Designing the future based on accurate statistics on households conditions.
Story by Leonora Aliu
Hats and T-shirts are on. The tablets have been placed in the bags too. It is half past eight in the morning and the team is ready to set off on a van to the first destination in the region of Prishtina – Fushë Kosova.
Here in Fushë Kosova, the five interviewers will start testing the questionnaires with tablets and collect data from households. Gyltene Osmani, 25 years old, from Ferizaj, is the first one to try to start with the interview. The first household refuses to participate. “It is okay, this happens in the field. We will continue with the next one and come back to this household another time during the day”, she says calmly as she continues to the second house. There, at the next household, where she is welcomed by the family members, who are ready to talk about the conditions which they live in. The lady of the house with her son and sister-in-law greet Gyltene and the interviewing team. After Gyltene identifies the most knowledgeable household member for interview, she begins with the first questionnaire.
© UNICEF/2019/L.Aliu. Gyltene Osmani and her team manager at the second household during the interview.
“My experience as a MICS6 interviewer has given me the opportunity to directly see the economic situation of Kosovo citizens,” Gyltene says.
“I hope institutions of Kosovo will develop targeted interventions and use the findings of this study. I am very grateful to MICS for giving me this opportunity,” she further adds, as she proceeds to the next house.
The first survey of Multiple Indicators Cluster Survey (MICS) for Kosovo was conducted in 2013-2014 by Kosovo Agency of Statistics. According to Child Rights Monitoring Specialist from UNICEF Kosovo Office, lack of up-to-date data on the situation of children in Kosovo is one of the key bottlenecks for effective policy making and budget allocation. “The evidence generated by 2019 MICS with general population and Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian communities will be instrumental to inform the strategic planning and progress reporting on Sustainable Development.”
A closer visit to the work being done in the field was paid this week by the Development Coordinator for United Nations in Kosovo, Ms Ulrika Richardson and Head of UNICEF Kosovo Office, Mr. Murat Sahin.
© UNICEF/2019/L.Aliu. Mrs. Ulrika Richardson, Development Coordinator of UNKT and Mr. Murat Sahin, Head of Office at UNICEF Kosovo during the field visit in Fushë Kosova.
After a few hours’ visit in Fushë Kosova and the opportunity to directly talk to household members there, Richardson evaluated the MICS survey as something vital in creating genuine policies that serve to tackle poverty in particular because it is based on data collected directly from citizens and for their needs.
“In order to combat poverty, we have to talk with families and go door to door to learn more about their situation. Only this way we can draft policies that will really have an effect in fighting poverty and increasing the welfare of children, women and men,” stated Richardson.
While according to Mr. Sahin good data are the foundation of good governance that protects and fosters the lives of children and youth. “Once MICS is completed by Spring of 2020, we will have statistically sound and internationally comparable data for the main social indicators for women, children and vulnerable and marginalized groups of population in Kosovo. MICS is essential to creating a strong basis for SDGs and strengthening investments and advocating efforts to develop human capital in Kosovo,” stated Sahin.
Note: This article was originally published in the UNICEF Kosovo Programme on 22 October, 2019.