Youth engagement for development in the Danube Region
The Danube river region has represented throughout history a cradle of civilization and of cultural, social and economic development. The choice for the motto of the European Union’s Strategy for the Danube Region (EUSDR) was obvious and it transmitted an important message of hope in order to marshal people and resources in the region towards the direction of development: “Danube, the river of opportunities”.
Moreover, on a more personal level, the motto of the EUSDR has pushed me towards an ambitious goal, that of creating a youth network in the region. Having this goal in mind, I, along with a group of likeminded individuals, have launched the Danube Youth Alliance in Bucharest. Its first and most important goal is to help the youth to be proactive in their own development. In order to do so, we have created a series of various educational projects focusing on legal and civic education that we implemented in Bucharest with the purpose of expanding our horizons and creating bridges of collaboration with other youth organizations in the region.
In addition, the purpose of investing all manner of resources extends beyond helping the youth to develop themselves, but to thereby ensure the development of the region. Let me be more specific – in a context where more and more people are changing perspectives inside their own country, it is crucial to foster a generation of educated youth that have personally and directly felt the benefits of a regional community. In order to do so, they have to travel, to meet new people from the region and to participate in activities that develop them and which foster the realization of the necessity of a connected and powerful community.
In our opinion, the solution to develop such an interconnected community is to create a network of Danube Youth Centers and Clubs that will aim to continuously promote youth initiatives and the opportunities of the region, create bridges of communication between the youth in the region and stakeholders and common projects.
Ultimately, creating a network of Danube Youth Centers will develop the young generation and consequently the region in order to achieve a more prosperous, inclusive and interconnected Danube community.
— Eric Bartha