Members of the European Economic and Social Committee are visiting thirty-five schools in the EU Member States, and seven candidate countries in February and March to prepare them for "Your Europe, Your Say!", the youth assembly to be held in Brussels on 23 and 24 March 2023.

This year, the EESC's event for youth "Your Europe, your Say!" (YEYS) will be held for the 14th time, returning to an in-person format after a three years' break due to COVID-19. Entitled "Youth Democracy Dialogues", it aims to help young people understand what European values stand for and what active citizenship means in a participatory democracy.

EESC members acting as mentors to students in this hands-on initiation to EU representative democracy are now in the process of visiting the selected school in their country (the photo pictures EESC Vice-President Cillian Lohan with students from Schull Community College in County Cork, Ireland).

The 16- to 18-year-old students will then come to Brussels in March and participate in workshops and working groups to reach a consensus.

Their proposals on fostering youth engagement and active citizenship will then be submitted to the European institutions and high-level European policy- and decision-makers.
This youth event is intended to raise awareness about the way groups with different interests reach social agreements.

The final event will take place on 23-24 March. Speakers will include:

  • EESC President Christa Schweng
  • EESC Communication Vice-President Cillian Lohan
  • Kira Marie Peter-Hansen, the youngest politician ever elected to the European Parliament (Greens/European Free Alliance Group), vice-chair for the subcommittee on tax matters
  • Ismael Páez Civico, board member at the European Youth Forum
  • Themis Christophidou, director-general for Education, Youth, Sport and Culture at the European Commission

Further details about #YEYS2023 are available on the website. (ab)