Through the reduction of poverty and social exclusion, Montenegrin society has the opportunity to accelerate sustainable human development.
Strengthening the social protection system within the joint UN project “Activate! Integrated Social Protection and Employment in order to accelerate progress for young people in Montenegro ”was at the focus of the event which brought together UN representatives in Montenegro, project partners and donors who support the initiative.
The initiative, shortly called "Activate!", is aimed at activating young people who are on the margins of society - not in employment, education or training (NEET) - in order to provide them with opportunities through enabling more efficient social policies and improved social services.
Improving the skills and qualifications of young people, especially those in vulnerable groups, are key to reducing their dependence on social assistance and also to their activation in the labor market. - Jevrosima Pejovic, Head of the Directorate for Labor and Employment at the Ministry of Economic Affairs.
The UN Resident Coordinator in Montenegro, Peter Lundberg, pointed out that the "Activate!" project is especially important in the context of COVID-19 pandemic.
At a time of socio-economic crisis caused by the pandemic, the “Activate!” project has become even more relevant given the growing number of people at risk of poverty and in need of social protection. - Peter Lundberg, UN Resident Coordinator in Montenegro
The project aimed at strengthening the social protection system has been implemented since November 2019 by the UN agencies in Montenegro in cooperation with national partners - the Ministry of Finance and Social Welfare, the Ministry of Economic Development, the Employment Bureau, social work centers and civil society organizations. The initiative is funded by the Joint SDG Fund, whose donors are member states of the United Nations, the European Union, international agencies, the private sector and individuals.
Through the reduction of poverty and social exclusion, Montenegrin society has the opportunity to accelerate sustainable human development. - Mihaela Bauer, Deputy UNICEF Representative in Montenegro
The joint UN project “Activate!” is based on two innovative components: a) simulations of social policies that enable modeling of the potential impact of social protection reforms and b) development of human-centered services, tailored for users.
Marija Stajović, Director General for Social Policy and Child Protection at the Ministry of Finance and Social Protection, pointed out that social policy simulations significantly help the ministry in expanding the social protection system in order to reduce poverty and adjust services to the needs of users.
Programs focused on children, displaced persons and the most vulnerable groups are a priority. The Ministry will continue with the reform of the system of social and child protection in order to increase the coverage and to better target social benefits, which, thanks to this project, will be enabled through the simulation process. - Marija Stajović, Director General for Social Policy and Child Protection at the Ministry of Finance and Social Protection
The joint UN project “Activate! "Integrated social protection and employment in order to accelerate progress for young people in Montenegro" will be implemented until the beginning of 2022.