For the first time since the pandemic, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) opened its doors to the public on Saturday 6 May to celebrate Europe and discuss the future of the European Union.
A chance to reflect on what peace, cooperation and solidarity have built over the past 65 years of European integration, with a look to the future. With this in mind, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) held its traditional Open Day on Saturday, 6 May 2023.
The EESC Open Day celebrated the achievements of the European Union a few days ahead of 9 May, Europe Day, which marks the anniversary of the Schuman Declaration, the historic speech by French Foreign Minister Robert Schuman in 1950, which is considered to be the cornerstone of the European integration process.
Europe Day is a great opportunity to stop, take stock of the situation and think about how many things we take for granted in our Union, said Aurel Laurenţiu Plosceanu, the EESC vice-president for communication.
In Europe, we have built a European Union around a common project based on unity, diversity and each other's strengths and we have made war between Member States unthinkable.
For the first time since the end of the COVID-19 crisis, the EESC Open Day offered the public a unique opportunity to learn more about the Committee and how it makes a difference in the EU decision‑making process: the EESC is the only EU institution representing organised civil society, including employers, workers and other interest groups such as youth organisations, environmentalists, consumers, farmers, women's groups and many more.
More specifically, visitors were able to:
- Discover what the EESC can do for people and what a day in an EU institution looks like.
- Discuss issues of interest and concern with EESC members and find out more about the EESC's advisory role in the EU decision-making process.
- Take part in live activities and interactive games about the EU.
A special focus for this year was on opportunities for lifelong learning, since 2023 is the European Year of Skills.