European Day 2006 Celebrations
During the week of the 9th of May, JEF-sections throughout Europe organised activities to celebrate this particular day.
Have a look at the different activities that took place in Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Finland, France, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, UK.
Have a look at the previous activities of the sections during the European days in 2003, 2004 and 2005.
JEF Europe: Open Doors Day in the European Parliament
On the 6th of May Jeffers living in Brussels took care of a stand in the Parc Leopold next to the European Parliament. We had games, balloons, Europen puzzle and more serious stuff as the Galaxy Europe live voting and the the European Civil Service Petition.
(By Marieke Ariens, European Movement Belgium)
The European Movement Belgium was represented with two stands on the 6th of may, Europe Day in Brussels. The aim of this day is to meet and discuss with the citizens. The European Institutions opened her doors for everyone who is interested. The European Movement Belgium organised the election of the ‘Belgian European of the year 2006’, distributed their Annual Report, discussed with the public and organised quizzes. Thanks to all the volunteers, the EuropeDay was a big success for the EMB.
(By Iva Dincheva, Secretary General of JEF-Bulgaria)
On the 11th and 12th of May 2006 64 Bulgarian high school students said to Europe: “Here I come!” And they did not only say it, they showed it!
This year JEF-Bulgaria decided to target an even younger group of the Bulgarian society than the usual one - the pupils. In order to raise their awareness about the EU and to attract the attention of the students JEF-BG organized a competition between eight Sofia schools. Every 8-member team competed with the other in an EU-quiz with questions from different areas regarding history, lifestyles, culture of Europe and of course the EU. Another and much more amusing part of the competition was a creative task on “How to present Bulgaria in the EU?” where JEF-BG gave the students the opportunity to be creative and express their ideas and expectations of Bulgaria’s future accession. Giving them an impetus to be active they came up with the important topics like cultural diversity and religious tolerance themselves. The students got acquainted with some of the opportunities that EU programmes like SOCRATES/ERASMUS and YOUTH give to the young people. They also showed interested in the JEF-materials that were distributed.
The Europe celebration in Croatia lasted the whole week starting already on the 4th of May and having the big final on 9th of May. On this day a Euro Tram supported by the European House and filled with JEF Croatia and Slovenia members made a tour around the city. During the previous day, there were street actions, lecures and presentations on the EU.
(Mette Mørk Andersen, international secretary of JEF-Denmark)
Even though many people in Europe might claim otherwise, the weather in Denmark on the 9th of May proved that the EU had behaved well the past year.
JEF-Denmark decided to join the battle for Turkish accession by hosting the event together with TriEU - an organisation for the inclusion of Turkey based under the Danish European Movement, tempting listeners with Turkish delight and EU cake. On that note, we also decided to stress, once again, that the EU is all about solidarity. (Plus some of us had made this fantastic flag for the 1st of May that we were desperate to show again)
Our t-shirts illustrating how our hearts are closely connected to the EU are standard uniform by now. A member of the Danish parliament, Morten Rasmussen, and the former President of JEF-Denmark, Helen Odgaard, held the birthday speeches stressing how the Danish opt-outs are harming Danish international
The European Day in Helsinki was organised by the European Movement (Eurooppalainen Suomi). As its youth organisation, JEF-Finland took part as active organiser in this activity.
(By Katri Tormikoski, Board member of JEF - Eurooppanuoret)
In Tampere we had a "big" event on the Central Market place. We had a tent with restaurants and information stands (European Parliament, Commission, Europe Information, City of Tampere, EURES, etc), as well as a platform where we had program from noon til 8pm. The performers ranged from the local Flamenco group and the English language playschool to various musicians from Tampere region.
Commissaire Olli Rehn also gave a speech on the platform, and we heard the Schuman declaration - translated into the Tampere dialect, which was quite funny. This part of the program seemed to get through to the people better than anything else. The EP Representation also organized a seminar with some Finnish MEP's.
The event was organized by the European Movement in Finland, the European Movement in Tampere, and the Young Europeans in Tampere (=JEF Tampere), together with the City of Tampere, the European Commission Representation in Finland and the European Parliament Representation in Finland.
(By Pauline Gessant, President of JE France)
Activities led by JEF France and its local sections for the 9th of May hapenned in Strassbourg, Nancy, Besancon, Paris, Lyon, Clairmont-Ferrand, Tours, Bordeaux, Lille, Avignon, Rennes and were quite various:
- street stands: JEFers informed passers-by and present our activities and the Petitition for European Civilian service.
- actions in school
- conferences and debates (for example about European cinema)
- radio interview
- special week on www.taurillon.org
(by Liga Grundšteine, president JEF-Latvia)
Erudition competition "Next stop - Europe" final took place in 3rd of May and it was organized in the frames of the European Week in Latvia. Many Europe related events take place in Latvia between 1st and 9th of May every year. And all of these events celebrates the accession of Latvia in the EU as well as the Europen day.
The aim of the erudition competition was to bring Europe closer to young people.
Among the 38 teams that applied for the competition, 6 best teams were selected for the final. The teams consisted of 5 secondary school pupils representing each region of Latvia.
The competition took place in the unordinary way - it included orientation elements. Youngsters visited many different institutions that deals with EU issues (European Commission representation In Latvia, European Union information agency, program "Youth", European Movement in Latvia as well as embassies of European countries, etc). They completed questions as well as creative tasks there.
The winner team from Valmiera will have their price- relaxing in aqua park.
The youngsters were very satisfied about the competition and they got to know lots of new thing that will be useful in their lives as well as they saw the Europe is not so far from them.
(by Vaida Cesnuleviciute, president of JEF-Lithuania)
JEF-Lithuania organized conference-simmulation game for young people. At the beginning of the event there was a presentation about JEF and federalism, later about EU and Euro. After this introduction there was a simmulation game about Euro (as it is the main european topic in Lithuania). Young people could feel like real negotiators, as they represented different EU member states and institutions, which have different opinions about introduction of Euro. After the game there was an interactive quiz about JEF and EU. During the event a lot of leaflets and other prizes with JEF and EU logo were distributed. Evaluation showed only positive impressions of the event:)
(By Daniela Grech, president of JEF Malta)
On Tuesday the 9th of May, JEF-Malta the European Integration Project was commemorated at the University of Malta with the support of 14 youth organisations with different political beliefs, who work to different ends, and who yet all fully believe in the principles and message - that cooperation, listening and understanding can lead to success; that Civil Society, especially Youths have a voice and a say in decision making not only on a local level but also on a European scale; and that all should work for the construction of the Future of Europe together.
Dr. Simon Busuttil MEP and Dr. Joanna Drake head of the European Commission Representation to Malta attended and leant their support and commitment towards the promulgation of the work Civil Society in Malta is endeavouring to do, as well as reiterating the vital importance of cooperation and compromise in working together to build a Europe of the Future.
A large map of Europe was assembled to symbolise this effort, and a Fair was put up to show the efforts of the participant organisations towards this end. The ‘European Citizens’ Initiative’ Petition was also begun in Malta yet again lending to the conviction that the Citizens’ of Europe should have more of a major say in decision making at European level.
The Event was being sponsored by European Movement International, the European Commission – DG Education and Culture and the European Commission Representation to Malta. Informative material was also provided with the aid of Europe Direct, The European Parliament Representation to Malta and Forum Malta in Europe.
In Portugal the European Day WAS celebrated with exhibitions on diversity, multiculturalism and ethnic realities of Europe. The exhibitions was presented in many universities and venues around Lisbon.
The "Young European Romanians" organized a conference on the theme of the accession of Romania to the EU.
In fact, they decided to talk about particular aspects of this process, i.e. the costs and benefits that Romania will encounter after 2007 and the role played by the European Parliament in the Romanian accession to the E.U. They also intended to make some predictions concerning the EC’s up-coming Monitoring Report.
JEF-Romania’s invitation was honored by Mr. Radu Carp (Professor in International Relations and European Studies at the University of Bucharest, adviser at the Romanian Presidency on issues of European Integration) and by Mr. Enrico D’Ambrogio, head of the European Parliament’s Information Bureau in Bucharest. Their interventions were followed by a JEF seminar touching upon the subject: 2007 vs. 2008, which took into account the information JEF Romania had gathered during the conference.
Serbia and Montenegro
(By Igor Jovanovic, JEF Belgrade)
The Street action on 9th May was named “9th May – Europe Day: Give chance to young people”. During action we distributed JEF and UEF leaflets, over 100 brochures about European integrations, TNFs and “Guide through Process of stabilization and association”. Action was real success. It was a nice day and a few hundred people of all ages visited our stand as well as 5 radio stations and 2 TV stations as well. Everybody who visited our stand had a chance to leave a comment on flip-chart. Comments was about Serbia and EU especially considering present situation in our country which is critical these days.
Because of unsatisfactory cooperation of our Government with ICTY (International Crime Tribunal for ex-Yugoslavia wars in the Hague), negotiation on Agreement of Stabilization and Association with European Commission are postponed. That’s why Europe Day in whole Serbia was “celebrated” symbolically and in light of “anti-governmental protests”.
Feedback on this action was positive and will be valuable for our future activities.
On 10th May we organized a panel-discussion “Europe-Federalism-Dream that might come true”. 30 participants talked about federalism in multicultural communities and current process of Serbian Euro-integration and their expectations about it.
(By Mitja Kandare, president of JEF-Slovenia)
JEF Slovenia organized a day-long meeting on May 6 for its members and other young people coming from all over Slovenia. The main purpose of the meeting was training on argumentation and debate in the morning (with a professional rhetoric trainer), and a serious of small group debates on the future of EU in the afternoon. The day-long seminar ended with a joint evening event. The same group of young people will gathered again on 9 May to spray the streets of Ljubljana with supportive messages in support and honouring of the 2006 Europe Day.
The debate on the 6th of May was very important for our section, since we have to meet on a daily basis with people, who don’t approve Europe that we want – finally united! The professional rhetoric trainer represented many different ways how to persuade people that our beliefs are legitimate and essential for our future and also taught us about different models how to be more persuasive than the opponent on the other side of the table. The topic of the discussion was the status of Kosovo that is of course in Balkan a big issue.
In London and Edinbourgh a huge variety of actions aimed at all age groups will take place. There will be face paiting, balloons and T-shirts for children, Cafe Europe and university discussions for students and street actions for everyone.
(By Guy Bromley, International Officer JEF Edinburgh/Campaigns Officer JEF UK)
JEF Edinburgh had a Cafe Europe which took place today on the topic of "Scotland's role as a regional player in Europe" and had two speakers: Kezia Dugdale- Prospective Scottish Parliamentary Candidate for the Lothians List and Kenny Young, selected as Labour candidate for NE Fife, as well as being Chair of Scottish Labour Students and Vice-Chair of Labour Students UK. We had lively and exciting debate, showing that people were really engaging with Europe in the week of May 9th.