From the 11th to 14th of April, the FCV was invited to participate in the international activity ‘A matter of trust’, which was held in Jerez de la Frontera (Cádiz).
The meeting, organized by the Youth Association Inter, allowed to create a dialogue and exchange between high school students of the Eduardo Jiménez High School of that city, representatives of the various political parties of Jerez and young political leaders of Estonia, Slovakia and Turkey.
Throughout two intense mornings, the students could learn about the functioning of the political systems of other European countries and their relationship with the history of the 20th century and share their impressions on various topics; from how to improve the educational system, to how to actively participate in the improvement of your society. The students participated in dynamics of exchange and debate, in which they talked about how to facilitate the participation of young people in political life, they discussed current issues, such as the increase of racism, populism or nationalism, and commented on some of the problems that affect them within the school, such as bullying or lack of information about how to participate in social, cultural and political initiatives that take place in their city.
Some of the conclusions reached by the students were the need to dedicate more time to practice and less to theory. The students agreed on wanting to carry out more extracurricular activities and to be able to participate in more activities such as the meeting, marked by interaction, work in small groups and by knowledge exchange and debate with young people from other countries.
Lorena and Lluc participated in the meeting as observers, supporting the organization as moderators and translators.
Lluc took on the task of facilitating a roleplay dynamic, in which the issue of nationalism was addressed in the context of the political situation in Catalonia, presenting aspects of the Catalan language, culture, traditions and gastronomy; Lorena, on the other hand, participated in a program of the Jerez radio live, together with the young representatives of the invited political parties.
The participation of both was possible thanks to the support of the mobility program of the Spanish network of the Anna Lindh Foundation and Inter.
The meeting has helped us know first-hand the key action ‘Structured Dialogue among young people and those responsible for decision-making’, to know the point of view of many young people about their own needs and interests and to get to know entities in Jerez with which we hope to continue collaborating.
On a personal level, I was struck by the fact that in one activity a small group of young people declared themselves unprepared to vote and proposed that the minimum age be extended from 18 to 20 years, when the subject under discussion was to lower the age minimum to 16 years (as it already happens in other European countries), a fact that reflects the ignorance and distance that still exists between young people and politics.
The activity was carried out with the support of the Erasmus + program of the European Commission.