European Year of Youth 2022: Investing on a generation

The active participation of young people is not only an option but a must to build a better future that corresponds to the needs and expectations of different age groups. Designing a future requires understanding and involving the youth. Thus, Europe is setting up theoretical and practical solutions to create more and better opportunities dedicated to youth for the future of the continent. Giving priority to understanding the youth and providing them new and more opportunities, the Commission has adopted its formal proposal to make 2022, the European Year of Youth.

The Commission has also published its latest EU Youth Report, which provides an overview of the situation of young Europeans in terms of education, training, learning, employment, civic and political participation.

Through the European Year of Youth the Commission aspires:

  • to honour and support the generation that has suffered consequences of the pandemic,
  • to encourage all young people, especially those with fewer opportunities, from disadvantaged backgrounds, from rural or remote areas, or belonging to vulnerable groups,
  • to draw inspiration building upon the Conference on the Future of Europe.

This is also a great opportunity for us and all Interreg family when it comes to involving young people in our interregional cooperation mission. Eventually, The Youth Manifesto developed and presented by a group of young people in 2020 to mark Interreg’s 30th birthday is published by the Commission. The Youth Manifesto covers young people’s ideas and wishes on how to improve territorial cooperation in the future in order to make young generations feel heard by EU decision-makers. Another important initiative is the designation of Tirana as Youth Capital in 2022. In this frame, macro-regional strategies (MRS) and their dedicated channels for youth dialogues will be at the center of various initiatives via the Tirana Youth Capital 2022 and youth councils that will be set up under the four MRS.

Addition to the successful youth programs of the EU that have been changing the lives of millions of youth such as Erasmus+ and the European Solidarity Corps that continue to provide opportunities not only in the EU but also in partner countries, new programs and initiatives are being designated as well. A new programme called ALMA will be launched to support cross-border professional mobility for disadvantaged young people in the coming period.