Festival of EuropeOpen day 2012 in Brussels Esplanade Solidarnosc

EU: 2022 will officially be the European Year of Youth

The European Union is calling on its younger citizens to ‘regain control’ of their lives once the worst of the pandemic is over.

Confirmation has come from the EU that 2022 will be the European Year of Youth, whereby young citizens will be offered a range of activities and opportunities for personal growth and development.

To coordinate and launch these activities, the Commission will cooperate with the European Parliament, EU Member States, regional and local authorities as well as youth organisations and young citizens themselves.

Explaining the need to make 2022 the European Year of Youth, the Commission says that younger generations have suffered most during the past two years. Taking this further, the outbreak of the pandemic affected both their personal and professional development in numerous ways.

‘We want to make the voice of youth heard’

For this reason, the Commission now seeks to help young Europeans regain control of their lives by supporting and engaging them. More specifically, the European Year of Youth aims to fulfil four key objectives.

  • Renew positive perspectives for young people by highlighting the opportunities that arise from the green and digital transitions.
  • Support young Europeans who are from diverse and disadvantaged backgrounds, have fewer opportunities and are in vulnerable positions
  • Help young citizens gain a better understanding of the opportunities that are available to them – on EU, national, regional, and local levels.
  • Mainstream youth policy across all relevant union policy fields.

Although the European Year of Youth will take place in 2022, the Commission hopes that it will have a long-lasting impact and legacy. Mariva Gabriel, EU Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, said: “We understand the importance of putting young people in the spotlight and celebrate their resilience after two very challenging years. I invite all young Europeans to participate in the numerous engagements, initiatives and actions that we will launch as from January 2022.

“We want to make their voice heard and to inform the decisions we will take for their future. We want this Year to lead into concrete actions that will last well beyond 2022.”

The various activities and initiatives of the European Year of Youth will be supported by EUR 8 million from Erasmus+ and the European Solidarity Corps programmes. Details of the programme will be available soon on the EU Youth Portal.

Author: Simon Weedy

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