If someone says that there are no opportunities in BiH, they are simply lying. Within the LEO project throughout the two years, we have implemented numerous activities that included both men and women equally.
We are living proof that the impact can be made and we did exactly that with the LEO project. It was far from easy but we took the necessary steps to establish a more inclusive society that will empower women and respect them for who they fully are.
The LEO project consisted of a series of activities that created a solid foundation for a society that promotes diversity and inclusion. The project presented a true idea of feminism as it aimed to involve both genders equally and promote the importance of mutual collaboration. By actively involving both genders, we demonstrated how a society can flourish when everyone is given an equal chance to engage. Most importantly the project’s impact isn’t short-term but rather long-term which is being reflected through the active involvement of people who are eager to change the community for the better.
On account of this, project “LEO” (Leadership is for Everyone) was born in the early spring of 2022 out of a desire to achieve gender equity, which includes boosting women’s leadership and involving men in the process.
This project brought together four organizations from Albania, Italy, Lithuania, and Bosnia and Herzegovina, all aiming to overcome key obstacles to gender equality. Throughout the two years, the LEO project has come a long way as it has contributed to building a more inclusive society.
Throughout this year, we have successfully organized five networking events that have given young people a platform to discuss topics that are often considered taboo in our society, such as femicide, mental health, and sexuality. Due to the open dialogue that took place at these events, young people felt more empowered to raise awareness and take action towards addressing these pressing issues. Not only did these events provide young people to connect but they also hosted successful and inspiring female leaders who motivated young people to break off the shackles of patriarchal society and fight for the right values. Young people found these events refreshing as they don’t have enough opportunities to network with successful leaders from various backgrounds and learn more about true models of our society.
Talking about the lack of opportunities, how could we forget the lack of adequate internship opportunities for young women who are having trouble entering the labor market and making a name for themselves in the industry? That’s exactly where the project ”LEO” came into the picture! In just two months our interns made a significant impact on the work structure by fighting gender-based prejudices, and changing the labor market for the better! Our interns have had a broad variety of duties that challenged them and helped them grow in the professional field. They proved their competencies with their creativity, professionalism, and seriousness. We broke every narrative and set the bar high with our Career Fairs which enabled young people to find career opportunities and connect with representatives from the labor market.
The job shadowing opportunity was revolutionary as it provided young women to travel, learn, and acquire professional experience. It was truly a perfect opportunity that enabled them to crate memories that will last forever. They got the opportunity to broaden their horizons and break the barriers across Europe!
The LEO project journey was beautiful. We broke barriers, inspired people, and showed that leadership is for everyone! Most importantly, we stayed true to its vision and promoted the importance of female empowerment both for men and women. The story isn’t over and it will never be, as we will continue to raise awareness and promote the importance of equal opportunities for all!
More about LEO project:
Women’s empowerment is a prerequisite for gender equality, according to the CoE Gender Equality Strategy 2018-2023. Even when girls demonstrate leadership abilities or hold positions of power, the world fails to make them feel good because the mind model that we have is gendered “male.” As a result, when girls adopt such a model, claiming that leaders are bold and make difficult decisions, they may experience cognitive Men outnumber women in leadership positions in every sector of the world, including business, nonprofits, government, education, medicine, the military, and religion This gender gap, often referred to with the metaphor “glass ceiling”, represents one of the most critical challenges to achieve gender equity and allow equitable working opportunities to all genders
The project aims to enhance women’s leadership, develop NFE resources for youth workers and young people, promote men’s involvement in women’s empowerment, and strengthen the synergies between youth work and the labor market.
And specific call’s thematic areas:
- inclusion of young people with fewer opportunities;
- empowerment/engagement / employability of young people;
- anti-discrimination and gender equality;
LEO project efficiently contributes to the global effort to achieve gender equity and meets the EU Gender Equality Strategy Key Actions 2020-2025 (challenging gender stereotypes, boosting women’s economic empowerment, and ensuring equal opportunities in the labor market). Moreover, the project addresses many of the general and specific call’s objectives, ensuring its quality and relevance.