A Unified Voice of the Western Balkans Youth: Skopje

From 30th of May to 2nd of June the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung yet again gathered enthusiastic and creative representatives of youth organizations from the Western Balkans region to continue their initiatives of strengthening cooperation among youth organizations. This time around, members of youth NGOs and national youth councils met in Skopje with an ambitious agenda of making decisive steps for improving their future efforts.

Continuing their avid interest initiated in Tirana and followed up in Belgrade, participants were keen on revisiting their vision and incentives for fruitful cooperation. The discussions focused on creating stable foundations with specific targets to ensure earnest and nurturing collaboration focused on what the youth in the region need and wish to achieve. This meeting was an opportunity to create internal mechanisms that will be working with ownership and self-motivation on the prospective solutions the network aims to advocate for.

The FES also used this opportunity to familiarize the participants with more in depth information on youth in the region using the results of our regional youth study, and more specifically the “The Situation of Youth in the WB6 Countries” policy paper. The presentation of our findings served as a base for creating possible action plans that the Western Balkans Youth Voice will be working on in the near future.

Youth representatives worked devotedly over the course of three and a half days on using the results of the studies and outcomes of previous meetings to estimate their progress and evaluate priorities for the end of this year. A key takeaway from this meeting was the importance of taking initiative in order to ensure progressive treads towards the goal of improving the satus of youth.

By the end of this year, the participants are expected to have completed an action plan on priority areas such as employment and education. Other than that, they wish to maximize their efforts in reaching key audiences with the work of their network and action plans.

The work of the group continues, and the commitment remains high towards voicing the concerns of youth in youth-driven policy recommendations.

Dialogue Southeast Europe

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