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Hear my voice: youth advocacy in the wider Europe Young people respond to the Eastern Partnership


08 May 2009



Brussels, 8 May 2009 PRESS RELEASE: Hear my voice: youth advocacy in the wider Europe Young people respond to the Eastern Partnership From May 2nd to May 10th, AEGEE-Brussels and Young EU Russia have welcomed 31 young people from Russia, Belarus, The Czech Republic, Poland, Azerbaijan and Ukraine inviting them to debate on youth advocacy in light of the launch of the Eastern Partnership and the upcoming EU-Russia Troika talks in Kaliningrad. The members of the Permanent Representative Missions of Belgium, Czech Republic and the Russia Federation towards the EU delivered presentations and hosted round table discussions, workshops and Q&A sessions for participants. The objective was to empower youth with advocacy skills, which they can use to represent their interests in a diplomatic way to the relevant authorities back home or in other parts of Europe. “At present, we see a lack of common understanding in the wider Europe on issues like energy security, environment and civil society,” says Thijs van Welij, of AEGEE-Brussel/Bruxelles. “Therefore it’s important that these young Europeans from outside the EU seek participation in a constructive dialogue with both their own governments and the European Institutions on policies that affect their future.” “I was quite surprised that people we met in Brussels know a lot about Belarus and actually care about our country and its future perspectives,” said Yahor Haurylau, reflecting on the Eastern Partnership. “We do hope this is a start of intensifying dialogue and cooperation with Belarusian citizens, and that funding will reach civil society projects and enable more youth to share ideas for EU-Belarusian cooperation.” Content organizer Axana Pozdnyakova from “Young EU Russia” enjoyed the multilingual capacity of the participants, which facilitated easy exchange of views and experiences. AEGEE (Association des Etats Généraux des Etudiants de l’Europe / European Students’ Forum) is a student organisation that promotes co-operation, communication and integration amongst young people in Europe. As a non-governmental, politically independent and non-profit organisation, AEGEE is open to students and young professionals from all faculties and disciplines – today it counts 15.000 members, active in more than 250 university cities in 43 European countries. AEGEE-Bruxelles/Brussel is the Brussels-based local antenna of the network and has over 25 active members of all nationalities. Young EU-Russia is an independent non-for-profit organization, aiming to improve the current cooperation and dialogue between the young people from the EU and Russia (as well as countries from Eastern Europe). In the framework of its activities, the association tries to actively involve young people in the current cooperation processes between the EU and Russia, in order to give them opportunity to participate in the development of the future for their countries. Crossing borders, Chasing New Horizons - European Pathfinders to youth representation in Europe received financial support from JINT, and being organized in the framework of the Corporate Affairs Project of AEGEE-Europe. Contact: Ioana Leu PR Responsible of AEGEE-Bruxelles/Brussel Phone (mobile): +32.488.583.125 E-mail:


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