European Youth Event

Date

A great and inspiring intergenerational experience

One of my personal highlights this year was the European Youth Event, an event that took place in Strasbourg from 4 October to 10 October 2021 and attracts thousands of young people to Strasbourg every two years. Ultimately, the event is intended to establish contact between MEPs, who often seem so far away, and the young people of our Union. After our weekend together in Strasbourg, I can report that our young people stand more than ever for a new departure for the EU, that they, regardless of their age, already know very well what our common future should look like and what is needed to achieve it. For my part, I was impressed and delighted by the energy and positive aura that surrounded this event in general and "my" group in particular.

I was particularly pleased that my group consisted of members of the Black Lives Matter movement in Nuremberg, who have done incredible things for the identities of Black people in Germany and the world in the last year through their media and public presence. At this point I would like to thank you for this with all my conviction, by all means continue on this path! The group's visit to Strasbourg was also a complete success from my point of view. At my invitation, the participants took part in a panel discussion on the topic "What is the Future of the EU - Africa Relationship" and were greeted with a standing ovation by those present. The questions, suggestions and sometimes clear criticism of the EU's policies were also clear testimonies to the experience and expertise that the group already possesses despite its young age.

That same evening, we attended a dinner of the group "Diaspora Vote", a movement that has accompanied me my entire parliamentary life and that is dedicated to helping people from the African diaspora to get into positions of political power. Again, it shows how important networking within a group really is. Many of the participants sat for the first time in their lives in a group of people who are not only majority Black and have academic backgrounds, but share the same goals and visions. I considered the whole time I spent with these great and inspiring young people an absolute privilege and I draw from this experience new momentum for my work in the European Parliament and for a future that offers the same opportunities for people of any colour, religion or sexual identity. 

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