The long-term goal of previous and current Milieukontakt programs in Albania is “to develop a strong and democratically organized environmental NGO movement. This means a movement that has a high visibility in society, is able to raise public awareness and is capable of playing an important role in policy- and decision-making processes, on a local, national and international level”
In all programs Milieukontakt Albania conducted, three elements were leading: building capacities, involving citizens and solving environmental problems. We provided training, coaching, support and advice for organization working for sustainability. We stimulated and supported the involvement and empowerment of citizens and developed processes of participative strategy development and decision making. We connected these processes to concrete solutions for environmental problems. Expertise of Milieukontakt Albania includes not only supporting truly bottom up processes but also expert knowledge on a variety of environmental topics and on environmental laws.
Our approach, competencies and projects have:
• Served as an awareness and advocacy tool for ensuring local ownership over capacity development processes;
• Fostered environmental CSOs participation in policy making process and capacity development;
• Provided a framework for active environmental CSOs involvement and integrating civil society feedback to major national priorities and policies;
• Served as a platform for NGO-government dialogue and increasing demand for public participation, transparency and democracy.
Initiating and maintaining dialogue:
The strategy of Milieukontakt Albania is based on the development of dialogue and partnership between different stakeholders in the fields of nature and environment protection. In Albania we assisted in strengthening dialogue and partnership between civil society, authorities, business and other stakeholders on different levels (local, regional, national and international).
Milieukontakt Albania has developed specific methodologies for participation. They include:
- Training in which we apply the Technology of Participation and the experiential learning cycle of the American educational theorist David Kolb. This approach enables participants to share experiences and reflect on them, generalize reflections and experiences and directly put the new insights into practice;
- Peer-to-peer coaching, as a tool for capacity building and for exchange between NGOs;
- E-learning and use of social media as tools for capacity building, collecting and exchanging information, developing joint documents and plans, and promotion of materials and ideas developed;
- Building partnerships with local NGOs/CSOs and delegation of tasks to these groups in combination with guidance by Milieukontakt;
- Result based management
Milieukontakt Albania has extensive experience in developing and implementing projects according to result-based management methodology based on the World Bank methodology described in the book: ”Ten steps towards a result based monitoring and evaluation system” (Jody Zall Kusec, Worldbank 2004).