Advisor on planning and development in Pristina

After 20 years in the police, Jasmin, 42, wanted to take on new challenges. Off the top of her head she contacted CIVPOL and answered an advertisement. After that everything went very quickly. “As a precaution, my deployment was initially fixed for six months. I would never have imagined that I would end up spending a year and a half in Kosovo!”

Jasmin joined EULEX (European Union Rule of Law Mission) as a planning and development adviser for the Kosovo police in October 2009. She soon found herself taking on new responsibilities. 

A variety of tasks 

First she became head of public security, then in April 2011 she became the coordinator for the development programme for Kosovo. “I was responsible for the coordination and quality control of the implementation of development programmes within my department. I also provided technical and tactical support for the planning of proactive and reactive police operations. I was also responsible for ensuring the smooth operational running of the national elections, evaluating international police officers and giving anti-corruption courses for new members of EULEX.”

Developing new skills

Jasmin also had the opportunity to take part in a number of training courses in which she deepened her knowledge of management and administration. “I started out as a simple policewoman and then became a specialist in planning and management of projects. People showed trust in me, she says. This is probably the most valuable aspect of the whole experience.”

And on the personal level? “Once I had got over the initial cultural shock in the first few days, I found a country that was full of contrasts. I went skiing in the mountain region of Peja in winter and went swimming in the Serb enclave of Gracanica in the summer. I found the population to be very liberal and open. There was a huge solidarity among the team. It wasn't that easy to return to Switzerland. It took me some time to get my bearings again.”

Expert advice

  • Find accommodation as soon as possible so that you feel at home
  • Respect the local cultural codes
  • Keep up regular contacts with your family and friends
  • Plan for a few weeks of holidays before returning to work in Switzerland