Ghent Takes European Youth Capital 2024 Title
Today, 18 November, Ghent was announced as the next winner of the European Youth Capital.
Ghent will hold the prestigious title in 2024 for one year, in tandem with the Belgian presidency of the EU, empowering its young citizens to take the lead in shaping their city and its future within Europe.
Ghent successfully won over the Youth Capital Jury with its commitment to put young people at the core of its democratic events and civic life, in line with Belgium’s recent decision to lower the voting age to 16 in the European elections. The winning proposal, ‘We Are The City’, emphasises the role of Ghent’s Youth Council as an official advisory body, alongside other regional and European youth partnerships and networks.
The European Youth Capital title is awarded every year by the European Youth Forum, the biggest platform for youth organisations in Europe.
Ghent Mayor, Mathias De Clercq, said:
We will use this title to elevate young people and let them shape the future of our city themselves.
Ghent Youth Representative, Antoon Denys, said:
The EYC 2024 title will empower us youngsters, from Ghent and all over Europe, to experiment and co-create an even better city.
European Youth Forum Board Member, Tom Matthew, said:
Congratulations to Ghent. We are thrilled to welcome this well deserved winner into the growing family of European Youth Capitals. Ghent embodies the values behind the European Youth Capital title - youth participation, empowerment and inclusion.
Every year, cities from across Europe apply for the title. This time, Ghent was selected from a shortlist of four finalist cities. The other finalists for EYC 2021 were (in alphabetical order):
In its proposal, Ghent committed, among other things, to engage more young people from diverse backgrounds and life situations, to make them active co-creators in city life. It will use the momentum created by the European Youth Capital to tackle structural challenges, including racism, discrimination and child poverty. It will also open three new shared Youth Spaces in 2024.
About the European Youth Capital (EYC)
The European Youth Capital title invites cities across the continent to rethink how they engage with and include young citizens. The European Youth Capital is an opportunity to showcase innovative ideas, projects and activities that aim to foster youth participation in cultural and educational programmes and democratic policy-making.
In order to win the title, EYC candidate cities follow an extensive application process, where shortlisted cities are selected by an independent jury composed of representatives from both institutions and organisations.
The city of Ghent is now the sixteenth winner of the title, which was first awarded to Rotterdam in 2009.
For the City of Ghent: Philippe Michiels | email@example.com
For the European Youth Forum: Rafael Shilhav | firstname.lastname@example.org | +32 490 11 36 76
Hannah Grieve | email@example.com
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