16 June 2020
The Coalition of NGOs Child Protection in Kosovo – KOMF has sent a letter to the Minister of Finance, Hykmete Bajrami, the Minister of Health, Armend Zemaj and the Minister of Labour and Social Welfare, Skender Reçica, to seek support from the non-governmental sector for providing direct services to vulnerable children. KOMF has requested that during the planning and budgetary revisions of the Government of the Republic of Kosovo, the protection of the fundamental rights of children should be an absolute priority for the Government of the Republic of Kosovo, placing this priority before capital investments.
The Covid-19 pandemic has worsened the situation of vulnerable children, many of whom have been left without the necessary services, especially children with disabilities, children involved in hard labour, children working in street, neglected children, and so on. At this stage it is important to take the necessary steps to mitigate the consequences for children by providing quality direct services, through sustainable financing of services for vulnerable children, increasing support for service providers and contracting them during this period of difficult during and after pandemic.
Non-governmental organizations providing direct services to vulnerable children are financially supported by the central level (MLSW and MoH), international donors, municipalities and the business sector. MLSW and MoH through the process of public call, every year have funded organizations licensed to provide direct services to vulnerable children and citizens in need of services. This year, as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic situation, there has been no call for financial support from licensed organizations providing direct services. Also, support from the business sector has declined significantly due to the situation created by the pandemic.
For the reasons mentioned above, KOMF requires:
- Urgent announcement of regular annual calls for funding Non-Governmental Organizations for the provision of services by the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare and the Ministry of Health.
- Increasing the budget for financing direct social and health services provided by the non-governmental sector.
KOMF notes that the general economic situation has been worsed as a result of Covid-19 pandemic and budgetary revisions may be made.
KOMF demands that in the framework of budget revisions, the budget of financing direct social and health services for vulnerable children provided by the non-governmental sector, should be increased.