>>> What is Europe Day?
The 9th of May campaigning week is every year the occasion to bring Europe closer to its citizens. Therefore every year on this day, JEF and UEF members take Europe to the streets, encourage discussion on European Union issues and make everybody feel the European spirit.
This year was no exception! JEF-Sections around Europe mobilized themselves to share their enthusiasm in street actions, parties and much more! In this page you will find pictures and short descriptions of what went on in each section, but if you want to go back in time just have a look at what JEF was up to in 2003 and 2004!
9th of May in Barcelona
(by Peter Matjasic, JEF-Catalunya Secretariat)
Members of JEF-Catalunya have conducted a street-action on the main square in front of the Cathedral in the old town of Barcelona.
The self-made EURO-PUZZLE served as a very good medium to attract people’s attention and it was fascinating to see that people of all ages and from various parts of Europe (as is usual in Barcelona!) were interested in participating and building our common continent. Apart from putting the puzzle together, they also needed to place correctly on the map the names of all the states of the European continent, the capitals and languages spoken in Europe, all written down in the original, Spanish and Catalan.
We gave away loads of promo material from the European Parliament, JEF-Europe and JEF-Catalunya postcards and leaflets and discussed about whatever issue people were interested in – mainly about the Constitution. We had a group of French teenagers on a school trip that really got involved and will surely tell their parents to vote in favour of the ConstitutionJ. Furthermore, a Dutch couple was very willing to listen to our point of view about the Constitution, and even took a picture to take home and tell all their friends that a Slovenian was asking them to vote in favour of the European Constitution on their holiday in Barcelona, since their decision will affect me as well.
What better way to celebrate the Day of Europe?
Well, perhaps with a bit of champagne and glamour as wellJ. In the afternoon members of JEF-Catalunya also participated at the official reception in the common European house of the representations of the EC and EP, where the former Spanish foreign minister, the 80-year old Señor Morán, who signed the Accession Agreement of Spain to the EC exactly 20 years ago, gave a rare historical insight in the difficult negotiations with France and expressed his hopes for a positive outcome of the up-coming referendums on the Constitution across Europe.
9th of May in Nis, Serbia & Montenegro
The brand new JEF section in Nis, Serbia & Montenegro decided to celebrate the 9th of May with a great party in which flyers and other promotional materials were distributed and the organisation was introduced to the many who attended.
The party was a great success, and there is a promise from the section that many more will follow ...!
9th of May in Ljubljana, Slovenia
(from Marko Javorsek, JEF-Slovenia President)
The 9th of May activities were really great. On the 4th we were in Maribor where we had lectures in a high school and an information stand. Our stand made the news, although it is in Slovenian!
On 5th we were in Koper. We had lectures in a high school and a round table.
It wes great and we had an article in a regional newspaper and then we were on the news on a regional TV station.
On 8th we were in Zagreb, Croatia. Together with the Croatian team we had
information stand which was interesting because we had chance to talk to croatian
On 9th we had information stand in Ljubljana which was visited by quite a lot of young people and in the afternoon we participated in a public debate with really known people on the topic "One year after enlargement" and my statement was on the most known news show on the national TV.
9th of May in Riga, Latvia
(From Liga Grudnsteine, JEF-Latvia)
Music, soap bubbles, clouds, sunset and the view of Old Riga, young people united with the idea of Europe...
This is how the event "Europe in the sky", organized by Club "The House" (JEF Latvia) that took place on the 9th of May 2005 looked like. The event took place on a roof in Old Riga. The main goal of the event was to celebrate Europe Day in the unusual surroundings and socializing within the members of other NGOs in Latvia. There was a concert of one of the famous youth bands in Latvia called Antro'n'out. The event was great and it brought an artistic and creative atmosphere in the organization’s activities.
9th of May in Bucharest, Romania
(from the JEF-Romania Team)
Like all the JEFers, we celebrated Europe’s Day in our home country, Romania. As last year we organized an internal event with debates and contests, we decided that this time we should do something more visible. JEF Romania, in partnership with AEGEE - Bucharest, managed to put together an event called „Europe’s Day – Think, Listen and Enjoy”.
The fifth edition of this event was organized in Bucharest on the 9th and 10th of May. This year, the theme of the event focused on promoting Bucharest as a future capital of the European Union. The conference’s goal was to inform the young generation about the European citizenship and the concept of Europe without borders.
One of the debates held during these days discussed the European views regarding Bucharest. Invited as a speaker, the Head of the Delegation of the European Commission in Bucharest, Jonathan Scheele, talked to the students about the importance of the admission process, and also about the European values such as: respect for human rights, the rights of minorities, the principles of a European capital. He pointed out the cultural values of the Romanian capital, highlighting its status as a center of culture and good education and its ability to compete with other important cities.
In the end, after two days of conferences and seminars, a party was held at the Students’ Cultural Club of Bucharest, where both organizers and participants had a good time enjoying the European Night.
9th of May in Macedonia
This year JEF-Macedonia was only partner of European Movement in Macedonia about celebration of 9th of May in the project “Festival of Europe - 9th of May 2005”. The coordinator of JEF-Skopje section, Biljana Kjulavkovska, was the person directly involved in realization of this huge project. In coordination whit Biljana and European Movement we, as JEF-Macedonia, were directly involved in organization and realization in different projects in Macedonia, such as the “Youth Educational-Recreational European Camp”, panel discussions in six towns, a European Student Seminar at the University of Southeastern Europe in Tetovo, an International Conference in the Parliament of the Republic of Macedonia, and a huge spectacle in the City Square in Skopje.
JEF-Macedonia was also involved in a radio programme for the 9th of May which was broadcasted on five radio stations in Macedonia, with the name “Altiero Spinelli: The architect of the European federation” (for the curious the link is: http://jef.dobroutro.com/radio/spinelli.wma and http://jef.dobroutro.com/radio/spinelli.rm - windows media and real player versions).
In addition to this, workshops entitled “European Class” were organized in six towns and fifteen schools on Europe Day.
The impact of all these activities was great, with many thousands of people directly and indirectly reached through the various events and programmes. A link to the photo gallery of JEF-Macedonia will follow soon!
9th of May activities in Valletta, Malta
(from Melvin Mizzi, Secretary General, JEF-Malta)
For Europe Day celebrations JEF-Malta teamed up with two international: European Movement and AEGEE. The main idea was to focus on European citizenship and what it means to be European. A second aim was to promote and raise interest in the constitution for Europe.
It was decided that children should also be targeted for the Europe Day Events being organised, and thus particular focus was placed on such through the means of a Drawing Competition entitled ‘My Europe’, this due to the fact that it was felt by all, that children are the voices of innovation. Children’s thoughts and ideas are uninhibited by the barriers of conventionality, and would thus provide a clear vision of our present unmarred by prejudice and discrimination.
In all, 9 schools participated, 3 of which from the Island of Gozo, presenting a total of 287 drawings from children aged between 6 and 11 years of age
Apart from the drawing competition, we set up a stand in Valletta, the capital city. Here a Euro-Quiz was held aimed at youths. Prizes were awarded to those who obtained the highest score by replying to multiple choice questions. Other entertainment was organised such as face painting for children and live music. Younger participants were also invited to participate in the creation of a collage (made by sticking coloured paste onto a board and forming the motto ‘Unity in Diversity’). The office of Information on the EU was contacted and panels about the constitution were set up under the tent for easy viewing. This event was set up in order to capture the widest audience reach possible. Therefore something for everyone was organised.
9th of May in Chisinau, Moldova
(from Natalia Iachimov, Vice-President, JEF-Moldova)
JEF-Moldova wants to build a society based on European values. Thus, in respect of Europe
Day we have organized a series of info stands in the most important cities and educational
institutions of Moldova and a national conference named "Moldova a Member of the EU-
Dream or Reality?".
The conference gathered 25 motivated young people from different regions of our beautiful
country who were given the possibility to express their opinion on the subject of the
European integration of the Republic of Moldova, and also to discuss this issue with our
special guest Mr. David Johnson, special representative of the European Commission.
JEF-Moldova's activities were financial supported by the European Movement and OSCE
Mission to Moldova.
9th of May in Sofia, Bulgaria
(from Iva Dincheva, Secretary General, JEF-Bulgaria)
For the 9th of May members of EYM - Bulgaria (JEF-BG) organised and participated in a public
debate and a street action in Sofia. The debate in Sofia was on The Challenges Facing Bulgaria
after the Signature of the Accession Treaty and was organised together with UEF and Europe
House - Sofia. The main topics discussed were as follows:
- The Refore of the Educational System and the Lisbon Strategy
- The Challenges and Opportunities for Bulgarian Economy
- Justice and Home Affairs
- The impact of an eventual "NO" Vote in the Referenda on the European Constitution in France
and the Netherlands on Bulgaria and the EU.
This year we gathered many young people interested in Bulgaria's accession to the EU and European
integration as a whole, who were able to express their views on the topics. We have invited speakers
from the Bulgarian Chamber of Industry and the Bulgarian Parliament who had the chance to present
their vision of how the processes should go on. During the event the annual "Contribution of the year
for Europe" was awarded by Mrs Carmen Gonzalves, Deputy Head of Mission of the Royal Dutch Embassy,
and the results from the contest "Young Bulgarians in Europe" was announced. The winner is Dessislava
Georgieva, European Studies student at the University of Russe, Bulgaria, who had sent us a project for a
stamp presenting in an original way some of the symbols of Europe.
The street action was co-organised with IFLRY as they had an international seminar in Sofia at the same time.
Accompanied by a great media and public interest of EYM-Bulgaria (JEF-BG) and IFLRY were giving out
brochures and talking to people on how they see Europe Day and what does it mean to them.