European Youth For Development
Taking place in a crucial year for global development, the European Development Days (EDDs) gathered participants from around the world, representing 1,200 organisations, to discuss how to promote sustainable growth and cooperation. Europe’s leading forum on development cooperation, which took place in Brussels on 3rd and 4th June, also represented this year the flagship event of the European Year for Development.
Speaking at the opening of the EDDs, President of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz, declared the presence of the leaders from the European Institutions at the conference a testament to the importance of the challenges to be addressed.
Kicking off the discussion at European Development Days on 3rd June was the session, “Millennium youth: Young People Engaging in the Sustainable Development Agenda 2015-2030”. In collaboration with World Vision and SOS Children’s Villages, the European Youth Forum supported the event, with Board Member, Bérénice Jond, moderating the discussion. Joining a panel of 12 youth representatives was the UN Envoy for Youth, Ahmad Alhendawi, along with Prime Minister of Latvia, Laimdota Straujuma, and MEP Linda McAvan.
The discussion was fueled by the concerns and issues raised by the youth representatives, all within the context of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Young people are disproportionately affected by many of the problems on the post-2015 agenda, including poverty, unemployment, education and conflict, and so it was essential to encourage meaningful dialogue with leaders from international, national and European levels.
The next day the Youth Forum co-hosted a brainstorming session with SOS Children’s Villages on “Decent work: securing a decent future for all young people”. The informal session, bringing together experts, policy makers and youth and development organisations heard introductions on the importance of quality jobs for young people from the Youth Forum, as well as testimony from a 18 year old looking for a job and interventions from the European Commission and the private sector. Participants then brainstormed the key messages to do with decent work for all young people that they want to see in the SDGs.
The Youth Forum was pleased to be able to be involved in these important discussions at the EDDs and hopes that the outcomes will have a real impact on the post-2015 agenda and that young people truly have their voices heard in the process.
'Millennium youth': Young people engaging in the universal sustainable development agenda 2015-2030: https://eudevdays.eu/topics/millennium-kids-europe-and-global-south-0