Over the period 2012-2013, additional funds will be allocated to the Youth in Action Programme to support more projects involving young people, youth workers and youth organisations from the European Union as well as from the Eastern Partnership region. Find out more about these new opportunities!
The Eastern Partnership Youth Window is part of a broader range of initiatives undertaken by the European Commission to increase support to cooperation with the Eastern Partnership neighbouring countries in the field of youth.
Under this initiative, it is envisaged to provide additional funds to the EU Youth in Action Programme over the period 2012-2013 through the European Neighbourhood Policy Instrument (ENPI) in order to increase opportunities for cooperation among young people, youth workers and youth organisations from the European Union as well as from the Eastern Partnership neighbouring countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine.
Concretely, the Eastern Partnership Youth Window means new opportunities to finance more projects involving organisations and participants from the Eastern Partnership region.
The Eastern Partnership Youth Window is not a new programme, but rather a new framework within the Youth in Action Programme to encourage a stronger involvement of the Eastern Partnership region.
Youth in Action (2007-2013) is the EU Programme for all young people. With a total budget of 885 million Euros for seven years, it promotes mobility, non-formal learning, youth work development and it encourages the inclusion of all young people, regardless of their educational, social or cultural background.
Youth in Action enables more than 150 000 young people and youth workers every year to be involved in a variety of non-formal education activities across and beyond the European Union, as a means to foster intercultural dialogue, mutual respect and solidarity and to break down prejudices and stereotypes.
The projects funded by Youth in Action aim at enhancing young people's employability and active participation in society by fostering the development of their skills and competences as well as their active citizenship. The programme also offers training and cooperation opportunities to youth organisations and youth workers with a view to enhancing their professionalism and to developing the youth sector in Europe.
The establishment of the Eastern Partnership Youth Window is one of the main initiatives of the European Commission to respond to the needs of young people from Eastern Partnership Countries.
The Window will allow more young people from the EU and the Eastern Partnership countries to establish new contacts and to exchange and learn from each other. It will also help youth workers from both sides to benefit from training and capacity-building opportunities, improving their competences in working with young people, particularly those from rural or deprived urban areas and from the most disadvantaged backgrounds.
All this will ultimately contribute to the broad objectives of the European Neighbourhood Policy to strengthen the partnership between the EU and the neighbouring countries by building a stronger partnership with the people living in those countries.
Under the Eastern Partnership Youth Window, the following activities can be supported:
• European Voluntary Service (EVS): Young people take part individually or in group in non-profit, voluntary activities for up to 12 months in another country, helping in local projects in a wide range of fields: social, ecological and environmental, arts and culture, new technologies, leisure and sports, etc. EVS is a long-term learning experience for the volunteers and it benefits local communities.
• Youth Exchanges: Opportunities for groups of young people from different countries to meet and learn from each other, discover and become aware of different social and cultural realities by actively participating in joint activities of common interest based on non-formal learning methods.
• Training and Networking of those active in youth work and youth organisations: Activities supporting the training of those active in youth work and youth organisations, in particular the exchange of experiences, expertise and good practice between them; as well as activities which may lead to long-lasting quality projects and partnerships and networks. These include training courses, seminars, study and feasibility visits, evaluation meetings, job-shadowing, partnership-building and networking activities.
In addition to the general conditions and priorities of the Youth in Action Programme, projects to be supported under the Eastern Partnership Youth Window will have to meet some additional priorities, which reflect the specific needs of the region. For this reason, priority under this Window will be given to projects:
• Demonstrating a clear commitment to provide support to young people with fewer opportunities living in rural or deprived urban areas;
• Raising awareness about the nature of youth work;
• Promoting the sharing of best practices in the sphere of youth work.
Project proposals can be submitted by one of the following promoters:
• Non profit/non governmental organisations, or
• Local, regional public bodies, or
• Bodies active at European level in the youth field
legally established in a Programme Country (27 EU Member States, EEA/EFTA countries, Croatia, Switzerland, Turkey) or an Eastern Partnership Neighbouring Country (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine).
Projects should be based on a solid, balanced partnership between promoters based in Programme Countries and promoters based in the Eastern Partnership Countries. One of the partners takes the lead in ensuring the coordination of the project, submitting the project application and managing the grant.
All the conditions and criteria on how to submit a project application can be found in the Youth in Action Programme Guide, which is available at: http://ec.europa.eu/youth
Promoters based in the Eastern Partnership countries and hosting the activity must submit their project proposals to the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency in Brussels. Details on how to submit a project to the EACEA can be found on the Agency's website: http://eacea.ec.europa.eu/youth/index_en.php
• EU Youth Website: http://ec.europa.eu/youth
• Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency: http://eacea.ec.europa.eu/index_en.php
• SALTO Eastern Europe and Caucasus Resource Centre: http://www.salto-youth.net/rc/eeca/