Between 31st October and 4th November, Budapest, Hungary hosted the General Assembly of AEGEE-Europe, the European Students’ Forum. Within the framework of this event, a wide variety of topics have been addressed from lively discussions on the Europe of tomorrow to how young people can contribute to it.
More than 800 students gathered together from more than 40 countries for the Autumn Agora Budapest, to discuss the future of the organisation and AEGEE’s role in contributing to the future of the whole continent. Besides European youth leaders and activists, politicians have also addressed the event and welcomed AEGEE’s new initiatives.
Through his video message, José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission granted his support for AEGEE’s work in engaging young Europeans in policy-making and especially in tackling the issue of youth unemployment. Also in a video message, Martin Schulz, president of the European Parliament also expressed his support for AEGEE’s active citizenship initiative, the project aimed to promote the upcoming European Parliamentary elections and foster youth participation. Among the other external guest speakers were László Andor, EU Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, Tibor Navracsics, deputy prime minister of Hungary and Zsolt Rostoványi, rector of Corvinus University of Budapest.
The Autumn Agora Budapest has marked a new way for AEGEE in the process of reshaping its identity. Once again, EU policies and youth affairs are the topic of everyday conversation on the European level of the Association and the Board of Directors 2012/2013 is doing its very best to implement the wave of changes. Active citizenship and youth participation are becoming top priorities in times when the European institutions are drafting various proposals for the upcoming decade. “These discussions are of relevance because right now we are seeing how Europe is going into different negotiations with the next multiannual financial framework, and drafting of new policies that will affect how Europe develops until the year 2020. So it’s important that students state what they would like to see in 2020” – concludes Luis Alvarado Martinez, President of AEGEE-Europe.
Furthermore, several new projects from different field of actions have been presented and approved by the audience of the Agora. The Europe in Exchange project – aiming to further embed the principles of active citizenship within the Network, the Health4Youth project which fosters young people’s awareness on the healthy way of living. Last but not least, the EuroArab project of AEGEE-Europe has been officially launched in order to bring Arabic culture closer to European youth and to set the ground for later intercultural discourses.
AEGEE members are now looking forward to attending the next statutory events; the European Boards meeting in Valletta (February) and the next General Assembly in Mannheim (Agora Rhein-Neckar in April) to further develop the thematic focus of the Association and bring the European sphere one step closer to young people.
AEGEE was born 27 years ago with the vision of creating a unified Europe, based on democracy and respect for human rights, bringing together students with different cultural backgrounds. Today, AEGEE is Europe’s largest interdisciplinary youth organisation: 40 countries, 200 cities, 13 000 friends. This network provides the ideal platform for young volunteers to work together on cross-border activities such as international conferences, seminars, exchanges, training courses and case study trips. In line with the challenges young people are currently facing in Europe, AEGEE’s work for the period of 2011-2014 is focused on three main areas: Youth Participation, Bridging Europe and Inclusion of Minorities.
If you would like more information about AEGEE, or Autumn Agora Budapest, please contact:
European Institutions and Communications Director of AEGEE-Europe
Phone: +32 2 246 0320
Mobile: +32 487 410 060