OPDMK Advocates for the Participation of Women with Disabilities in Politics 

The Organization of Persons with Muscular Dystrophy of Kosovo (OPDMK) on May 7 in Prizren held its first informative session on the “Strengthening Women’s Participation in Politics” initiative.  

OPDMK is part of this four-year initiative, which is implemented by the Kosovo Women’s Network (KWN) along with Ruka Ruci organization, and the European Women Lawyers Association (EWLA), and is supported by the European Union (EU) Office in Kosovo.  

This meeting was attended by 21 female participants, including girls and women with disabilities, representatives from the Association of the Blind People and the Association of the Deaf, both from Prizren, as well as by the mothers of girls with disabilities.  

Director of OPDMK, Antigona Shestan while introducing this initiative, stated that KWN represents a strong supportive voice.  

“This initiative gives us high hope for girls and women with disabilities, this initiative helps us to continue the path where we left it. We will not be part of the politics, but we will be the ones that push politics forward”, she said.  

Whereas, Project Coordinator at KWN, Vesa Zatriqi, revealed the expected results from the implementation of this initiative.  

“Through this collaboration we aim to achieve gender equality. For us to have also women with disabilities as well as women from non-majority communities in decision-making process and in politics”, stated Zatriqi 

Further, Manager of the Handikos Center in PrizrenEgzona Hoxhaj, said that it is of a crucial importance for people with disabilities, especially for women with disabilities to fight for their rights.  

“It is a pity that when you have a meeting, the biggest concern is how to find a place which is easily accessible. Always advocate for the elevator to exist, for a wheelchair ramp to exist” she said. 

Administrator at one of the schools of SuharekaGanimete Morina, shared her experience with the participants.  

“Each day I have to face moving up to the second floor, but slowly they have started to help me every day, they are now accustomed to me, I have become part of them. They have also realized that we need access, wanting to do their utmost to provide access, and this not solely for me, but for everyone”, she said.  

Resmije Rrahmani, OPDMK, brought into a discussion that girls and women are generally discriminated, but girls and women with disabilities face a multiple discrimination. 

“Women with disabilities, especially those from rural areas should engage more in the decision-making process. It is important for us to vote for women, I believe that a woman in local and central assembly can understand us more than a man can understand us”, Rrahmani said.  

At the end, the participants agreed to cooperate as closely as possible with each-other in advancing the rights of women with disabilities.  

This meeting and this initiative is supported by the European Union (EU) Office in Kosovo. 

An information session within this initiative has also held the organization Ruka Ruci, for which you can read more HERE