GSL – Leadership for local change


Last month, in the period between 21.01.2013 and 02.02.2013, our volunteers Elena Markova and Maja Trajkova were participating in a training for young leaders “Leadership for local change” in Niš, Serbia, organized by the Club for Youth Empowerment 018 (KOM 018) in cooperation with GSL International, USA and Roma association “Prokuplje”, from Prokuplje, Serbia.


The aim of this training was to teach us how to write a business plan and gain skills for public speech. Each of us got to write a project/business plan concerning a problem in his/her community, so overall, we had 12 individual projects to present at the end.


We were a group of 13 young people – leaders to be – from Serbia, Macedonia, Bulgaria and Turkey. With help of our trainers Mary Terry, representative of GSL International, USA and Salin Salijević, KOM 018, Serbia, at the end we presented our projects in front of representatives from Balkan Trust for Democracy – a potential sponsor to fund the implementation of our projects for local change.



It was really empowering to work on a training like this. It gives you the opportunity to think of the whole picture, what will you change and what needs to be changed and how to implement it successfully in your local community.



Talking with Sanja Tosic, Mary Terry and Salin Salijević, experienced workers with youth, really gives a way to the idea you have. It actually contributes to your willingness to start taking initiative and making young people understand that every idea they have can become true.

Elena and Maja:

Being the second generation of this kind of training in Serbia is really relieving. Meeting those people at the end of the training and hearing that most of them actually implemented their projects was very empowering.


Working with all the participants, those incredible people, for two weeks, not only taught us how to write a business plan but also how to share our knowledge and experiences. The whole group became a family and we created friendships that hopefully will last for a lifetime. Having that kind of teamwork and connection between every singe participant in a group of 15 people is extraordinary.


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