Gjylymser Nallbani

2023 IVLP Impact Award Project: Youth for the CityRepublic of Kosovo

Gjylymser started her journey within the Civil Society in Kosovo in late 2016. She has been part of non-governmental organizations that continuously work in the field of human rights, participation of young people in decision-making processes and the promotion of gender equality. Currently she holds the position of Grants Officer within the CARE International organization mainly offering financial support to young people from rural areas and is directly involved in offering technical guidance and support to grant recipients. Gjylymser coordinates, organizes, and facilitates grant management workshops for grantees to provide guidance on good grant management. To further promote youth engagement in the socio-economic sphere in Kosovo, she and the team are working with main state institutions to offer non-formal training for youngsters on soft skills and other in-demand training for easier access to the labor market, and internship opportunities. She holds a bachelor's degree in law and is currently pursuing her master’s degree in Constitutional Law.

IVLP Impact Award Project: Youth for the City

The project Youth for the City strengthened the volunteerism and civic engagement of 53 young people ages 15-24 in the Peja region of Kosovo and raised awareness about human rights issues in the country. The project enhanced the young participants' knowledge of human rights violations and shaped a more demanding mindset, where young people know about these issues and their rights, so that they can more effectively advocate to the relevant public institution for change.

Over two months, participants took part in five workshops focused on human rights, active citizenship, and volunteerism and designed two murals that promoted important social justice issues. Because of the workshops, the participants, with the assistance of local artists, designed and executed two public murals. The first mural publicly demonstrated awareness of gender-based violence issues in the country and the second promoted the need for public art and public spaces in the community. Through these activities, the young people gained a deeper understanding of their capability as agents of change and the significance of upholding the values of voluntary work and activism. Their involvement in these events helped to cultivate a sense of belonging and empathy within the community from a young age, something that can continue to develop in the future.

Gjylymser was also a panelist for the IVLP Impact Awards Alumni Discussion Series panel on “Promoting Social Change Through the Arts” which you can read more about here.

“[My] engagement in this project has helped me understand that with small attempts, [I] can have meaningful impact in everyone's life, me as a participant learning and contributing to the community... having a more friendly public space." - Project Participant

IVLP Exchange Experience 

Gjylymser was a participant in the IVLP Project Youth and Civic Engagement, organized by the U.S. Department of State and the American Councils for International Education.

Gjylymser's exchange experience led to the development of her IVLP Impact Award Project: "I remember this specific thought from Mr. Steven Billet from George Washington University as a speaker on the virtual IVLP, when asked about how did US citizens [get] this mindset where they aren't tolerant to the injustice, his answer was that it's all about how the US citizens see themselves, they understand that the people have the power, and they act upon it. Everything has to do with the right mindset. I keep this thought very close to my everyday work."

U.S. Communities Visited

Washington, DC; New Orleans, LA; Salt Lake City, UT; Madison, WI

Country: Kosovo 

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