EU Strategy for the Alpine Region gives youth a voice

Climate change, decline in biodiversity and increasing traffic congestion in Alpine valleys: the Alpine space is facing a multitude of challenges that require cooperation across the Alps. The Alpine regions are working on joint projects in the EU Strategy for the Alpine Region (EUSALP) to make the Alpine space resilient and fit for the future. To do this as sustainably as possible, they are counting on the support of the next generation. 

Young people between 18 and 29 who live in one of the 48 EUSALP regions in Germany, France, Italy, Austria, Slovenia, Switzerland or Liechtenstein can apply to join the 3rd EUSALP Youth Council until 13 May 2023. The Youth Council consists of 28 members, four members from each Alpine country, who sit on the Youth Council for one year and can renew for another year. After the second year of its mandate, which began on 1 July 2022, the Youth Council renews 20 of its seats on 1 July 2023.

Cross-border platform for youth empowerment

The EUSALP Youth Council provides a platform for the participation of young people in all EUSALP bodies. As an official EUSALP institution, it ensures that their ideas and viewpoints are heard and taken into account. Youth Council participants get involved in the development of alpine-wide policies and projects that address the most pressing challenges in the Alpine region. They can propose concrete actions, projects and topics, present ideas to politicians from the EUSALP states and regions and raise awareness for the specificities of their regions at the European level. The young people organize themselves and learn to engage in a democratic process across linguistic and cultural differences. In turn, EUSALP learns from the youth and gathers new ideas from those who will live in the Alps in the future. 

The Youth Council meets four to five times per mandate in the Alpine region and collaborates during the year through virtual communication tools in thematic groups to develop concrete activities. Youth Council representatives also sit at the table in all EUSALP bodies. In the Youth Council, which has been in office since July 2021, the young people engage for sustainable mobility, network with other youth initiatives, work on future prospects in peripheral Alpine regions and raise awareness of the natural and cultural heritage of the Alps.

Applications until 13 May 2023

Interested young people have until 13 May to apply for a place on the 3rd EUSALP Youth Council via Youth Council members will be selected at random from all applications received. As the Youth Council aims to reflect the diversity in the Alpine Space, the random selection will be weighted to ensure a balanced composition of young people from the seven EUSALP countries, from different regions, of different genders, with different educational backgrounds and with or without experience in youth organizations. The EUSALP states and regions cover the travel costs for meetings and events attended by the Youth Council members and provide them with advice and support.

The Youth Council is financed by the Interreg Alpine Space project „Support EUSALP”, whose lead partner is the Provence Alpes Côte d’Azur Region. Within the framework of this project, the Region Bourgogne-Franche-Comté is responsible for the youth dynamic. Moreover, in 2023, the Swiss Presidency of EUSALP will also give great importance to the investment of young people in the Alpine region. 

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