We had the feeling that May has passed in a mere blink of an eye, even though we thought that the summer months will be less engaging than the rest of the year given the fact that the Network is preparing for the Summer Universities. We had a full month with Charlemagne Award Ceremony in Aachen, IT European School in Debrecen, Network Commissioners, Historybook Project, Academy and YVote team in the house, and many more things, for which you should definitely continue reading!
May was another interesting month for the Comité Directeur in Brussels and around Europe. Firstly, I had to travel to Aachen to represent AEGEE-Europe and the Europe on Track project in the Charlemagne Youth Prize award ceremony where we were also representing Spain. We won the first prize which is great news and a step forward for our organization. After coming back and having different meetings in Brussels, preparing for the YO Fest of the European Youth Forum, preparing our intervention for the General Assembly (GA) of Les Anciens, coordination with the new United Nations AEGEE team etc, I was speaker in the European Parliament at an event organized by our project: Easter Partnership (EaP) about youth mobility in the EU and in EaP countries.
The last week of May was extremely busy with the European Youth Week going on in Brussels, where I had the chance to represent AEGEE-Europe in the Structured Dialogue review process of the EU (after 3 years, the mass consultation process of the EU with young people is being evaluated), the launch of the new European Youth Portal and the EU Youth Awards celebrating 25 years of EU Youth programs. I also participated in the different meetings in the YO! Fest organized by the European Youth Forum.
Finally, I ended the month by going to Malta to the General Assembly of Les Anciens.
I started the month of May the best way I could imagine. I sneaked into the event of the 10th anniversary of AEGEE-Alicante to give a surprise to all the people present there. It was great to see so many of them, including a big part of the Agora Alicante team! After that, I came back to the rainy part of Europe and back into the office to work on the development of our projects. Talking about projects, a highlight of the month was for sure taking an early train to Aachen for the ceremony for the Charlemagne Awards and coming back in the evening with a big smile! I traveled to Bergamo for their Network Meeting where I could present the Action Agenda for the locals present there, do the follow up of the EBM and the Agora Rhein Neckar and get motivation from that vibrant part of our network. I went also several times to the European Parliament, for instance to the presentation of the “Eastern Partnership Conference on Youth Mobility – the key to democratic reforms in the Eastern Partnership countries” or the YO! Fest, a festival organised by the European Youth Forum for the European Youth Week.
I also took a whole week of holidays to travel to the UK and participate at the Union Cup along with the Brussels team. This opportunity made me a lot of good. I came back with some bruises but a lot of energy for a very challenging month of June ahead.
End of April was quite tense but start of May was more in relax mood. As the reporting of Operational grant was done, I could focus on things on which I couldn’t work so much before. I was working on my sessions for ITES which took place in Debrecen. It was very well-organised and the participants were very-very interested in the sessions and in the work of the ITC. Before the ITES started, I was in Budapest and I used this chance to attend the Gala of AEGEE-Budapest. As usually, I was preparing with the rest of the CD newsletter. This time I changed the system of creating them to MailChimp which enables all those who are not familiar with HTML to create them. Before the end of the month, we welcomed in the house group from Liquid Democracy e.V. and with them, we were working on how to use platform Ypart which is used for youth participation in AEGEE for structured discussions. Also, as another deadline for funding was approaching, I started to prepare them with the rest of the team. Finally, on the last day of May, I went to Paris with Lucille for the Campus Probono at Sciences Po Paris, where we were working with students and professionals on AEGEE’s case study about communication strategy. Inputs from this event will be soon put into practice.
May was a more relaxed month for me. In the beginning of the month, I attended the Demography Forum of the European Commission, which brings together Civil Society Organisations, National and European Stakeholders to discuss the main demographic challenges Europe is and will be facing. It might not seem like one of our core interests at first sight, but as Youth Unemployment actually is one of the big topics discussed there, I received quite some new input on the Youth Guarantee.
The day after that, we all went to Aachen to the Charlemagne Youth Prize Ceremony. It was of course amazing to win, but also inspiring to see all the other projects created by young Europeans to bring our continent together.
During the upcoming week, I followed up some of the discussion we were having with partners on the Summer Universities, I worked together with Summer University Coordination Team (SUCT) and the rest of the team on the guide of learning objectives for Summer Universities, I attended the conference of the Eastern Partnership Project in the European Parliament and together with the rest of the team, we thought of a new structure for the website.
In the middle of the month, preparations of the IFISO meeting in Tunisia started, which took some of my time, as I was part of the management team. The meeting itself was very nice: beside the great hosts, the topics discussed there were also quite interesting, such as a future common project on higher education and student rights, common trainings etc. Afterwards, I took a couple of days off to do some sightseeing in Tunis and arrived back to Brussels just in time for the YO! Fest. The month was concluded by a very productive meeting of the new Academy Board, and I truly believe that they will bring AEGEE’s trainer pool back on track.
May has been one more month which has proved to be extremely busy for me. While the Agora Rhein Neckar was finished, there was still several events to prepare for the month of June. Indeed, AEGEE-Europe was the main organiser of a conference at the beginning of June, on the topic of co-management for young people inside the European Institutions (an article will be published in the AEGEEan soon). Together with Madalena Soua, Luis Alvarado Martinez and AEGEE-Bruxelles/Brussels, we have been preparing the concept, inviting the speakers, handling the logistics of the event, which took a lot of time and energy. At the same time, I was also preparing for other events which AEGEE-Europe was hosting in the European Parliament beginning of June (the Y Vote Press Conference and a round table on Recognition of Youth Workers’ competencies).
Apart from this, in May, I also represented AEGEE-Europe at a policy debate co-organised by the European Youth Forum and EUCIS-LLL on the communication of the European Commission regarding “rethinking Education”, on which AEGEE is bringing its youth and non-formal learning platform perspective.
I spent 2 days in Vilnius, during the General Assembly of the EUCIS-LLL Platform, in the course of which AEGEE got elected as member of the steering committee.
Last but not least, I joined Lucia Sobekova, Policy Officer on Human Rights, during her Policy Consultation which took place in Vienne, a small city close to Lyon. I have contributed to the facilitation process of the recommendation drafted by the participants, and I enjoyed very much the event that was put together by Lucia.
May started for me in the relaxing atmosphere of my hometown, where I spent two weeks, enjoying the sun and the warm company of my family and friends.
At the end of the month, I was giving financial assistance to Lucille and Madalena Sousa in the preparation of two events we were going to have in the European Parliament in the beginning of June: round table “Certification of Competences of Youth Workers in Europe” and a conference on co-management for Youth within the European Institutions (more details of them will follow in the June’s addition) and last but not least – representing together with the rest of the team AEGEE-Europe at the YO! Fest.
The last month has not only been rainy and cold, but also really interesting and active. In the beginning of May, I also had the possibility to attend the Charlemagne Youth Prize Award Ceremony, which brought us unbelievably happy moments, when they announced AEGEE’s project as winner. Many thanks to AEGEE-Aachen and Patrick Scholz for organizing the event and our stay there! I have also participated in a Summit on the topic of Saving Europe’s “Lost Generation” in Brussels, where some possible new co-operations might have started for AEGEE.
The busiest part of the month has arrived in the second part of the month: the Network Commissioners arrived in the house for an extremely fruitful, completely sleepless weekend with a totally full agenda. Due to the never-ending idea flows and extreme amount of e-mails, the meeting and the teambuilding proved to be efficient.
In May, we could also welcome a new Contact in our Network, Gəncə, with many ideas and plans for their members!
I spent the last week of the month “in the field”, with the preparation for the YO! Fest and the festival itself took my last days, but there, I had the possibility to meet different, interesting people with whom I will be granted the opportunity to work with in the future (for example, during the event on euroskepticisim in London).
May, when not the abovementioned events, meetings or e-mail answering happened, was filled with the work on the Human Resources of AEGEE: we have started the preparation for the Members’ Manual, I was continuously finalising the surveys on the HR Cycle, in order to have the input for a manual, I started to organise the HR forum for more than 10 INGYOs which will take place on 20th-21st of June in Brussels and the preparation for the Membership Growth Project of the European Youth Forum, where we will be a participating organisation, has been also started.
As it is my first Telegram, I should introduce myself briefly. I am Madalena, the first employee of AEGEE for Research and Administrative Officer and it has a been a great experience and a pleasure to work with AEGEE-Europe.
Joining the AEGEE-Europe world, May has started with contributing to different instruments, content documents and initiatives provided by the platform for its Antennae/Members. According with this and imore specificly, I have been following Educational policies and issues that are relevant for AEGEE work, such as Recognition and Validation of Non Formal Education, Youth Work, Lifelong Learning and therefore, I was attending the Policy Debate on “Partnerships for Lifelong Learning: A New Idea?” organised within the framework of the European Commission Communication “Rethinking Education: investing in skills for better socio-economic outcomes” and also the seminar on the “Value of the Youth Work” that was organised by ICF GHK jointly with the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency and the Directorate General .for Education and Culture of the European Commission. This event brought together participants from EU Member States who have an interest in and practical experience with youth work..
The youth work and the youth worker are priority concepts that AEGEE wants to follow and become a key actor to its development. Linked with this project, our Project on “Certification of the competences of youth workers in a European context – Road to greater recognition of youth work” is in partnership with other entities that came mainly to give a effective step forward in the field of the youth work with the recognition and validation of competences. The involvement and participation on the seminar gave us the opportunity to discuss / share some ideas on the topics, gain other perspectives and get an overview based on what other organization beliefs as well as relevant contacts for what is intended to do in the next steps of the project that AEGEE is facing.
A part from this work I have been preparing the Conferences that just took place in the beginning of June at the European Parliament, and giving administrative support to ongoing processes within AEGEE-Europe.