It is 1999 and some young Italian volunteers, coordinated by Caritas Italy, leave for Macedonia to help the Kosovar refugees fleeing from Milošević’s ethnic cleansing. Among them are Massimo Mazzali and Cristina Giovanelli who decide to stay in these tortured territories after the war to help the Kosovar people with the reconstruction.
A specific event transformed their temporary experience into a lifestyle choice. One day Massimo and Cristina meet a half-abandoned toddler in a dog’s bed. They immediately decide to take him with them and to stay in Kosivo to create a facility dedicated to welcoming minors.
The facility has grown ever larger, and in 2014 it became a real home, still managed by Massimo and Cristina, who live there with their family. A house that was also strongly desired by Valter Baldaccini, who contributed to its construction, although he was, unfortunately, not present at its inauguration.
Today the House of Leskoc is a permanent home for more than twenty minors, and over 100 poor families are also monitored and supported. The whole project is possible thanks to the Regional Delegation of Umbria Caritas, and to many organizations and friends who have supported this extraordinary experience.
This was not the first project with Leskoc House for the Valter Baldaccini Foundation. In fact, in 2016, thanks to the On the job training and development in Kosovo project and the generosity of many friends, we managed to donate ten dairy cows, a milking machine and a pasteurizer to the organization. These items are essential for starting economic activities linked to milk processing, an activity that offers young Kosovars associated with the House to train and have a job.
In fact, Massimo and Cristina established the NGO Shoqata and Agrikultur Sociale Alakuqan (CSZ) in 2003 to create concrete job opportunities for the orphaned children (now adults) living at the House and for the Kosovar people living in conditions of extreme poverty. This organization manages the land and a farm that allows these people to work and support themselves by cultivating barley, corn, and peas, raising cattle, doing light carpentry, and making bread, sweets, and dairy products.
Based on CSZ’s experience and a careful analysis of the needs of the territory, it was determined that, at present, Kosovo’s cattle production only minimally covers the needs of the country and, therefore, meat is mainly imported. This is a sector of the Kosovar economy that needs to be strengthened in order to create concrete job opportunities.
Hence the project for the construction of a new barn. The building next to the existing barn will be renovated and a structure will be created to raise forty calves.
A barn means work for many young people, in fact 10 people will be involved in the renovation work and when it is active, 8 young people will be hired to raise livestock.
Find out how the work is progressing
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