EMYS (Engaging Marginalised Youth for Sustainability) is a two-year project which aims to trigger the motivation and enhance the capacity of young people to take actions and implement initiatives on local, regional, national and European level. By doing so, young people will become change makers equipped to advocate and deal with the challenges they face in their communities but also on a European level.
Research has shown that there is a great shrinkage in civic space, youth is being constantly underrepresented, marginalized and have limited access to reach civic space (Deželan, Yurttagüler 2021). Covid-19 has further exacerbated pre-existing inequalities faced by youth and in particular vulnerable and at-risk young people. Recent EYF study “Safeguarding Civic Space for Young People in Europe'' duly noted that ¼ of youth organizations were not fully capable of engaging in advocacy activities, and experienced at least some difficulties in participating in the processes of deliberation and decision making during the pandemic.
Youth participation is an essential part of civic society and personal, political development, at national and EU level. As stated in the Treaty of the European Union and is one of the pillars of the EU Youth Strategy (2019-2027), it is a fundamental human right for young people to have their voice heard, influence and decide on issues that affect them.
EMYS aims to achieve that through the cross-border Sustainability Training, the toolkit with the training material, the Local Advocacy Groups which will be created and trained on a national level, the Public Debates, Consultation Meetings with decision makers and the Youth Networking event, which will conclude with the creation of the EMYS Network Manifesto.
- Create networks and coalitions among youth organizations, young people and activists in youth movements across the EU
- Foster and develop increased opportunities for young people, by supporting them in creating grassroots initiatives and youth-led projects
- Empower marginalized youth and underrepresented youth and improve their capacities to become informed decision makers and change makers in their communities
- Raise the need for awareness, that only through transcultural cooperation we could provide a solution to the global crisis of climate change
- Explore and develop NFE methods and techniques
- Cultivate lobbying and advocacy competencies among young people
- Enhance cross-sector innovation and collaboration with young people
EMYS will engage young people between ages of 18 to 35 years old, with a focus on marginalized groups that experience social, political, and economic discrimination and exclusion. Other target groups include youth ambassadors, youth workers, youth organizations/councils/centers, and youth community movements, policy/decision makers and public organizations.