“More work, more
results, more fun!”
The EGL Steering Group came together on the 3rd and 4rd of July 2023. The main aims of this Steering Group meeting were to discuss the past project year of EGL (including the conclusions of the 5th EGL Event), to share information about the upcoming conference Local Youth Work And Democracy, and to start the co-creation process to renew the mission of EGL. The representatives met at the offices of JINT vzw (the national agency of Erasmus+ and the European Solidarity Corps in the Flemish community of Belgium).
Babis Papaioannou (Policy Officer at the European Commission) joined as a special guest. Hans-Georg Wicke supported the Steering Group to renew the EGL mission for 2024-2027 as an external expert. Gisele Evrard facilitated the meeting.
Informing and updates
Babis Papaioannou started off the Steering Group meeting. He updated the members about European level initiatives and the European Commission. He told the Steering Group about the process of midterm evaluation of the EU Youth Strategy, the implementation of the European Youth Work Agenda, the starting dialogue for the 4th European Youth Work Convention, and the current cycle of the European Youth Dialogue, among others.
State of Play
Coordinator Judit Balogh then informed the Steering Group about EGL’s 7th project year, which ended on the 30th of June. In the last months, there was the 5th EGL Event in Stockholm (Sweden). There were also several small scale activities like the Project Labs in Bonn and Chalkidiki. Some of the study visits included the ones to Croatia, Slovenia, and Sweden. Furthermore, the Charter Ambassadors were followed up, and EGL is getting ready for the 2024 conference Local Youth Work and Democracy. Moreover, North-Macedonia is joining the EGL family.
The Advisory Board of September is also being prepared. Some of the themes that will be discussed are: the future of Europe Goes Local, taking stock of what has happened this past year, planning new TCA activities, building further on the output of the 5th EGL conference, and following up on the platform exercise that the Steering Group started with.
There were more than 150 participants from 33 countries at the 5th EGL Conference in Stockholm last May. The event focused on several themes. These were: strengthening national cooperation, emphasising the role of national and local stakeholders in developing local youth work, using European tools, policies and frameworks. Judit gave an overview of the conference, the received feedback, and plans for the next conference.
Director of JINT vzw Koen Lambert shed light about the next conference Local Youth Work and Democracy. Europe Goes Local and Democracy Reloading will cooperate to organise this European conference under the upcoming Belgian EU Presidency.
Renewing the mission of EGL
The second part of the meeting was to kick off co-creation process to renew the mission of EGL. Hans-Georg Wicke supported this discussion by writing and presenting a first draft analysis, steering the exercise, and writing a report.
The Steering Group members started off this process with a first exercise. The first outcomes of the discussion shows that the European Charter on Local Youth Work will play a strong role in the future of the project. The members also agreed that EGL has a crucial task in the implementation of the European Youth Work Agenda through the Bonn Process. Lastly, they agreed that EGL plays a crucial role in promoting the European programs Erasmus+ and the European Solidarity Corps.
The Advisory Board will continue this co-creation process in September. The aim is to reach agreements on concrete goals and strategies by the end of the year.
Europe Goes Local is governed by the Steering Group. The group meets two or three times a year to make decisions and to discuss important subject pertaining EGL. A mix of representatives from National Agencies and other stakeholders composes the Steering Group.
The representatives of the National Agencies are: JINT vzw (NA BE_FL), JUGEND für Europa (NA DE), Erasmus+ and European Solidarity Corps Estonian Agency or National Agency (NA EE), Agence Erasmus+ France Jeunesse & Sport (NA FR), National Agency for Erasmus+/Youth sector & European Solidarity Corps Youth and Life Long Learning Foundation (NA GR), Agency for Mobility and EU Programmes (NA HR), Agency for International Programmes for Youth (NA LV), A Agência Nacional Erasmus+ Juventude/Desporto e Corpo Europeu de Solidariedade (NA PT),
The representatives of the organisations are CoE Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, DYPALL Network – Developing Participation at the Local Level, European Youth Information and Counselling Agency (ERYICA), KEKS, POYWE – Professional Open Youth Work in Europe, and European Youth Forum, and Marc Boes as an external expert.