Representatives from nine National Youth Councils from the nine Baltic Sea countries gathered together between 07th and 09th of November in Stockholm to represent a youth perspective at the 07th Strategy Forum on the EUSBSR.
The European Union has four macro-regional strategies, one of which is the Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region. This years’ Strategy Forum that gathers over 1400 actors from different institutions is called: ”One Region. One Future”. Unfortunately, since the Strategy was adopted in 2009, this is the very first time that the 20 representatives from the youth organisations take part in this high level policy discussions.
Cooperation between the countries in the region is very important and necessary, but it can only be legitimate by having all actors included in the decision making and in the implementation process continually. The youth representatives from the National Youth Council of Sweden, Finland, Danmark, Estonia, Latvia, Lithania, Germany, Poland and Iceland agreed that the implementation of the following recommendations are necessary for starting the youth participation as a sustainable process in this, and in other European regions.
- National youth councils and their member organisations need to be included before, during and following up to each EU regional strategy forum, disregarding which EU macro regional strategy is in question
- National youth councils and their member organisations need to have the opportunity to participate at the strategy forums, in order to represent a marginalized but heterogeneous group in society and create a fair representation of the organised young people in their countries.
- National youth councils and their member organisations need to be able to affect policy areas and be a part of the horizontal cross-sectorial cooperations.
- National youth councils and their member organisations need to be able to get continuous and sustainable funding provided by the member states in order to have structured and systematic opportunities to meet, discuss and take decisions.
Participating in three panel discussions, among others, with the Prime-ministers of Sweden and Finland, our representatives highlighted that every decision that influences our lives, need to be taken together with us. As one of the workshops at the Forum says: ”Nothing about us, without us”, we are present and mainstreaming the youth perspective in most workshops. We truly hope that decision makers will make this Strategy Forum the start of a tradition of youth participation on this policy level.
For more information please contact:
LSU – Swedish Youth Organisations
EU Project Coordinator
LJP - National Youth Council of Latvia
President of LJP
LiJOT - Lithuanian Youth Council
Coordinator of International Affairs
PROM – Polish Council of Youth Organisations
Member of the board
DnK - The German National committee for international youth work
Chairperson of regional youth council of Schleswig Holstein
FNUF – Norden Assosiation Youth League Sweden
Member of the board
ENL – Estonian National Youth Council
Ungdomsorganisationer förändrar och förbättrar unga människors vardag. Att gemensamt driva en ungdomsorganisation ger unga en möjlighet till makt och resurser för att påverka sin egen omgivning. De är mötesplatser för över en halv miljon unga medlemmar i Sverige som genom sitt engagemang får unik kompetens och ett sammanhang för sina idéer. LSU samlar Sveriges ungdomsorganisationer för att vi gemensamt ska förbättra förutsättningarna för ungas organisering, i Sverige och i världen. Följ LSU:s arbete på Facebook och Twitter.