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Youth and the world

Youth and the world

What is the EU's Role?

The EU aims to support young people to cooperate with regions outside Europe and to be more involved in global policy processes on issues such as climate change, the UN Millennium Development Goals, human rights, etc. In particular, this means:

  • raising awareness of global issues among young people;
  • providing opportunities for young people to exchange views with policy makers on global issues;
  • fostering mutual understanding among young people from all over the world through dialogue;
  • encouraging young people to volunteer for environmental projects ("green volunteering") and adopt green behaviours (recycling, saving energy, using hybrid vehicles, etc.);
  • promoting entrepreneurship, employment, education, and volunteering opportunities outside Europe;
  • promoting cooperation with and exchanges between youth workers on different continents;
  • encouraging young people to volunteer in developing countries or to work on development issues in their own country.
How is this being done?

Specifically, the Commission pursues these objectives through:

  • Partnership with the Council of Europe– annual symposia of youth policy-makers, youth researchers, youth workers, and young people in South-East Europe, Eastern Europe and the Caucasus, as well as the Southern Mediterranean.
  • Eastern Partnership Youth Window - a partnership between the EU and Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine which aims to facilitate youth exchanges and support capacity building and training.
  • Theme-based activities - Erasmus+ offers opportunities for young people to take part in activities abroad with other young people from across Europe. Activities can include topics such as environmental issues, citizen participation, and human rights.
  • Bilateral events - between the EU and non-EU countries, to promote intercultural dialogue and understanding between young people.

The "EU-China High Level People-to-People Dialogue" launched in 2012 has resulted in a number of partnerships and networks involving youth organisations. The dialogue focuses on issues of common interest such as youth employability and entrepreneurship, youth involvement in society, and voluntary activities.