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Alexandra N Muntean
Member since January 10, 2017
  • 7 Posts
  • Age 20

European Youth Event 2018, Strasbourg, France - Dare to participate!

European Youth Event 2018, Strasbourg, France - Dare to participate!

It’s still alive. The feeling of belonging to something bigger than us is still there. What am I talking about? Feeling European.

It still exists in the heart of young enthusiasts ready to take over the world with their ideas, despite the identity crisis we are dealing with, the crisis the EU is dealing with.

I can assure you there are at least 9000 people who relate to this feeling I am talking about. The same 9000 who took over the European parliament last weekend and spoke up on what is important to them and about the future of their European Union, their Europe.

They raised awareness on important issues and causes such as youth participation, education, integration, the digital revolution, climate change and human rights. They presented our worries to politicians about the negative effects on plastic on our environment, refugees and their situation in Europe, about the absence of equal opportunities, especially in the case of education, about how social media might revolutionize or affect our lives, about how climate change is no “fake news” and about how youth are not being involved enough in decision making processes, even when deciding about their future.

To all these issues they came up with creative solutions after a long and intense working process. They attended trainings and workshops to discover new cultures, new points of view, to create networks with other engaged youth and gain new skills. Young leaders and members of youth organizations then used all of these new instruments in firing debates and idea labs, resulting in incredible ideas to solve European and international conflicts, help the environment, improve education and update the actual status of the European Union.

Through all of this they evolved. I evolved. I did better, rediscovered and redefined myself in the European context. I have taken up a new role: an ambassador of the idea of the European Union. The role to make sure that peace is achieved, not only the absence of war, but the ability to overcome cultural, language and conflict barriers and work together, united by our diversity and not divided by it, for a better future for us and for Europe. I realized what the EU means to me, now more than ever, in times when the world is in despair, hopeless and fearful, disappointed and tired of being told that there is no solution to the problems that cause this situation, because there is one: youth.

Involving youth in the process of saving the world could make a difference and it will. This event proved it: 9000 motivated, talented, devoted young people with amazing expertise and experience in their branches, and came up with hundreds of ideas, proposals and resolutions on solving European and international issues, in just 2 days. Imagine what they could do with more young people involved and when given more responsibilities. All this was achieved by working together, not in national interest, but connected by their common European identity. We are Europe. Youth is the EU.

The world’s population consists of more than 50% young people and their voices should be heard. So let’s hear them out. Hear us out. We have the right to speak up on what we believe in and we will, because as simple as that, we are the future and the future is ours, and we want to shape it our way. Did you ever think about the fact that maybe, we have all the solutions you have been looking for? Give us a chance to prove that to you.

Thank you EU for an amazing youth event, which empowered us, and for letting us see that our opinions do matter. We are the EYE 2018 and we have left our footprint on the European Union and hope to be able to do it again in 2 years. Maybe until then, we will finally have our seat at the table.

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