Supporting young people in rural regions of Serbia

Project description

Title: Prospects for Young People in Rural Areas in Serbia
Commissioned by: Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Serbia
Lead executing agency: Ministry for Youth and Sports​​​​​​​
Overall term: 2021 to 2024

Vier junge Frauen in traditionellen ostserbischen Trachten.


In Serbia’s rural regions, young people are unable to reach their full potential in society. They have few opportunities to help to shape their political, social, economic and cultural environment. In many cases, young people are not interested in socio-political processes, or even distrust them. Two thirds of young Serbs do not believe that conditions in society will improve. It is estimated that half of young people in employment only have part-time or short-term jobs, rather than employment which reflects their level of education and training. There is thus little prospect of improving their income. In addition, micro-enterprises and small and medium-sized businesses often lack the expertise needed to identify new business areas and tap into markets, as well as the means to develop young people’s skills in these areas.

This often results in young people migrating to the cities and abroad. Various factors affect the subsequent reintegration prospects of those returning from abroad. Roma, in particular, face significant challenges in terms of their economic and social reintegration.


The economic and socio-cultural prospects of young people – including returnees from abroad and the cities – have improved in the pilot regions in rural areas.



The project seeks to improve the conditions for young people to actively shape their environment.

To achieve this, a young peoples’ fund is being set up to support their inclusive participation in society in the pilot communities.

The project also advises young people, including returnees, on diversifying income in rural regions, and encourages them to network with one another. It implements formats which improve the formal participation of young people in local policy-making and implementation.

Last update: January 2022

Brot mit Aufstrich (traditionelles südserbisches Rezept)