- Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM)
- November 2011
In two of its components, the project was fighting an uphill battle to get the attention of potential partners. The first component concerned Roma political parties, and, the second, municipal government and cooperation with the Equality Commissions (committees) of the municipal councils. The lack of interest by these partners highlights the absence of effective political representation of Roma and their interests in a “patron-client” political system, where parties do a poor job of representing the priorities of their constituencies, or of responding to their concerns. The parties saw no benefits in opening themselves to cooperation with an NGO which they did not trust. There seems to be little interest on the part of local government units in committing resources to Roma issues, and Roma tend to be invisible in local decision-making. The work supported by the project in two of the three municipalities was useful, but had no impact in changing the disposition of local government towards Roma and Roma women’s organizations.