STREHA supports the integration of as many as possible LGBTI people, in a free, open, equal and inclusive society.

Since its establishment in December 2014, STREHA has been a source of hope and strength for Albanian LGBTI+ youth.  It emerged as the first non-publicly run residential center dedicated to providing sanctuary and support to LGBTI+ individuals in Southeast Europe. 

The shelter was initially started as a pilot project of two NGOs, Aleanca LGBTI and United Pro LGBT Cause, supported by the tireless work and contribution of enthusiastic activists and early-day allies of the LGBTI+ community in Albania. It marked the first institutionalized response to the hostile environment that surrounded and keeps affecting heavily the LGBTI+ community in Albania.

Its opening back in 2014 represented an important turning point in Albania’s LGBTI+ rights battle.

The motivation for STREHA’s creation reflects the terrible reality faced by Albania’s LGBTIQ community, in a country where strong homophobic and transphobic beliefs are still prevalent to this day and where the majority of LGBTI+ people have experienced domestic abuse and discrimination. Locked doors, intercepted texts, and familial rejection portray a bleak picture for many queer individuals, highlighting the critical need for safe havens such as STREHA.


December 2014 – Streha starts as a pilot project of two LGBT+ organisations.

November 2015  – Streha becomes an independent NGO (non-governmental organisation).

May 2021 – Streha’s operational standards recognized nationwide as residential standards for LGBTI+ shelters by Ministerial Decree.

June 2021 – Streha gets featured as one of the regional innovative case studies from IRIS Network in the Western Balkans for its work during the Covid-19 pandemic.

July 2021 – Streha awarded as on of the best-practices in Europe to help end youth homelessnes by FEANTSA.

December 2022 – Streha gets awarded with the  ‘Human Rights Prize 2022’ by the French National Consultative Commision on Human Rights

With the turning of the years, STREHA evolved as Albania’s sole refuge, providing shelter, protection, and empowerment to LGBTI+ youth navigating the stormy reality of identity and societal acceptability.

Articles featuring our work


The first LGBT Shelter opened in Tirana – Historia ime

Albania gay rights groups open first LGBTI shelter in Balkan region | Gazeta Koha Jone

USAID Helps Open 1st Shelter in Balkans for LGBT Community | Archive – U.S. Agency for International Development


Promoting human rights of LGBTI citizens in Albania – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)


Albanian LGBTs From Region Find Shelter In Tirana | Balkan Insight


Albania’s LGBTQ Activists Are Transforming Their Community (nbcnews.com)


A Place to Call Home – Kosovo 2.0 (kosovotwopointzero.com)


17 Practices to help end Youth Homelessness in Europe (Feantsa)

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