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2022 is the European Year of Youth, putting a spotlight on young Europeans and their important role in our society. But what does it mean in practice?

We often see politicians and decision-makers referring to youth as our future. The truth is, we are here right at this moment! To support our young people, we must act now.

The European Year of Youth has to go beyond promotional activities and bring a positive and long-lasting impact on young people's lives, today and in the future.

The EU declared 2022 the European Year of Youth as a recognition of the sacrifices that young people have made during the pandemic. It is an important milestone in acknowledging young people’s expectations, rights, and needs. Embedding real change requires legislation that specifically helps young people where they need it the most.

That's why we will push for creating sustainable and positive policy changes #ForYouthRights on your behalf. Follow us on our journey to achieve what young people want. So what is it?

youth beyond 2022

The European Year of Youth has to have a long-lasting positive impact on young people.

We want a #YouthTest - a youth impact assessment tool that the EU can use to make sure that all European legislative proposals have a positive impact on young people. Young people must be involved in this assessment. Read more here.

Unpaid internships have all but replaced paying entry-level positions, becoming a barrier that prevents young people from finding dignified employment. To pass this barrier, some can rely on their parent's finances, but many others are forced to give up on their dreams.

We call for a ban on unpaid internships across the EU so that young people are able to fulfill their potential and start their careers. More here.

better youth data

Young people are the backbone of Europe, but they are too often ignored or overlooked. We want to see a stronger focus on youth as a distinct group in policy-making, but that is not possible without better information.

  • Better data on young people across EU

The EU and the Member States should collect better statistical data on young people and their experiences. We are missing crucial information on age-based discrimination and the challenges youth face in their daily lives. This information must be disaggregated according to social factors, in order to expose disproportionate allocation of risks and privilege.

  • Focus on the transition from education to employment

Young people across the continent are struggling to find paying and dignified jobs. Yet, the EU has no updated information about the number of young people in unpaid internships or the number of years they work without a full employment contract.

young people at the centre of decision-making

Young people are engaged in political action across all aspects of life. Our democracies need to give space for young voices to come through.

  • Vote at 16

Voting is one of the most basic democratic rights. Coupled with strong citizenship education it gives young people the opportunity to shape the future and connect with others in their country and in the EU. Anyone 16 or older should have the right to vote!

  • Boost youth participation in decision-making processes

Democracy doesn’t end the day after the elections. Young people from all backgrounds, particularly those with fewer opportunities, should be able to engage in decision-making on a daily basis. The EU and governments should consult youth regularly, both online and offline, and take into account the outcomes of these consultations.

The Conference on the Future of Europe (CoFoE) represents a significant occasion for citizens, including young people, to share their vision of the future they want to see. The conference must end with a binding mechanism to ensure the EU is following up on citizens' recommendations.

the 25% project

We are the 25%. We are the unheard, the unrepresented — young people. But our voices have much more power than we know. Together, we can change the world, starting with making ourselves heard.

The 25 Percent was created by and for young people that are determined to make a change. Be part of the movement! Share with us your ideas for a brighter future, and we’ll represent them at the Conference on the Future of Europe. Share your idea now.

Are you wondering what will happen with all the ideas you share? They will be read one by one, analysed, and summarised in a report, which we will then bring to the attention of policymakers around Europe!

the european youth capital

Boosting youth participation should be also happening on the local and regional levels. The European Youth Capital is a title awarded by the European Youth Forum designed to empower young people, boost sustainable youth participation, and strengthen our shared European identity.

Each year, a new city is given the chance to showcase its innovative ideas, projects, and activities that aim to amplify young voices and bring a new youth perspective to all aspects of city life.

This year, we support the European Youth Capital 2022 Tirana, Albania!

That's not all! This year, we want to inspire young people to become real change-makers by joining our fight #ForYouthRights ✨

The European Year of Youth is for all young people. That's why we want to bring everyone on board, including young people from rural areas and disadvantaged youth, Roma, migrant and LGBTQI+ communities.

Are you ready to make #OurYear a success?

share your event

Are you organising a youth event? Or are you looking for a youthful event to attend? 👀 Check out the official European Year of Youth map of events.

Yes, there is a new online space created to map youth activities of the year, all in one place 🔝

Your event can't be missed. Register it now, let Europe know about your work #ForYouthRights, give it more visibility & connect with more young people through this interactive map.

You can also go through all the events from across Europe and find the one that is happening close to you (or one that you can easily join online).