Brussels, 22 April 2008
A list of specific conclusions was drawn up in the conference's five workshops, which dealt with: mobility, employment, non-formal education and competence building, integration in society and political participation of young people with fewer opportunities and finally, the role of young people in intercultural dialogue.
This Memo outlines the main outcomes of the Presidency Youth conference:
- On mobility: The participants stressed that mobility is crucial for empowering young people with fewer opportunities and fostering their social integration. However, young people still face numerous administrative, socio-cultural, educational, informational and financial obstacles in exercising their right to mobility. It is therefore important to provide accessible information and to promote mobility through campaigns aimed at young people with fewer opportunities and their families, starting from an early age.
- New methodologies and strategies are necessary to reach young people with fewer opportunities. EU policies and programmes on mobility should be specifically adapted (e.g. user friendly application forms and guides, more short terms EVS projects, etc),
- On employment: The participants asked the EU to regulate internships in Member States to ensure minimum living conditions for young people across the EU. There should also be initiatives for the second generation of immigrants. Furthermore, governments should establish carrier centres and support personal/individual assistance for disabled people.
- The media, NGOs, social partners and governments should provide more information about training schemes and the requirements of the labour market to fight against early school leaving and other similar problems.
- On education: This should be free for all, based on competence and not on financial situation. Member States should emphasise the relevance, and raise the profile, of vocational training, and thereby redress the perception that having an academic degree is the only guarantee to get a job.
- The EU and Member States should improve cooperation between different actors and levels working on youth policies. In particular, systems of formal education and NGOs should open their structures and decision-making bodies to young people with fewer opportunities.