Belgrade, 10.09.2021 – Within the program of the German Development Cooperation „Inclusion of Roma and other marginalized groups in Serbia, implemented by GIZ, a virtual study visit was organized with the goal to create a platform for exchange and joint learning between the Serbian and German stakeholders  dealing with the inclusion of marginalized groups at the labour market. The virtual exchange lasted for six days and included more than 100 representatives of state authorities and the civil sector.

The delegations of Germany and Serbia exchanged experiences on the topic of informing marginalized groups on support employment measures and on the important role of the civil society organizations when it comes to mediating between these groups and the institutions offering this type of support. Best practice examples of active employment measures for marginalized groups and hard to employ persons as well as evidence based employment policies and methodologies for monitoring and evaluation of effects of active employment measures were presented.

-We are very proud that we were able to organize this virtual exchange despite the restrictions due to the Covid-19 pandemic. This virtual exchange was very successful and the online format made it possible to include more participants. This is a huge step forward in our cooperation and we find it excellent that we had participants from both the civil sector and state authorities, because that is the key to successful implementation of inclusion measures. Only with joint forces we will be able to reach the goal of successful integration not only of the Roma population but also of other marginalized groups in society and at the labour market – said Aleksandra Dimić-Ugrinaj, Program Leader of  the “Inclusion of Roma and other marginalized groups in Serbia”

Assistant Minister of Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social Affairs, who led the Serbian delegation, Professor Dr. Sandra Grujičić pointed out that the virtual exchange of experiences with the institutions from Germany had fulfilled all expectations.

The virtual exchange of experiences with the institutions from Germany in the areas of creating evidence based active employment policy measures, in targeting marginalized groups of unemployed persons with the measures, including the Roma population, as well as the monitoring of effects of the measures for employment, fulfilled the expectations of the Ministry of Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social Affairs completely. We are certain that the continuation of the successful cooperation with GIZ and the German institutions according to the best practice examples in the area of employment will contribute to further improvement of the employment policy in Serbia – said Professor Dr. Sandra Grujičić, Assistant Minister for Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social Affairs.

-The virtual study visit has exceeded all our expectations, not only when it comes to the technical limitations that we thought the online learning and exchange methodology would have, but also in the sense of content quality that was offered to the participants of the study visit – said Nenad Vladislavljev, President of the Association of Roma Students.

The program of German development cooperation “Inclusion of Roma and other marginalized groups in Serbia” in cooperation with the Ministry for Human and Minority Rights and Social Dialogue implements measures to combat discrimination and stereotypes, improves the cooperation between the main institutions at the national and local level and implements measures of economic empowerment and development of local mechanisms.