President Jahjaga’s speech at the launch of the “Look after ME” campaign

President of the Republic of Kosovo, Mrs. Atifete Jahjaga, took part today at the launch of the “Look after ME” campaign, organised by the SOS Children’s Villages of Kosovo, in Prishtina.

At the speech held on this occasion, President Jahjaga said:

Honourable Minister Rašić,
Honourable Ms. Novobrdaliu, MP
Honourable Mrs. Gad,
Honourable participants,
Ladies and Gentlemen;

I have the pleasure to be with you today at the launch of “Look after ME” campaign, which aims awareness raising within society for the importance of the family as society’s foundation and for the increase of the well-being of children within the same family.

Allow me to begin by recognising the contribution of the local and international organisations and of all advocates, who with continuous dedication and endeavour for years have helped the protection and safeguarding of the position of children and the family in our society, in this new and fully inclusive Kosovo which we are striving to build.
But above all, I would like to thank all of you here present, who by showing up demonstrate your support for this awareness raising campaign, which puts the spotlight on our engagements, both institutional and as a society, upon child care, their well being and the guarantee for oportunities and necessary environment, in order for them to grow with all necessary preconditions required for them to show their full potential in the future.

Child’s wellbeing and success is closely related to the family, the love and dedication offered to them in such an environment. For many, this is a common thing, expressed routinely during the daily care the child receives.

But, during these transition years, faced by new problems and phenomena, not each child has been offered parental care and love. Not every child has a mother or a father. Not every child has a family or home.

Last December, on the night when the year’s turn, I did spend some time with the children of the SOS village orphanage, to express the institutional support for the orphans and to express my personal dedication towards the right of each member of our society for a dignified life. Dignified life is based upon the values which we not only aspire as a society and as a state, but which we aspire to make tangible for each resident of Kosovo, every single day.

During this period, while we are building the state of Kosovo as a place of great oportunities, and when our attention is drawn in greater extent towards drafting of the legislation which ensures the democratic functioning of the state in one hand, and solving of the political problems of the past on the other, we must not forget to care for and help what remains the central value of our society, without which even our own existence would be brought into question- the family.

Hence, it is the family, as a concept and as a need, whose foundations we must strengthen. Because only by strengthening the concept of the family we will be strengthening each one of its members. Because only by reducing the pressure on mothers and fathers, we will be reducing the possibility for them to abandon their child.

Only by professionalization of our social services, we will lower the level of the troubles for the parents prevent the expulsion of children from family environment.

We need to do this for our children, for the future of Kosovo.

Honourable participants,

When Hilary Clinton, former US State Secretary and a great friend of ours, was the First Lady of the United States,   had stated that to raise healthy, happy child, who is full of hope, requires a family, an army of educators, community leaders, doctors and policemen. It requires all of us. To raise a child, requires the engagement of a whole society.

Today these word sound truer than ever. Our engagement for the protection of the family and for the care for the children of this society must be unsparing. Investment in and creation of opportunities for each child is a mission of ours.