacy Tours and comprehensive public awareness.
The UN Country Team selected MDG Ambassadors (renowned Albanian local personalities), and central and local government officials toured all regions of Albania and hosted town hall meetings to raise awareness of the MDGs at the local level. Media training was also carried out for each region on how to incorporate the MDGs and development issues into everyday reporting. Simultaneously, UNDP began assisting regional local governments with preparing reports and strategies on the MDGs. Utilizing both the expertise of local non-governmental organizations and the UNDP Local Governance Programme, two products emerged: MDG Regional Reports and MDG Regional Development Strategies.
Regional Development Strategies provide socio-economic analysis of a region by goals; identify regional challenges, goals and targets; and offer a thorough and comprehensive strategy for development. The strategies provide a long-term plan for achieving the Millennium Development Goals and targets, and were aligned with the National Strategy for Socio-Economic Development (now the National Strategy for Development and Integration).
Regional Reports identify priorities for each selected goal, including targets and measurable indicators; and provide a thorough analysis of the current regional situation and development opportunities for each sector. MDG Regional Reports serve as a basis for the development of Regional Strategies.
The reports and strategies were produced through an interactive and participatory process, which involved local, regional and central organizations and institutions, as well as civil society and international partners. Citizens and communities themselves identified the main development needs for their region.
The main purpose of this work was to explore and demonstrate how the MDGs could be used to build support and momentum for the MDGs from the bottom up, to assess local poverty challenges and to serve as an engine for comprehensive local development. Following the advocacy efforts of the UN team and donor community in Albania for the need to further address unequal regional progress and growing disparities between various groups of society, the Government is preparing the National Strategy for Development and Integration (NSDI), 2007-2013, which will be based on a number of sectoral and cross-cutting strategies, including national strategies for regional development and social inclusion. In essence, a new partnership will be formed between governments and citizens at the national, regional, municipal and commune level. All regions of the country will contribute to development in the hope that social and economic disparities will be reduced. It also calls attention to issues of social exclusion and regional disparity.
An Area Based Development programme was developed for Kukes - the poorest region in Albania, in order to support the implementation of the Kukes MDG Regional Development Strategy, intended to build partnerships and provide direction for ongoing and future development initiatives in the Kukes region. The Kukes Regional Development Initiative, Mine Action programme, Support to Security Sector Reform, and a gender equality project have all been working within the ABD approach to help the poorest communities in the country to meet their own development needs, while building local capacities, supporting economic development, and promoting cross-border cooperation.
UN Agencies are also supporting regional councils to establish DevInfo systems and Information Technology tools, which provide a mechanism for data collection at the regional level. This allows the Regional Council to measure regional indicators on a regular basis and monitor the progress made in the implementation of the Regional Development Strategy. Fier was the first region to complete this exercise in 2005 and Kukes and Vlora have followed in 2006. The initiative is expected to expand to other regions throughout 2007.
At the end of the process, the Regional Council produces a Regional Development Strategy monitoring report that can be used for further planning and implementation of development initiatives in the region. The Regional Council coordinates all the activities in the region while UN agencies provide technical support. The Kukes Regional Council has produced a progress report, and the Fier Regional Council has produced two progress reports.
Another initiative related to DevInfo is the Integrated Planning System (IPS), which will ensure that regional development plans are linked to the state budget, so that the development needs prioritized by the regions can be achieved. UNDP is implementing the first stage of the IPS that will include helping the government to decide how to link strategies to medium-term budget planning, with the overall purpose of reducing development disparities.
» 2013-05-17 16:11:00
"Garden of Diversity" inaugurated today in Tirana
» 2013-05-17 15:00:00
International partners call for an end to discrimination of LGBT Communities
» 2013-05-10 12:34:00
On Global Week of Road Safety, United Nations and Vodafone Albania call on citizens to make walking safe
» 2013-05-09 13:00:00
UNDP and TIKA support services for domestic violence survivors
» 2013-04-11 19:00:00
Roma Values presented through the renowned drama “Les Miserables”