Youth Council of Trikala Organized Parliamentary Debate

Youth Council of Trikala Organized Parliamentary Debate

Trikala’s Youth Council with the support of the Municipality (Mr. StefanosVavylis, who is an elected Municipal representative and Mr, Michalis Lappas, who is the Vice Mayor of Education, Sports and Culture supported the youth council throughout this process), organized a very interesting event on the 12 of May 2023. Taking into consideration that the Greek National Elections will take place on the 21st of May, the youth council had a Parliamentary debate.

6 Representatives from 6 different political parties participated and were asked to give answers on questions prepared by the youth council and addressed by them during a discussion that lasted more than 3 hours.

Some of the topics that the youth council addressed are the following:

  • Thoughts and political framework on the existing admitting system for youngsters to enter Universities
  • Policies regarding the very high rent prices incities that house the country’s universities
  • In relation to the mental health issues that plague young people, inside and outside the school units. What policies are they considering to carry out towards this problem?
  • Policies towards resolving the problem of the undermine of the drama school of the national theatre graduates.
  • Young graduate’sunemployment in the city of Trikala has been galloping for several years. What are they thinking of doing to reduce unemployment among the city’s youth so they feel safe living in our city? Are they thinking of any interventions to solve the problem of unregistered/ black market employment?
  • Some of the effects of climate change in the region are an increase in fires and water scarcity. What policies do they plan to pursue in the direction of climate neutrality?
  • Since the period of the pandemic (Covid-19), the phenomenon of significant drug shortages has been observed. Thought and actions about possible ways to solve such a serious issue?
  • Some of the problems faced by people with disabilities are difficulty in accessing public spaces, public buildings and means of transport, discrimination in the working environment and difficulty in finding work. In the context of improvement, are there any policies that they intent to implement?
  • Their position and thoughts towards the term femicide. Do they have in mind policies that will address this matter? Are they planning to take measures towards reducing the time it takes for judicial decisions to be made?
  • Are they thinking of ways to reduce the phenomenon of police arbitrariness in Greece?
  • Do they intend to increase the awareness of the local communities on the issues of the LGBT+ community and, at the same time, do they intend to legalize civil marriage and adoption for same-sex couples in Greece?
  • There is a great disillusionment of young people towards the country’s political system after the tragic train accident in Tempe. What do they have to say to convince all the youth to come and vote in this election and what pledges can they give to prevent something so tragic from happening again in the future.

It goes without saying that all 12 questions were to the point. None of the political representatives was informed in advance about the topics of the questions and each one had 1,5 minute to make his/ her statement.

Lastly the whole discussion was also video streamed. One can watch it on line here:

The experience of French participants from the Mobility event in Cyprus

The experience of French participants from the Mobility event in Cyprus

The NEUEYT mobility took a teacher of English and civics and a 16 year pupil from Pau, France to HUB Nicosia, Cyprus, where  they were welcome by the partners from this organization and Dora. There, they met members of e-Trikala (Greece) youth assembly as well as other pupils from Cyprus along with their teacher of English.

The morning was spent at the Youth Board  of Cyprus, learning and exchanging about the various actions taken on a daily basis by the youth department to lead to youth empowerment. Then they went to Nicosia’s buffer zone – controlled by the UN- where the inhabitants of both parts of Cyprus can meet and share joint projects and activities. 

After discovering the city, they got to exchange on their personnal experimentations of non-formal methods to implement participatory debates and active citizenship, which led to various projects : the Greeks found the 6 STEPS method useful in decision-making, and it gave way to awareness campaigns at Limassol high school, where the pupils chose to address the problem or the stress generated by the exams at school for instance. In France, the silent debates allowed everyone to have a say in the topics that were dealt with and the pupils decided to take steps and act in a more eco-friendly way at school. 

Meeting in Nicosia was a great experience both for the adults and for the pupil, who could open up to the others, learn and share all together. The experience is not over since they are still in touch on the social networks !

Six Steps – Final Transnational Online Workshop

Six Steps – Final Transnational Online Workshop

Following the finalization of the 6 Steps initiative, HUB NICOSIA, E-Trikala, and PISTES SOLIDAIRES organized the final online transnational workshop where participants and stakeholders had the opportunity to share experiences from the implementation phase of the initiative. The most prominent element was the usefulness of the 6 Steps methodology to support group work and achieving common goals on topics that are relevant to each working group.

Moreover, lessons learned and challenges were discussed, and it was very interesting to realize how the initiative supported all participants to raise their voices on matters they believe in. For example, participants from Cyprus created three different intervention plans and organized different activities based on those plans, in which they invited more young people and more policymakers and stakeholders to participate. All participants felt a sense of achievement and were really proud of their work which signifies that they are open to use the methodology in the future.

Mobility Event in Norway, organized by Agder

Mobility Event in Norway, organized by Agder

Agder County was the host of the NEUEYT mobilities the 27th and 28th of April. Our guests were two politicians and two youth representing E-Trikala (Greece) and Foris (Italy).

The event started April 27th  in the county administration office, where Agder County gave information about how we include youth in county planning processes. There was also a presentation on how we work with youth democracy through the regional youth council, which is regulated by law in Norway. In addition, Agder County represented UngData, a way of collecting information about the lives of youth in our schools. 17 000 youth in Agder responded to the last UngData survey.

The delegation then went to the City Hall in Kristiansand to meet the Deputy Mayor, Erik Rostoft. Kristiansand is a city of approximately 115 000 inhabitants. The delegation had a very fruitful discussion with the Deput Mayor about the need for politicians to connect better with its citizens, and especially with the young people growing up. The delegation from Italy and Greece also gave valuable information about the youth democracy in their countries.

In the afternoon, the delegation went to Samsen, a cultural house for youth. Samsen is Norways largest, most extensive and diverse cultural center for youth.It is the municipality of Kristiansand´s flagship provider of cultural activities for young people aged 15-25 in the region. At Samsen the youth can participate in for example dance, music, art, film making, photography, climbing, parkour, concerts, festivals and events.

In the evening, the delegation visited a big conference made by youth in a democracy project in Kristiansand.

Friday the 28th, the delegation visited the municipality of Lillesand. Lillesand has approximately 11 000 inhabitants. In the morning we hada meeting with the Mayor, Einar Holmer Hoven, and with youth from Lillesand who has participated in the NEUEYT activities. We also had a presentation about youth council work in the municipalities.

The delegation the moved to Lillesand Upper Secondary School, where we got information on how the school works with student democracy, and how the school works with engaging the students in decision making processes. We met the principal, the student leader, teachers and youth. We also got a guided tour around the school premises.

In the afternoon, the delegation was picked up in a boat in Lillesand centre bye the County Mayor, Arne Thomassen. He took the delegation around the beautiful coast line of Lillesand, and we also got to see the old outport Brekkestø.

We had some great days in Norway. It was a meeting between very engaged people from different countries, who truly have the youth best interests in mind. Agder County would like to thank the amazing people from Greece and Italy who came to visit us!

Mobility event in Cento, Italy organized by Foris

Mobility event in Cento, Italy organized by Foris

We are thrilled to share some exciting news with you! The mobility event in Cento, Italy from 20th to 21st of April was a great success! The event brought together stakeholders and young people from Italy, France and Norway to discuss youth democratic participation and involvement.

The event was full of engaging activities, including a meeting with the Mayor and political leadership from the Municipality of Cento. The local government presented its youth policy programme and priorities, which led to a fruitful discussion between youth politicians and stakeholders. During the meeting between the Mayors of Cento, and Lillesand (NO), they shared their experiences and initiatives they are curing out to improve the quality of life of youngsters. It was a great opportunity to learn from each other and improve the policies for a betterment of their respective communities.

Participants also had the chance to explore Cento’s cultural heritage through a guided visit, which was a great way to understand the city’s history and values.

The encounter with the representatives of the Youth Council was also very appreciated  and all the parties animatedly discussed topics of main interest for youth. The discussion also touched upon public-private cooperation in joint community-based initiatives/projects and best practices exchange. Participants had the chance to meet with Alessandro Mazzini from Strade NGO, Stefano Resca from Bangherang Association, and Enrico Taddia from Fondazione Zanandrea, who shared their valuable insights and experiences.

Overall, the event was a fruitful opportunity for young people and stakeholders to come together, discuss ideas, and try to find ways to improve communities, youth participation in democratic life, as well as mutual forms of dialogue and listening.. Let’s continue to prioritize youth engagement for a more inclusive society for all!