Fighting for the future and sustainability of the youth work sector in Europe

The FCV will soon present the results of the European campaign for the recognition of youth work, carried out by the international network of entities Inter Alia, based in Athens, and composed of entities from Greece, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Portugal, Italy, Poland, United Kingdom, Serbia, Germany, Northern Macedonia, Estonia, Turkey, Catalonia and France.

The campaign is the result of a process of research, debate and participatory exchange that has taken place over the last 6 months, as part of a two-year project, in which we have agreed on a document that aims to become a useful tool for recognizing the work of youth organizations and the non-profit sector in Europe, after jointly identifying some of the aspects to be improved, both by the entities themselves and by the Community institutions and national agencies of each of the member countries of the program, responsible for its management. The document will mention the actions to be avoided, as they put at risk the trajectory and work done by youth organizations, and includes a list of recommendations and specific proposals for the improvement of a sector that can work in network and col. · Work much more, internally, and with the administration and the various information, training and resource creation centres that offer various types of support.

The recommendations will help the authorities to prioritize and make more efficient and responsible use of extremely limited resources, in order to achieve more and better results in terms of the promotion and recognition of the youth work sector. The recommendations are made from a realistic analysis of the current serious limitations, on the one hand, and the enormous potential of a sector that struggles to defend the interests of young people and that has very relevant knowledge to helping them become more self-sufficient, on the other hand.

As a result of the experience gained over years in working with young people and in the promotion and organization of youth initiatives and projects, with a significant impact on the lives and continuing education of thousands of young people in virtually every corner of the geography in a context as complex and complicated as the current one, the proposals are closely linked to elements that we consider a priority, firstly, for the survival of many entities and, secondly, for the strengthening and social use of its capabilities, which despite having a certain recognition, by society and the community institutions themselves, do not yet enjoy the recognition of either public institutions or academia in some countries of the European Union.

We trust that the campaign will serve to give value to the work of youth organizations and to learn, all together, from the analysis they make of the needs of young people, from their own work and approach, whether social inclusion, research, training or international mobility.

From the network we want to draw attention to the fact that more than 95% of the financial aid of the community action programs for young people is done through projects whose impact is very limited in time, that the percentage of entities that access community funds and receive the support of public institutions is insignificant in relation to the number of existing entities (and the capacity of the sector itself), or that, in some countries, youth organizations and groups young people have to compete with the public administration and schools to receive funding for community action programs, which means, in practice, not being able to access them.

For more information about the network, you can check out their website.