“Super Youth Worker”
StädteRegion Aachen, Koordinationsstelle Jugendpartizipation
Zollernstraße 16, 52070 Aachen, Germany
A practice of processes and methods
The activities and projects of the “Koordinationsstelle Jugendpartizipation” in the StädteRegion Aachen and European Region aim to sharpen the sense of active citizenship, solidarity and tolerance among young people, to strengthen their regional identification, to involve them in shaping the future of the region and the EU, and to support the democratic will of young people to participate. Young people should recognise, accept and realise their opportunities for participation.
The projects are primarily concerned with integrating young people into society and politics. It is essential that young people enter a dialogue with decision-makers. Young people should be given the opportunity to communicate their opinions and also to represent them in front of politicians. Important here is the dialogue at eye level, which comes into play again and again in the events.
In many respects, the “youth” phase of life is an important developmental phase in which the Koordinationsstelle Jugendpartizipation calls for participation and self-confidence in one’s own possibilities for action. In doing so, it serves as both a listening ear and a mouthpiece for every young person in political and social decision-making matters.
The entire project series: “Das geht! – Youth and Politics in Dialogue 2023 to 2024” includes preparatory working group meetings, information and exchange formats initiated and organised by the working group members, as well as larger event formats such as several student representation days and a separate action series on the European Parliament elections in 2024.
In order to organise and plan the information and discussion formats, the Koordinationsstelle Jugendpartizipation has already networked existing (cooperation) partners from school policy and municipal youth participation in the StädteRegion Aachen. The network includes young people and representatives from the youth committees of the StädteRegion Aachen, the youth policy association “Ring politischer Jugend” of the StädteRegion Aachen and representatives of the district pupils’ representation of the StädteRegion Aachen. Furthermore, representatives of the RegioSportBund e.V. will be involved.
In addition to the established working group, the Koordinationsstelle has founded a second working group consisting of the youth welfare officers of the municipalities of the StädteRegion Aachen and other multipliers of the education region.
The Koordinationsstelle Jugendpartizipation is to act as an interface between the two working groups. Through the networks of young people and youth workers in the municipalities of the StädteRegion Aachen, nationwide access to information on the information and participation formats will be guaranteed in the period from January 2023 to December 2024. All projects should offer young people, first-time voters and young adults easy, barrier-free and sustainable access to bundled information materials, which will be available online and on social media platforms.
The participants in the discussion events should have the opportunity to ask the politicians questions and interactively influence the course of the event. The aim is to reach as many and as diverse young people as possible through the different actions. All young people can participate in the youth working group.
Especially first-time voters and young voters are a specific target group of the information and project series. Participating young people and young people involved in the working group should be reached by the information materials and motivated to deal with them in order to participate conscientiously and actively in the events.
All actions planned and evaluated in the project “Das geht! Dialogue between Youth and Politics” in the period from 2023 to 2024 have set themselves the goal of educating young citizens who are politically and democratically motivated and interested.
In particular, first-time voters and young people should be neutrally informed about the upcoming European elections in 2024, deal with the election and create a foundation through which they want to actively participate in elections throughout their lives.
Young people should further develop their understanding of democracy and conscientiously engage with the issues and corresponding party positions. In the dialogue formats with the respective candidates and/or politicians, young people should be able to bring in their questions, ideas and wishes. The decision-makers deal with the questions and opinions of young people. Namely, young people should actively take responsibility for their living environment and the decisions that
affect them.Young people should be given the opportunity to deal with social and political structures in order to be able to formulate their
own opinions and attitudes to the areas of life that concern them.
Young people should be motivated by the actions to deal with politics. Their feeling for the important political decisions that affect them should be sensitised. In particular, due to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, inequalities in opportunities to obtain and process information and to participate in dialogue events are to be counteracted.
In addition, the political responsibility of every young person entitled to vote, especially first-time voters, should be demonstrated through the democratic election and motivated to participate conscientiously in the election.
Organisation and practice