11 October, 2021
On October 11, Foundation Together Albania organized the round table “Mental Health in an Unequal World” to mark World Mental Health Day.
The purpose of the roundtable was to share with the audience different perspectives and solutions in reducing the level of inequality to access mental health services. FTA had the opportunity to present in the round table a quality research on putting light into very specific mental health problems of adolescents and youth who have received direct psychological support through www.nukjevetem.al platform over the last twelve months.
From the research conducted by PhD. Skerdi Zahaj, expert of nukjevetem.al platform, was found that the most common problems for which young people and adolescents have sought help during the last twelve months are anxiety, depression, suicidal ideation, sexual abuse and relationship problems. The study also showed that youth and adolescents have difficulty accessing mental health services. For problems such as anxiety, depression or suicidal ideation, young people have access only to treatment with medication but not to psychotherapeutic treatment.
This round table was attended by various relevant stakeholders and institutions such as UNICEF, Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, Municipality of Tirana, World Vision, WHO Regional Office in Tirana, mental health experts, youth from Ismail Qemal High School, representatives from Faculty of Social Sciences and local and international organisations.
Mr. De Bernardi, UNICEF Albania representative, in his speech stressed the importance and attention that should be given to mental health and equal access to mental health services.
Deputy Major, Mrs Anisa Ruseti stated that the Municipality of Tirana supports equal access to mental health especially of people with vulnerable and disadvantaged background. To raise awareness on mental health and mental health care, Mrs Ruseti, invited all the guests and audience to join the first marathon ‘Tirana Runs for Mental Health’
During this event it was discussed how technology reduces inequality in access to mental health services and the impact of the pandemic on the well-being and mental health. The participants unanimously agreed on the attention that should be given to mental health care and the consequences caused by Covid-19 on the mental health of the population. An important issue discussed was also the role of media on reporting mental health problems and its role on changing from stigma and discrimination to awareness raising. All the stakeholders stressed the importance of cooperation in improvement of services and reduction of the level of inequality to access to services of mental health.
In the closing remarks all the participants agreed that more support and funding should be allocated to initiatives and mental health services.
The online world is where youth spend most of their time nowadays. Thus, it is important to talk about human trafficking risks through a communication that is focused online – notice also school psychologist among their students from Tirana, Durrës, Shkodra and Kukës.
Selected and mentored by the psychologists of their schools, young students are part of the Foundation Together Albania media awareness-raising campaign #DiTëMbrohem, which aims to empower youth at identifying risks of Human Trafficking and having sufficient information where to seek help.
Full of creative and original ideas, young people are designing raising awareness materials and information that will speak to their peers and will enhance the public debate about the phenomenon.
The risks associated with Human Trafficking or any other types of exploitation of vulnerable groups which takes place online or in real world are numerous. Thus, providing information on identification, protection and reporting is the key point of the campaign. Developing and designing posters, videos, presentations, songs or online leaflets, young people involved in this campaign are highly motivated to send clear messages of empowerment and information to their peers across the country to be disseminated via social media outlet.
During the discussion’s students identified a number of factors that can be well received by their peers – they are striving for a direct and friendly approach. It is already clear that their ideas will engage youth and get their attention to the HT problem.
COVID-19 pandemic has caused young people to spend an increasing amount of time online. Our online counseling service nukjevetem.al has become a safe and friendly environment where youth and children have sought help. Foundation Together Albania through its awareness raising campaign will use the large number of youth visiting our www.nukjevetem.al platform and social medial channels to enhance the reachability of the messages.
On 2 November 2017, the executive director Ms. Vera Remskar and the project coordinator Ms. Anisa Zace had a meeting with the director of Pre-university Education Mrs. Zamira Gjini.
The meeting took place at the office of the Ministry of Education, Sports and Youth.
During the meeting there was discussion about the services offered by the web-page www.nukjevetem.al to young people in Albania, upcoming youth-focused collaborations and the lectures which will be held in schools as part of the project “Nuk Je Vetem” .
On 20 October 2017, members of Foundation Together Albania, as part of the month against human-trafficking, participated in the activity organized by the psychologist of the Jeronim De Rada School.
During the activity there was discussion about human trafficking in Albania, the most vulnerable targets and ways to fight this phenomenon.
FTA gave a presentation to the young people about the website www.nukjevetem.al and the ways this site can help them.
On Thursday, 12 October 2017, the experts of the website www.nukjevetem.al met together in the offices of Foundation Together Albania.
The executive director Ms. Vera Remskar participated by telephone.
During the meeting there was discussion about the progress, achievements and difficulties that experts face in online counselling. We discussed possible ways to improve the service for young people that use our website.
Part of the discussion was the planning of future activities within the framework of www.nukjevtem.al.
On 10 October 2017, on World Mental Health Day, members of Foundation Together Albania participated in an activity organized with the pupils of Sami Frashëri High School in Tirana.
During the activity there was discussion about mental health, stigmatization, and the culture of asking for help.
Members of FTA had the opportunity to make a presentation to the teenagers about the website www.nukjevetem.al, and the ways this website can help them to face and maybe solve their problems.
On 5 October 2017, Foundation Together Albania (FTA), welcomed to their offices members of the Albanian National Youth Network (ANYN).
The meeting was focused on a detailed mutual understanding of ANYN and FTA work; there was also discussion about possible collaboration between the two organizations and the benefits that this collaboration will bring to Albanian youth.
On 19 September 2017, members of Foundation Together Albania held a meeting with members of the Children’s Human Rights Center of Albania. The meeting took place at CRCA’s office. The executive director of CRCA Mr. Altin Hazizaj and the program manager Ms. Mersila Ballo were present.
During the meeting we made a presentation about the website nukjevetem.al, the way it works and statistics of website usage. There was discussion about the extension of assistance through collaboration with other agencies, such as ALO116 agency.
It is worth mentoning the discussion about a potential collaboration between FTA and the legal office of CRCA, that may make it possible to offer the help of a legal expert on our website.
On 8 – 10 September 2017, Foundation Together Albania with the support of the Norwegian Embassy organized a team-building seminar in Theth. The executive director Ms. Vera Remskar, the experts of the website www.nukjevetem.al, the coordinator and the assistant coordinator of the project all participated. This seminar helped strengthen group relationships, and the participants discussed strengths and weaknesses of online counselling and new ways to improve communication among the group.
Foundation Together Albania organized the First International Conference on “Sexuality and Youth in Albania – Cultural Context, Behavior and the Media”, held in Tirana 11 – 12 February 2017.
On the first day of the conference there was discussion about the CULTURAL CONTEXT , sexual behavior and habits among Albanian youth. On the second day the focus was COMPREHENSIVE SEXUAL EDUCATION IN SCHOOLS and MASS MEDIA INFLUENCES ON YOUTH SEXUALITY. These topics were presented by national and international experts.
After the presentations on the second day, four working groups produced recommendations which will be implemented soon.
The conference was supported by the Norwegian Embassy and UNFPA office in Albania.
It was also supported by the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth, Ministry of Health and Social Care, and Tirana Municipality.
Within the framework of the promotion of online counselling platform “Nuk Je Vetem” (www.nukjevetem.al), the staff of Foundation Together Albania held a meeting with the primary beneficiaries of this project, the teenagers.
On 20 December 2016, an expert from the website, Mrs. Orsjola Mihali, gave a presentation to the pupils of Luigj Gurakuqi School in Elbasan. During the presentation the staff members of the Foundation explained how the website www.nukjevetem.al works and the benefits that this online platform brings. The teenagers welcomed this initiative as it was something that was missing in their lives, they also described some of the major problems that they face in life.
On Tuesday, 20 December 2016, Foundation Together Albania visited Onufri School of Arts in Elbasan to promote the online counselling platform “Nuk Je Vetem” (www.nukjevetem.al).
An expert from the website, Mrs. Orsjola Mihali, and members of the FTA gave a presentation to the pupils of Onufri School. During the presentation the staff members of the Foundation explained how the website www.nukjevetem.al works and the benefits that this online platform brings.
There was discussion about the problems they face in their everyday life, and ways that our website can help them. The teenagers also described some of the major problems that they face in life, how they try to address them and how much they would appreciate help in solving them.
On 16 December 2016, the executive director Ms. Vera Remskar had a meeting with the deputy minister of Education and Sports Mrs. Nora Malaj.
They discussed the services offered by the web-site www.nukjevetem.al to young people in Albania and the lectures held in schools as part of the project “Nuk Je Vetem” .
They also discussed the First International Conference “Sexuality and Youth in Albania – Cultural Context, Behavior and the Media”, which will be held in Tirana 11 – 12 February 2017 by Foundation Together Albania.
On 16 December 2016, we held a meeting for the experts of the webpage www.nukjevetem.al.
The meeting was held in the offices of Foundation Together Albania.
There was a discussion about the progress, achievements and difficulties during the first ten months.
Part of the discussion was to plan activities for 2017 within the framework of “Nuk Je Vetem” and there was also discussion about the First International Conference “Sexuality and Youth in Albania – Cultural Context, Behavior and the Media”, which will be held in Tirana 11 – 12 February 2017.
On Wednesday, 7 December 2016 Foundation Together Albania participated in the Youth Organizations Fair.
The aim of the Fair was to present youth organizations to donors, public institutions and Albanian youth. All organizations gave information about their role in society; their progress, programs and issues they deal with.
In the second part of the activity, youth organizations met the Balkans Ministers of Youth, who had gathered in Albania to celebrate the opening of the Regional Youth Cooperation Office of the Western Balkans (RYCO).
On 30 November 2016 the executive director of Foundation Together Albania Ms. Vera Remskar, and Ms. Ina Verzivolli the director of the State Agency for Protection of Children’s Rights signed a cooperation agreement.
The purpose of this cooperation is to formalize collaboration between the two parties, setting commitments for achieving the objectives with the aim of building a functional system for psycho-social well-being and protection of children in Albania. Also to present Albanian youth and agencies with the online counselling service www.nukjevetem.al supported by the Norwegian Embassy in Albania.
Foundation Together Albania made a presentation at Ibrahim Muça High School in Librazhd to promote the online counselling platform “Nuk Je Vetem” (www.nukjevetem.al).
The presentation was led by our school psychologist Orsjola Qendro, one of the experts from our website. She discussed with pupils of the high school how the website www.nukjevetem.al works, the benefits that the online platform brings to all Albanian young people and the importance of asking for help.
Foundation Together Albania made a presentation at Halit Bërzheshta High School in Përrenjas to promote the online counselling platform “Nuk Je Vetem” (www.nukjevetem.al).
Our school psychologist Orsjola Qendro, one of the experts from our website, discussed with pupils how the website www.nukjevetem.al works, the benefits that this online platform brings to them and the importance of asking for help. They expressed their appreciation of this initiative because they did not know where to go to share their problems.
On 30 November 2016, Foundation Together Albania in collaboration with the State Agency for Children’s Rights held a meeting at COD – Center For Openness And Dialogue in Tirana.
The meeting included organizations which operate in the field of child and youth psycho-social well-being, and also pupils from Hoteleri Turizem Professional School.
Also present were local institutions, child protection units, organizations such as Save the Children, Terre des hommes, SOS Children’s Villages, Observatori for children’s rights, SHKEJ, ARSIS etc .
During the meeting we presented the members with the website nukjevetem.al, also we had an activity with Hoteleri Turizem pupils in which the focus was on changing the culture and asking for help when needed.
On Thursday, 23 November 2016, members of Foundation Together Albania went to promote the online counselling platform “Nuk Je Vetem” (www.nukjevetem.al) at two schools in Pukë: Migjeni Primary School and Sabah Sinani High School.
The presentation of the project was conducted by our clinical psychologist Mr. Elvis Popaj, who is one of the experts from the website. The teenagers were given the necessary information about our website, the way it works, the different kinds of problems they can share, and most importantly that the service we provide is free and confidential.
They also had questions about psycho-social health, problems they currently face, and how to cope with their problems.
On 20 October 2016, Foundation Together Albania supported by the Norwegian Embassy organized an informative session to promote the online counselling platform “Nuk Je Vetem” (www.nukjevetem.al).
The session was held at the “Cloud” building in Tirana, with the participation of pupils from Fan Noli, Qemal Stafa and Sami Frashëri high schools; school psychologists; the director of the State Agency for Protection of Children’s Rights Ms. Ina Verzivolli; and Ms. Aspasjana Kerxhalli from the Department of Youth.
The experts that were present: Sabjola Bregu, Ardita Korriku, Denisa Ndreka, Enkeleda Sako, Almandina Guma.
The activity developed into a conversation between the guests, allowing everybody to express their problems and to get the necessary feedback.
Ms. Verzivolli brought attention to the importance of strong collaboration between schools, teachers, state structures and organizations to improve the support for the psycho-social well-being of Albanian young people.
The focus was also on the stigma of asking for help that is preventing people in our society from sharing and solving their problems.
On 7 – 9 October 2016, Foundation Together Albania, with the support of the Norwegian Embassy , organized in Pogradec a second seminar to increase the capacities of the counselling team of www.nukjevetem.al to provide online counselling
During the seminar important issues were discussed:
• Specifics of online counselling
• Ground rules of online counselling
• Empathy, rapport and the working alliance online
• Aspects of the psychology of cyberspace
• Do’s and Don’ts
• Practical exercises in how to respond, structure a response etc
• Responding to suicide letters (Shukrije Statovci)
• Hard-to-respond-to topics/messages
• Professional and moral dilemmas; ethical guidelines and issues
• Future training, research and development needs for individuals, for FTA and for online mental health provision
On 27 September 2016, the executive director, Ms. Vera Remskar and the board member, Mr. Nicholas Whyte, had a meeting with His Excellency, Mr. Johan Ndisi.
During the meeting there was discussion about the achievements of Foundation Together Albania, and the possibilities of further cooperation between the two parties.
On Thursday, 23 June 2016, we held a meeting in the offices of Foundation Together Albania with the experts of the website www.nukjevetem.al.
During the meeting there was discussion about the progress, achievements and difficulties of online counselling. It was suggested that we organize another seminar with the aim of strengthening online counselling skills. We will probably organize this seminar during October with international trainers in the field of online counselling.
It was suggested that we undertake research in the field of youth mental health.
There was also discussion of the first conference which will be held in November 2016 and our experts were invited to participate and present their research on mental health.
On 2 June 2016, Foundation Together Albania was invited to the radio station “Radio Travel” to talk about the online counselling platform “Nuk Je Vetem” (www.nukjevetem.al) .
“Radio Travel” is a radio station which is popular with young people in Albania, and so members of FTA were invited to present their project directly to the young audience. During the presentation it was explained how the website www.nukjevetem.al works and the benefits that this online and confidential platform brings.
Young people who were listening to the program had the possibility to send messages and ask for more information regarding our website.
On 22 May 2016, the Youth Organizations Fair took place in Tirana, as an initiative of the Municipality of Tirana and the Directorate of Youth, on Car-free Day.
Foundation Together Albania was part of this Fair, with their “You are Not Alone” project.
Representatives of Tirana Municipality and the Directorate of Youth were present during the activity greeting and congratulating us for the work accomplished so far.
The deputy mayor, Mr .Arbi Mazniku, also present at the fair, stopped to greet “You are not Alone” in the Foundation Together Albania booth, praising the work and the importance of this service for young people.
On 1 – 3 April, Foundation Together Albania, with the support of the Norwegian Embassy, held the Capacity Building Seminar of the Online Counselling Team of nukjevetem.al & nukjevet.net in Durrës. Experts from both websites participated in the seminar, along with the executive director of Foundation Together Mrs. Vera Remskar, the board members of Foundation Together Kosova, Mr. Dashamir Bërxulli and Mrs. Merita Berisha, and the trainers Mr. Stephen Goss and Mss. Sabine Stellingwerf.
The seminar was led by Mr. Goss, who focused on the basic rules of online counselling, emphasized the importance of empathy when working online, stressed the psychological aspects in online networks, and also the “Do-s” and Don’t-s” of online counselling.
Ms. Sabine Stellingwerf with wide experience in online counselling for people with suicidal thoughts, highlighted the organization of response when users write about self-harming thoughts or feelings of hopelessness.
On Thursday, 31 March 2016, Foundation Together Albania held an event to promote the counselling website www.nukjevetem.al at the premises of COD (Center for Openness and Dialogue) in the Prime Minister’s building. This event was focused on seeking help as an indispensable and necessary phenomenon for all young people.
The focus of the event was high school students from Sami Frashëri High School and Andon Zako Cajupi High School, who were accompanied by their school psychologists, Mrs. Irena Cela, and Mrs. Elda Bujari.
The event was attended by the ambassador of Norway, Mr. Jann Brathu, together with his colleague Mr. Haakon Blankenborg, general director at the Norwegian Foreign Ministry and the consul of Norway in Albania.
Mr. Brathu in his greeting speech to the young people did not forgot to mention that being young is difficult not only in our culture, but in many other cultures and countries around the world. He encouraged the young people to work hard on their choices by reminding them that they “ARE NOT ALONE”!
On 21 March 2016, Foundation Together Albania was invited to take part in the television program “Ditë e Re” to promote the online counselling platform “Nuk Je Vetem” (www.nukjevetem.al)
The project coordinator Ms. Anisa Zaçe spoke about the project implementation and activities which have been organized to promote awareness of the portal by young people in Albania and abroad.. Ms. Zaçe also explained how the website www.nukjevetem.al works and the benefits that this online platform brings.
Find the full presentation in the link below :
The staff of Foundation Together Albania held a meeting to promote the online counselling platform “Nuk Je Vetem” (www.nukjevetem.al) with the primary beneficiaries of this project, the teenagers.
On 22 February 2016, FTA gave a presentation to students at Sami Frashëri High School in Tirana. During the presentation the staff members of the Foundation explained how the website www.nukjevetem.al works and the benefits that this online platform brings. The teenagers welcomed this initiative as it was something that was missing in their lives. According to them, one of the main factors that makes this project so attractive is the confidentiality that the service offers.
On 10 February 2016, Foundation Together Albania launched the “Nuk Je Vetem” project, the first website for online counselling in Albania.
The event was held at Tulla Cultural Center. Volunteer experts, members of other important organizations in the country, representatives of the Municipality, UNICEF, and representatives of different Ministries all attended the event.
It is worth noting that the event was attended by the minister of Innovation and Public Administration Ms. Nilena Harito, and the Norwegian ambassador Mr. Jaan Brathu, who accompanied by the executive director of the Foundation Ms. Vera Remskar gave an opening speech.
During the event there were performances by the “Ansambli I Valleve Popullore” and the well-known singer Mr. Alban Nimani.
On Friday, 22 January, we held a mini-training with the experts that have agreed to be part of our online counselling website, in the offices of Foundation Together Albania.
The experts that were present: Redona Dudushi, Eni Tabaku, Oriola Pampuri, Sabjola Bregu, Ardita Korriku, Eugena Lile, Denisa Ndreka, Orsiola Miha, Elvis Popaj, Eljona Dine.
The meeting was led by the executive director, Ms. Vera Remskar. The project coordinator and project assistant were also present.
During the meeting, we presented the therapists with the rules of online counselling, the way it works, what they have to know in order to do the work in the best possible way. We presented them with some examples from the website nukjevet.net. We discussed the examples and debated over the approach we should have when we answer the questions, or the concerns of the users.
On 14-16 January 2016, in the offices of Foundation Together Albania, a training session was held on website administration.
The training was conducted by the executive director Ms. Vera Remskar and the website administrators of www.nukjevet.net.
They gave training and explanation to the web administrators of www.nukjevtem.al about how the website works, how to share new questions and post experts’ answers.
Part of the training was also the discussion about confidentiality, ethical guidelines, and how to protect the website users from being exposed.
On 19 November 2015, Foundation Together Albania, in the framework of the project ‘You are not alone’, online counselling for the young people of Albania, organized two meetings with students of the Master’s program at the Faculty of Social Sciences, Psychology branch, that had expressed the desire to be part of the advisory group for the online counselling website www.nukjevetem.al
The meeting was held at the offices of FTA and was led by the executive director, Ms. Vera Remskar. During the meeting, the project was presented in detail with all the specifics that belong to the work and commitment of volunteer experts in website counselling, including professional and technical standards.