All Voices

  • Elsa Nilaj
    Elsa Nilaj
    Currently residing in Mumbai, India

    ELSA NILAJ interviewed by VANESSA VILLARREAL May 1st, 2015 Los Angeles, California & Mumbai, India   Narrator Elsa Nilaj is an Albanian fashion designer that was born on September 4th, 1988 in Malësia e Madhe. She now currently resides in Mumbai, India alongside her husband, Vishal Sudarshanwar. Elsa Nilaj has had a love for fashion…

  • Pjeter Vukaj
    Pjeter Vukaj
    Currently living in Shkodra, Albania

    PJETER VUKAJ interviewed by VANESSA VILLARREAL March 12th, 2015 Los Angeles, California & Shkodra, Albania Narrator Pjeter Vukaj is an Albanian artist that was born on August 3rd, 1965 in Malësi e Madhe. He has been living, working and exhibiting his artwork in Shkodra, Albania since the Nineties. He has enjoyed writing and creating art…

  • Flurim Aliu
    Flurim Aliu
    Currently living in Atlanta, Georgia

    ***The following story —”The Mystery Man” by Flurim Aliu— is not an official Albanian Voices article. It was written for Dr. Georgie Gordon-Smith at Georgia Gwinnett College and submitted on 14 September 2013. The views expressed in this story are entirely those of its author and do not represent the views of the Albanian Voices or any of its…

  • Elson Farka
    Elson Farka
    Currently Living in Tirana, Albania

    ELSON FARKA interviewed by VANESSA VILLARREAL On January 26th, 2015 in Los Angeles, California & Tirana, Albania Narrator Elson Farka was born on March 18th, 1994. He grew up in Laç, Albania but now lives in the capital, Tirana. He is the youngest of three children. He is enrolled in a general nursing program at a university in…

  • Krisela Karaja
    Krisela Karaja
    Currently living in Tirana, Albania

    ***The following two stories – “Krisi, 5, Ready For Shkollë, August 1997” and “Krisela, 23, Pendululating on Lori’s Bathroom Window Ledge, December 2014” – are not official Fulbright Program articles. The views expressed in these stories are entirely those of their author and do not represent the views of the Fulbright Program, the U.S. Department…

  • Arijanita Gashi Qabiq-Kline
    Arijanita Gashi Qabiq-Kline
    Currently living in Kosovo

    My Story: Kosovo’s Independence Day As Kosovo’s Independence Day approaches, I sit and wonder, how can I describe the best day of my life? I remember it was February 17th, 2008 when my heart was feeling both sorrow and happiness for different reasons. I felt sad to the point that I was close to tears…

  • Milkjor Palaj
    Milkjor Palaj
    Currently living in Los Angeles

    MILKJOR PALAJ interviewed by VANESSA VILLARREAL January 18th, 2015 Los Angeles, California Narrator Milkjor Palaj was born on January 23rd, 1988. He grew up in a small village outside of Shkodra, Albania, called Shirq. He is the eldest of three children and his parents, who both are farmers, set strong examples of hard work throughout…

  • Marsilda Bialczak
    Marsilda Bialczak
    Currently living in Connecticut

    My name is Marsilda Bialczak and I am a student at the University of Connecticut (UConn, Storrs, CT), majoring in Marketing. I am also an active member of the Albanian Student Association (ASA) at UConn. On May 2014, I started a fundraiser for my dear friend Olsi Alushaj, a 25-year-old from Fier, Albania. He suffers from Becker…

  • Dr. Doni
    Dr. Doni
    Reaction to Albania/Serbia Game October 2014

    This story was submitted anonymously to our website in reaction to the events that took place at the Albania vs. Serbia European Cup 2016 Qualifying Match on October 14th, 2014. “I am sorry to be an Albanian” This is what one might think after UEFA-s decision to reward the aggression and punish the victim! Yet, one…

  • Drilon Xhelili
    Drilon Xhelili

    This is a legend that has been told for many generations in the Albanian community. This time, the story is told by Drilon Xhelili. The title of this story is “1 Word 1 Lira” (lira is a coin used in the Ottoman Empire) and this is an old story that has been passed down by…

  • Arben Duraku
    Arben Duraku
    Currently living in Oslo, Norway

    My name is Arben Duraku.  I am 17 years old and I live in Oslo, Norway. I have been disabled all my life and I want to share my story. I was born in Prishtina, Kosovo in 1997; one year before the war started. Back then, we lived in a town called Stanofc, in the…

  • Salë Marku’s Story
    Salë Marku’s Story
    Anonymous Source

    For 30 years (1839 – 1869) Salë Marku was made famous for standing up to the Ottoman Empire in Istanbul by Hajredin Pasha, who lost twelve thousand soldiers fighting against Dibran soldiers at the outfall of Radika. Here are two brief stories that are still told about him today.   Once someone asked Salë Marku: -What are…

  • Ancient Legend: “The Tale of the Eagle”
    Ancient Legend: “The Tale of the Eagle”
    Anonymous Source

    This legend was sent to us from a young man in Macedonia. He wishes to remain anonymous as does the source of this story, which is his entire family for generations. This shows how Albanian oral history is passed down and guarded very carefully.  A young boy was hunting in the mountains. An eagle flying…

  • Angela Kalaj
    Angela Kalaj
    Currently living in Detroit, Michigan

    “When most people think of Albanians, they think of poverty and violence. However, I stand here before you as a 14-year old female Albanian saying that we are passionate people that just want to be successful.”

  • Gina Vuljaj
    Gina Vuljaj
    Currently living in Detroit, Michigan

    “Montenegro Visit One early morning I was asleep.  It was around 4 or 5 in the morning and all I heard were people talking in the living room. At first, I didn’t know what it was, so I just ignored it and went back to sleep.  A few minutes later, my mom said, “Get up, we’re…

  • Sokrat (Socrates) A. Bufi
    Sokrat (Socrates) A. Bufi
    Currently living in Atlanta, Georgia

    How does being Albanian give you an advantage in the United States? “I think it helps in a fundamental way. At freshman orientation at Georgia Tech, we were told two things: “Look to your right, then look to your left. One of you won’t make it” and “Most of you will graduate in 5 years.” …

  • Gent Ymeri
    Gent Ymeri
    Currently living in Preshevë

    “This is a photo that was taken near the Grand Hotel in Prishtina, Kosovo on the 30th of August, 1990. The man in the photo is named Faik Rexhepi from Preshevo and he is my cousin. He was demonstrating to show his loyalty to the land of Kosovo as an Albanian.  He said to the crown: “Ky është Atdheu im, përtej…

  • Anjeza Angie Gega
    Anjeza Angie Gega
    Currently living in Los Angeles, California

    “Being born and raised in a third world country has been a blessing in disguise. Because we struggled to make ends meet, we learned that happiness is not having everything. When we were hurt and felt lonely, I found music and dance. While the world was so tied up in dictatorship and control, we emerged fast in…

  • Albanian-American male (anonymous)
    Albanian-American male (anonymous)
    Currently living in Las Vegas

    “Someone asked me today how much I love Albania. This was the only response I could come up with: ‘I would suffer the worst torture man could think of in order to see Albania’s borders restored to their rightful places. For every grain of sand that anyone tries to take from us, I would suffer torture a thousand…

  • Donika Qelaj
    Donika Qelaj
    Currently living in Canada

    “I am 17 years old and I have traveled to Kosovo 3 times on my own. Being born in Kosovo I have always felt a deep connection to my culture and land. Whenever I am in my home country I feel like I’m in the place where I belong. I went to school for two…

  • Flakron Shkodra
    Flakron Shkodra
    Product Manager at Asseco-see in Kosovo

    English: “My name is Flakron Shkodra, I am 29 years old and I live in Kosovo. I believe this project is an outstanding idea of promoting cultural tolerance all over the world, this time targeting Albanians. Since it’s not politically motivated, I firmly believe it will contribute to the world, in that of seeing Albanians from the eyes…

  • Miranda Fetahu
    Miranda Fetahu
    Currently living in Houston, Texas

    “My parents grew up in Kosovo my father with 3 sisters and 3 brother making a total of 7 kids, he was raised in Verban with a noble father who like most made money from farming. The children assisted in farming and chore work while they weren’t in school.My mother grew up with 2 younger…

  • Sarah
    Sarah
    Currently living in Germany

    Ashley’s translation: “I speak fluent Albanian and can read well. I do not write so well and I make spelling mistakes, so I want to write this in German.  I want to tell the world more about the life of an Albanian family in a foreign country, as well as how they get are percieved by the foreign…

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