Identifying the needs of the young generations to identify the best direction for Europe’s future. It is the objective of European institutions ahead of the next EP elections and the purpose of the European Youth Event that will take place in Strasbourg May 9-11. “Ever since its creation, the EU has always been a work in progress, evolving constantly as time passes by – states a EYE communiqué -. Moving into the 21st century, we are faced with new obstacles and challenges to overcome and the decisions taken at the EU level today will have a profound impact on the opportunities available to Europeans tomorrow”. Starting anew after the crisis. Six years after the financial downturn that plunged the world in the worst economic crisis since the 1930s, European economies are showing timid signs of improvement. However, youth unemployment rates are still high, which ever more often call into question the credibility – and the very future – of the EU. Recurring questions, according to Eye promoters, are linked to financial sector regulations; to values underlying tomorrow’s future; how to handle the problem of integration and create a stronger European identity to counter euro-scepticism. But one of the most recurring criticisms regards an alleged want of democratic legitimacy. Ensuring participation. The 2014 European Youth Event envisions over 30 activities on questions related to the future of the EU. “It will be an important event to give a voice to young people ahead of the elections”, said Johanna Nyman from Eye. “We must provide areas for young people, to enable them to be actively involved in social and political life, especially at this time of crisis”. “We must ensure that it is not an isolated event”, said the young woman from Finland. “It should be one of many occasions to listen to the expectations of young people, and seek an answer” on the part of Community institutions and member States. At present, several thousand people from European countries have asked for information and registration in the youth forum scheduled for the coming month (for information: www.europarl.europa.eu). The help of social media. The Parliament, its partners, as well as numerous schools, universities, youth organizations from all over Europe will hold workshops and role-playing games in order to understand how young people see the Europe of tomorrow on the occasion of Eye debates. For those who cannot attend in person, the European Parliament provides the possibility of following the event via streaming. Through their pc or tablets, participants will thereby have the possibility of posting questions on Twitter and take part in the debates due to take place in Strasbourg. Moderators in the workshop will then select the best questions posted online and bring them up during the discussion-time. Large screens inside and outside the Parliament building in Strasbourg will screen the live streaming of the meetings and debates, uploaded also on Twitter and Instagram. Giving voice to the next generations. For three days the European Parliament will provide young people with the possibility of giving an active contribution to Europe’s future. “The European Parliament will become a forum to discuss issues of interest for young people – said President Martin Schulz -. My colleagues and I will listen to their ideas and share them in the next legislature of the European Parliament”. “Make your voice heard, make the difference”, said Schulz, sending a message to European youths.
Appointment from May 9 to 11 in Strasburg for The European Youth Event