Putting youth in the spotlight: Avoiding a lost generation
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, young people have missed out on education, training and job opportunities. Lockdowns and hindered social relations have affected their mental health and their way of life. The European Year of Youth 2022 was a way to address some of those problems with tangible solutions. Our Group has promised to give citizens a greater say in determining the future of the European Union, that's why we committed to put youth in the spotlight not only this year but throughout the whole of our mandate.
Our aim is not to merely talk ABOUT young people but discuss together WITH them. That's why we make continuous efforts to engage with young people from all backgrounds in order to mainstream youth perspectives in our committee work.
YOUTH MEETUP IN BRUSSELS
Our Youth Meetup in July this year was the kick-off event of a series of meetings with our MEPs across the Member States. More than 500 young participants from across Europe representing 39 nationalities gathered in Brussels to discuss key challenges that youth are facing today and to come up with concrete policy solutions. All these recommendations will be considered for the Renew4Youth Manifesto, which our Group will present in the course of 2023.
#RenewEurope marks the #YearofYouth by opening the doors of the @Europarl_EN 💪— Renew Europe (@RenewEurope) July 11, 2022
Today, we welcome 140 young people from all over Europe 🇪🇺
We reaffirm our commitment to listen, strengthen the voice and involve the youth as key actors in the decision-making process #Renew4Youth pic.twitter.com/fBQ6ijCQi7
Giving new opportunities for Skills and Fostering Mobility
Young people need the adequate financial support for gaining access and opportunities to skills fit for the XXI century: digital education, soft skills, languages, as well as acquisition of critical thinking and media literacy. That's why we pledged to support investments in youth across all policy areas, starting with the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF) and national recovery plans. We are committed to improve and promote mobility opportunities for youth from all backgrounds, to give them the chance to enhance their skills and their employability. We continue to support student mobility opportunities of the new Erasmus+ and European Solidarity Corps programmes, as set out in the new inclusion chapter, to all young people in our constituencies. We want to foster long-term mobility of VET-students, the mobility for NEETs, young people from rural areas and from the outermost regions.
Labour Market Integration of Young People
40% of employers cannot find people with the right skills to fill their vacancies, at the same time too many young people cannot find a job; this is particularly worrying with regard to the high level of youth unemployment in several European member states.
Our aim is to address the critical situation of youth integration into the labour market. We aim to facilitate coordination between youth and the private sector while boosting integrated support for training, up-skilling, access to jobs and traineeships, and counselling for young people. Our Group pledges to support and propose actions that facilitate the labour market integration of young people, such as by mutual recognition of vocational and academic degrees or by removing barriers and supporting a single European Job Market.
Tackling mental health issues
Almost 2 out of 3 young people are affected by anxiety or depression as a result of the pandemic, with pre-existing inequalities causing marginalised youth to be disproportionately impacted. We are committed to addressing the critical situation of mental health of young people by strengthening EU4Health and by developing parliamentary initiatives on this matter.
Today is #WorldMentalHealthDay!— Renew Europe (@RenewEurope) October 10, 2022
Young Europeans increasingly suffer from #mentalhealth issues but EU data to map the problem do not exist. We can't solve a problem without understanding its causes!
This is why we launch our Youth Mental Health Survey today.
Take part! 👇
RENEW YOUTH ACADEMY
On 29th and 30th November 2022, 50 young representatives of liberal Youth organisations were invited to the European Parliament in Brussels to enhance their skillset and gain practical experience on how to engage, advocate and communicate with politicians, institutions and interest groups to influence EU decision-making. By working with political and communication experts on a case study, the participants developed a tangible set of competencies that they can use in the real world when advocating for issues that truly matter to the young generation. It was an excellent opportunity for our participants to enhance their ability to act as a Youth Leader in their community, and ultimately, have impact on political decisions. They will contribute to shape the Europe of Tomorrow!
Our job doesn't stop here. In 2023 we will continue to involve more and more young people to shape together the future of our continent and to #RenewEurope. Follow our updates and join us at our events next year!