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Participation corner

Are you a young activist and want to acquire new skills, network with other young people and organise events and activities for your community?

The MEET project (Mobilise Europe = Engaging Together) is designed to engage young people in European democracy ahead of the European elections 2024. This is your opportunity to actively participate and shape the future.

The MEET project aims to:

  • Provide young activists with the tools and training they need to become more active in their democratic participation.

  • Create spaces where citizens from different backgrounds can connect with and learn from each other, acquire civic skills and learn more about the European Union and its role in their everyday lives.

  • Create opportunities for young people to enter in a dialogue with politicians ahead of the European elections.

Debating Europe

The first pillar of the MEET project is all about training for staff, focusing on disadvantaged youth inclusion, and empowering citizens with debating skills and critical thinking.

Stemming from the Conference on the Future of Europe (CoFoE), 8 regional debates will be organised by our member organisation, JEF Europe, focusing on the upcoming 2024 EU elections. Election related topics such as lowering the voting age to 16, bridging generational gaps in voting, and promoting diversity in politics will be vigorously debated.

  • JEF Italy: The media and the European Elections – what role does disinformation play?
  • JEF Spain: Equality and fair gender representation in politics – how to foster equality?
  • JEF France: The Conference on the Future of Europe – how does it shape the European Elections?
  • JEF Ireland: Vote16 – representing youth in European elections - 15 February 2024
  • JEF Hungary: Age and democracy – what is the difference between young and older voters? - 17 February 202
  • JEF Bulgaria: How to reach voters from disadvantaged backgrounds? - February 2024

Two more regional debates will be organised by The Assembly of European Regions (more information coming soon).

The 3 best competitors of each debate will then compete in a European level debate which will take place in Brussels in May 2024 (more information coming soon).

Broadening Europe

The second pillar of the project begun with The Youth Forum Academy, a three-day capacity building training for youth organisations which took place in June 2023 in Belgium. In July, we teamed up with PROM in Lublin, Poland, for a hands-on Events Management Training. Five insightful workshops have also taken place, focusing on how to organise Europe Participate Festivals. Finally, 15 Democracy festivals, spread across five regions – South, West, North, Central-East, South-East Europe – will act as hubs where citizens of all backgrounds will be able to connect, share, and discuss, making sure everyone's voice is heard.

Democracy festivals

Our 15 democracy festivals are events where different groups of people, including young, old, and marginalised communities, come together to share, learn and build ties. Interactive dialogues, panel debates, political discussions, art interventions, and other cultural festivities that will help everyone connect are just some of the activities taking place at the festivals. The democracy festivals are a chance to meet local decision makers and have your voice heard. Each festival is planed together with local partners to make sure the chosen topics are relevant to your community and that everyone's needs are met.

where will they take place?

The Democracy festivals were held throughout late 2023 and in 2024. All activities are in the local language of each area:

  1. Poland - Polish Council of Youth Organizations (PROM) - 30/04/2024, Katowice
  2. Romania - Romanian National Youth Council (CTR) - 06/04/2024, Ploiești
  3. Slovakia - Slovak Youth Council (RMS) - 20/11/2023, Democracy Festival, Lučenec
  4. Bulgaria - National Youth Forum of Bulgaria (NYF) - Democratic Mosaic: Civil Society Scene, 17/09/2023, Sofia
  5. Croatia - Croatian Youth Network (MMH) - 6-7/11/2023, Zagreb
  6. Slovenia - National Youth Council of Slovenia (MSS) - 21/06/2023, Adjovščina & 23/06/2023, Sežana & 19/09/2023, Logatec & 14/11/2023, Ljubljana
  7. Cyprus - Cyprus Youth Council (CYC) - 21/04/2024, Nicosia
  8. Italy - Italian Youth Council (CNG) - 20/04/2024, Parma
  9. Spain - Spanish Youth Council (CJE) & JEF Spain - 18/02/2024, Toledo & 06/04/2024, Madrid
  10. Ireland - National Youth Council of Ireland (NYCI) - 13-15/02/2024, Dublin & Cork
  11. Latvia - YOU+ - 03/11/2023, Liepāja & 27/11/2023, Valmiera & 16/02/2024, Līvāni
  12. Lithuania - Klaipeda Municipality - Start of the school year at the Democracy Festival, 1-2/09/2023, Klaipeda & Lithuanian Youth Council (LiJOT) - 7-13/10/2023 Marijampolė & Vilnius
  13. Austria - Austrian National Youth Council (ÖJV) - 29/04/2024, St. Pölten
  14. Belgium - Erasmus Student Network (ESN) - 12/02/2024, Ghent
  15. France - Old’Up - 03/02/2024, Paris

Shaping Europe

The third and final pillar of the MEET project offers you a chance to engage directly with policy makers. You will be able to participate via an interactive online platform, sharing your daily experiences living in Europe. You can also be part of democracy in action through local meet-ups with candidate MEPs in Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Ireland, Lithuania, Slovakia, and Slovenia leading up to the 2024 EU elections. And don't forget to take a look at our Intergenerational Declaration, drafted together with AGE, to reflect the common values, interests, and challenges shared by both the young and old populations.