BUCHAREST, April 25, 2017 — Today the World Bank Office in Romania launched a call for applications for civil society organizations interested in strengthening the social inclusion of the Roma under a newly-established committee, called the Roma Sounding Board (RSB).
The RSB will consist of representatives from civil society organizations with expertise in the areas of social and economic inclusion of the Roma. The role of the RSB will be to identify areas for increased policy attention for the Roma, provide input from the perspectives of the Roma, and propose potential solutions to improve development outcomes and strengthen the social inclusion of the Roma.
The aim of this initiative will be to promote equal rights and the socio-economic inclusion of Roma, in particular women and girls, and to support the participation of the Roma in the political, social, and economic development of their communities.
“The World Bank launched this initiative cognizant of the fact that there’s a stronger need to understand the challenges facing Roma in Romania and create better interventions targeting their wellbeing and life chances,” said Elisabetta Capannelli, World Bank Country Manager for Romania and Hungary. “The Roma Sounding Board will be a platform where different voices will be heard and ideas will be put forward on how the World Bank and other interested partners can address issues of marginalization and improve inclusion for the Roma population.”
Supporting the Roma is a part of the World Bank’s strategic engagement on social inclusion which aims to help reduce poverty in the country and foster sustainable income growth for the bottom 40 percent of the population.
Despite some progress in recent years, a large share of the Roma population living in Romania, which was estimated to be between 6% to 12% of the population in 2010 according to Council of Europe data, remains poor and excluded from full participation in the country’s social and economic life. There is an increasing understanding that solutions for better interventions hinge on customized approaches and improved community involvement.
Civil society organization are invited to apply from April 25 to May 23, 2017. A total of eight national and eight local/regional civil society organizations will be selected to serve on the Roma Sounding Board for a period of eighteen months.
The inaugural meeting of the Roma Sounding Board will take place on June 7, 2017. Application materials and further details on the application process are available at the following link: http://www.worldbank.org/en/country/romania/brief/roma-sounding-board