Professor Williamson contributes to the celebrations of the 25th anniversary of EU youth programmes

professor williamson eu conference

Internationally renowned Professor of European Youth Policy, Howard WilliamsonCBE from the University of South Wales recently took part in the high profile week long celebrations of European Youth Week (26 May-2 June) which focused on young people’s active citizenship participation in society.

Hundreds of events were organised in the 27 EU countries, Croatia, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland and Turkey. The Youth week also celebrated the silver anniversary of the EU’s support for youth which helped around 2.5 million young people and youth workers to participate in cross-border exchanges, European Voluntary Service and other non-formal learning activities.

Prof Williamson took part in the lively and interesting panel debate following the key notes speeches by Commissioner Vassilliou, MEP Doris Pack and the Irish Minister for Children and Youth affairs Frances Fitzgerald.

The other panel members included Peter Matjasic, President of the European Youth Forum and three Youth in Action ambassadors that have been nominated by the National Agencies for Youth in Action, Mr Kalvi, Member of Parliament in Estonia, Mr Ali Mahlodji, Austrian entrepreneur and Ms Wojciechowska, representative in the Polish government.

The discussion focused on the role of young people in shaping their own communities and society at large and in the EU. Prof Williamson comments: “Given the current debate in the UK about membership of the EU, it is important to remember what the EU has done for its young people – with 2.5 million taking part in EU youth programmes over the past 25 years. The current Youth in Action programme has provided about 10m Euro to the UK youth sector to be involved in a range of opportunities, including volunteering, youth initiatives and youth exchanges, with young people from other parts of Europe”.

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