Showing posts from 2017

Too many people think peace is impossible by Fiona

When you first think of the word “PEACE” it makes you think and do something about it because everyone wants to change the disaster in the world… And that’s what RFR stands for.
The first session was held in Tbilisi, Georgia but I didn’t have the chance to be a part of it because of a visa problem, however my mentor Adi didn’t let me miss anything what happened there and I was also connected with the group all the time.

We met all together in the city of  history, Berlin. We were 30 young people from different countries , where each of us has a story to tell. I was impressed how they managed to make every single detail on point. We started every morning with the “message of the day” and I felt so proud that the first message was a speech from Mother Teresa , because she’s a peace symbol and a role model for everyone, and she’s Albanian.

The session “Do No Harm”  from the program really impressed me because the activities that they planned helped us build relationships and connect with…

The more we give, the happier we feel by Jora

The more we give, the happier we feel.

Being a volunteer means that you are offering something – something that is not an obligation. People choose to volunteer for a variety of reasons. For some it offers the chance to give something back to the community or make a difference to the people around them. For others it provides an opportunity to develop new skills or build on existing experience and knowledge.

The essential part of every organization, volunteering is the giving of yourself, your time and talents to help others and make a difference in someone else life. And that is why we feel useful, because being there for people in need means a lot, it gives you an opportunity to provide hope, love and also to get you to know people and try new things.


Jora wrote this blog as part of her Scouting Challenge Badge. This requires 50 hours of volunteering done over 3 months within the YMCA and the community. -Editor

You’ll find a family there by Anjesa

I first started in September of 2012. I appreciate two of my friends Martin and Adrian who have been informed about the leadership training and invited me... in fact, I wasn't sure if I should go or not. I was very disappointed from the youth center of Gjakova in which I was registered as a volunteer and I have never been called in any activity because they were really passive in those days.

The first day in YMCA was unexpected, I had fun and met new friends. Dorina was our trainer and she tried to leave us good impression about YMCA. We never did training like this in Gjakova, so as the first group we were one step before other young people. We had training once a week, but for us it wasn’t enough, we wanted more. Every day we spent there was really worthy, without mentioning the issues related to the space.

 After two amazing years spent in YMCA, even by having the chance to lead a group which was hard but in the same time it was really good feeling. I had to go in university in …

I found LOVE. I found HOPE by Dren

The first time I heard about YMCA I honestly thought  it was a waste of time! However I had nothing to do at that time... I was 15, no activities, nothing out of school and it was only once a week training. I didn’t have a great experience with my group and didn't know anyone so it wasn't a great first experience. But I came.

 My mom was a big reason for me to come every week, she trusted the leadership and every time I felt anxious she reassured me. It was hard at first but then something became a thing and I felt comfortable coming every week and then there were days I didn't want to come but I still came.

Then I  volunteered and become a peer trainer. I didn’t know my partner Drenusha at first, but after we worked together more and more she become a really important person in my personal and YMCA life...we became friends. She is the person that helped me through public speaking, I’m very social person but when it comes to public speaking I struggled and it w…

There is no other place that makes me feel myself! by Fiona

The first time at the YMCA, I didn’t have a clue what it was, what happens and I don’t know what made me to continue the training... it was just a feeling that kept me. 

There is no where or better yet there is no other place that makes me feel myself. The motivation that I get every time I enter the organization, I feel safe. I know there are people there who protects my rights.

I had a lot of problems to express my thoughts, being a ‘"peer trainer" has helped me a lot! I even trained two groups of young people who were successful and completed the three levels of leadership training.

The first time I meet an international person was at the YMCA, the first time I traveled abroad was with the YMCA, the first time I flew on an airplane was with YMCA, everything I started YMCA helped me make it possible.
I found myself here, considering that I don't really have any religious or political learning and that i question methods and mentalities I can say that myself is in the YMCA…

"A place I belong" by Arber

Everything started with the question "how to spend my free time?’’

One of my friends invited me to be part of an organisation which I didn’t have a clue about. At first I  thought to myself what will I lose if I go and take a look? Then I started going every week and I started liking it more and more every time, then I couldn't wait to come every Saturday for Leadership training in Peja.

 At first I meet a lot of  new people, whom liked to hear my thoughts. I just felt free to express my ideas without being judged. I changed the way of thinking at the YMCA and that's the first thing I achieved. I started to see things from different points.

The biggest change that I achieved is when I came back from France. There I met a lot of new cultures from the world which changed me... it made me feel better for myself and my future. 

Even if I regret some of my choices I made in life, I’ll never regret the day I accepted to be part of the YMCA because I feel myself  here and it’s the …

I hope my experience will not end here by Sabrija

Hello! I am Sabrija Nikoqeviq.  I am part of the YMCA for about 2 years. I participated in the Youth Empowerment Program, Y-Woman for Equality and Gender Equality, Ten Sing for Drama and Art.

I was invited by a friend to be part of YMCA in 2015. In the beginning I did not know much about this organization for the empowerment of youth but by the time I managed to integrate with the group, the staff and the aims of this organization.

 YMCA helped me to freely express my thoughts, to create a new society, to learn more about the problems my society and people around and solve them.

After I completed the 3 Leadership levels, I joined the new Y WoMan group. It was a large group of 20 members, each sharing our daily thoughts, experiences of equality and gender rights, where we also learned many rights that we did not know we have.

Good experience I also gained in Ten Sing for drama and art. This was a very profitable program for YMCA youth, because being part of this program they have understoo…

We rise by lifting others by Eron

I always wanted a place to hang out with friends, exchange our opinions or ideas for any topic. This wish of mine came true when I joined the community Leadership project in Junik. I immediately informed all my close friends and we applied together. We just could not wait for the sessions to start. Even though we all knew each other, we were all just waiting for that one person to start talking. To be honest, I was terrified at first. We all knew that it was the beginning of something great. The session started with a good cup of coffee. After that we started discussing about a specific topic, which was great because we get to debate and learn new things from others. The last but not least part of the session is our favorite part of the day, games. We used to just have fun with games, but after each game we learn something new here, a point or moral or way of looking at things. The Community Leadership training has 3 levels, I just finished the first one. At the end of each level we ha…

The priority = developing young people by Qlirim

My name is Qlirim Tofaj and I live in Junik. I am 18 years old and I have finished Natural Science in the Gymnasium “ Kuvendi  Junikut” in Junik. I  have been involved in the organisation for one year  In this organization I have started with Community Leadership program where among other things I have learned about stereotypes, prejudices, democracy, volunteering, etc. 

During my time in the the Leadership Program training I have learned a lot of new things and I have felt really motivated, I have gained a lot of self confidence and I have gained more skills to express myself. I like a lot of things here, firstly the staff is very good and well prepared, good attitude and work discipline are never missed. The priority of this organization is education and development of young people and is one of the main things that motivates me the most to be part of this organization.

I can literally say that my experience in the project was and I believe it will continue to be amazing for as lon…

My valuable experience by Jetmir

My experience at the YMCA

My name is Jetmir Tofaj, I am 17 years old, this year I will be graduated from high school “Tafil Kasumaj” in Deçan and I live in Junik. I have been part of George Williams Youth Association in Kosovo in the Community Leadership program. It was a very valuable experience for me, during this time we have spent amazing moments together.

I think that GWY is a very productive organization where the methods used there are attractive to interact with young people. In the Community Leadership program we have learned for different topics which are very useful that promotes youth moral values, topics that helped us to overcome fear from public speaking, to not have prejudice, to develop our leadership potential, to know the importance of doing volunteer work in the community where we live and many more.

The time that we spent in this organization and in the Community Leadership training has enabled us to work more and to develop our creativity and also to have the ch…

History of Work in Yugoslavia (1920's Report)

Y.M.C.A.  WORK IN GENERAL The foundation of the Christian activities among the laymen in our country was laid down by Dr. John R. Mott in April 1911. Dr. Mott has visited the University in Belgrade at that time , and a direct consequence of his conferences the Student Christian Movement begun. And and has continued its active work under splendid leadership of Dr. Marco Lecco, former Rector of the University. These activities has been purely spiritual  and limited only to the students and  professors of the University. At that time we had no other Christian laymen’s movement. The name of the Young Men’s Christian Association was known only in a limited circle.
The wars in 1912 and 1913, when Serbia had to fight for her freedom, together with the great European war, interrupted the steady development of the nation, but in spite of all these obstacles the S.  C  M.  did not…

I'm so thankful to the YMCA by Etnik

The first training with the YMCA was in February 2013, many years ago from now, and what can I say except share my story with you...

 I ejoined this organisation because  I was looking for some new experiences from my daily routine, and the only opportunity was the YMCA, because it was the first organisation that opened the doors for young people in our municipality.

The first day at the YMCA is unforgettable, meeting 20 new people which had different experiences and stories and were ready to share them with you, experience at the YMCA had its ups and downs, starting from problems with youth center, which wasn’t always open, and that constrained the  training's to be held in different spaces, but as a young boy that was looking for new experiences I decided to be Leadership trainer. From the first session I had to lead a group of  25 young people and it was fantastic, one year part of the YMCA and I had my own group in which I could show my leadership skills.

 Starting from that tim…

I saw the YMCA's name by Dardan

The first time that I heard about YMCA was while talking with a friend who was already a Peer Trainer at the organisation in Gjakova.

I didn’t know what a peer trainer was, he invited me to be part of it but I thought I didn’t have time and I was used to do my daily routine. Part of my routine was playing Basketball which I did three times a week, back then that was my passion and I wanted to know something more about it, while reading about the history of the sport I saw YMCA's name. Then I got interested to be a part of that group that invited me the first time but again I couldn't find time so I continued my daily routine.  

One day I decided it just go and try the YMCA, it was very strange being with strangers, but after a great icebreaker we started to get closer each other. Day by day it was fun and it started to feel like family, I learned that Leadership is not a role but it’s a lifestyle, not only this but a lot of different things like how does the group function when …

I am lucky to be part of this family called YMCA by Ariana

I remember the first time I came at the YMCA. Back then we didn’t have a YMCA center, we kept our sessions at a local youth center.

 I  remember that afternoon it was raining and I didn’t find my umbrella so I got wet and arrived late. My first opinion for the YMCA was a place to have fun and meet new people, I didn’t even imagine that the YMCA in the future is going to be a second family for me. I remember how good and proud I felt when I met Dorina our CEO on the bus while traveling to Prishtina. It was that day when I learned even more about YMCA, also that day Dorina encouraged me to apply for Greece Camp, something that I wasn’t really informed about. I applied I was really happy and lucky to be one of the participants that went to a summer camp somewhere  abroad.

 I started with the leadership program where I created my own group. I also went to Y WoMan training and YMCA now was a place where I could express my feelings, my opinion without the fear of getting judged from others. …

A challenge that made me stronger by Diona

For me it was a challenge that I started doing with pleasure.  A challenge that made me stronger! A challenge that made me feel better, and with the safest positively in the things I do in life. A challenge that makes me understand that starting from me I can change the world!

In life we choose if we want to be bad or good, we create ourselves, our character and personality, but whatever we create, a monster or an angle, everything depends on the environment that surrounds us! Family, relatives , friends and everything that happens to us is the reason for all the virtues that we warm ourselves, whether it is good or bad!

But, change does not depend on anything that happens around us. It does not depend on the world that surrounds you, but from the inside of your heart, spirit, mind, desire, passion, dreams, your will to change your future... including the environment around you! If you truly believe that you can do it, if you really feel the ignition of an unbreakable fire within you…