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EI Ref: RO-21-16-2009-R1

Duration of Service: 6 Months

Period of EVS Service: May 17th, 2008 – November 17th, 2009

Number of Volunteers: 8

Project details Volunteers Activities Volunteers of the month

In the last European Parliament Election in 2004, a percentage of under 50 % of European population took part to the voting process, while the lowest number of participation fell in the group of young voters at the age of 21 to 25.
Although according to various studies the participation in elections increases with age, there is a significant gap between the willingness of young people towards participation as such and the turnout in elections.
Furthermore, an even more remarkable gap between the participation on a national and European level exists.

In the light of the 30th anniversary of direct elections to the European Parliament young people information for increased participation should help overcome this gap and win more young people for their rights and duties as citizens in the European Union.

The importance of involving the younger generation as much as possible in political debate and social decision processes is often underestimated. In current youth studies political involvement is judged as being unimportant by most young people. According to surveys the term “politics” elicits negative associations among the youth. The project need (idea) appeared in the context of the coming elections for the European Parliament that are to take place in all of the Member States this June, 2009. Hence, on recent discussions with the regional authorities, they asked if ARDR could put together a group of volunteers to give assistance in running an Public Relations campaign on the eve of the elections in our Region, and also in the aftermath of the Election day; On the other hand, the project addresses the low interest that youths have in Romania on politics in general and European Union politics in particular. There is an increasing apathy that tends to endanger a whole generation that is to maintain and secure democratic societies. Skepticism, remoteness from the representative democracy institutions and scaring low trust in the public institutions has prompted urgent action to be taken;

The necessity to get involved and take action in what regards the Plan D of the European Commission: Democracy, Dialogue, Debate; basically, it looks to develop the "two-way dialogue" that aims to foster a general and permanent debate on the future of the European Union among people from all walks of life, particularly youths at the regional and local level;

increase volunteers social and personal development, providing them with
opportunities for transversal knowledge and competences (European Union comitology, European Union institutions, advocacy, EU policy cycle management ) and horizontal soft skills such as intercultural learning, multilinguism, European Awareness and other competences to boost their self- confidence.
encourage youngsters participation in debate on EU policies that affect their lives at
the local level, and promote European Active Citizenship;
Contribute to the European Active Citizenship by boosting the participation and active
involvement of young people in their local communities and as part of the EU public dialogue.
Organize an Information Caravan and a Conference on participation in EU policy
making at regional level – South West Oltenia
Stimulate the intercultural learning process and enhance the European Awareness
and Active Participation within the target communities from Oltenia Region.
Promote the EVS programme opportunity for young people as well as organizations
from SW Oltenia
Increase tolerance towards different cultures by learning and accepting the cultural
Encourage the participation of youngsters with fewer opportunities
Widen and strengthen the partnership and co-operation relation in between all project promoters
Hosting communities: volunteers are hosted in Craiova and their activity will take place throughout South West Oltenia Region – various communities – urban as well as rural.

1.CE.S.I.E – Italy

2.Associazione IN-CO – Italy

3.Barcelona Voluntaria – Spain

4.AIPC – Pandora – Spain

5.Civil Society Institute – Armenia

6.Associazione Culturale Marasma – Italy

7.Associazione di Promozione Sociale Joint – Italy

8.IBO Italia – Associazione Italiana Soci Construttori - Italy

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission.
This publication [communication] reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.