TOG and YEU show the way through 'Youth Volunteering in the Changing Europe'
"Youth Volunteering in the Changing Europe", a three-day seminar, took place between the 24th and 28th of November 2011 and brought together 51 young people from 20 countries with a purpose of sharing different approaches to volunteerism as a tool for youth participation in a changing Europe.
Thus, participants from Spain, Lithuania, Germany, Romania, Italy, Cyprus, Estonia, Poland, Sweden, Greece, Portugal, Malta, Belgium, Turkey, Albania, Bosnia Herzegovina, Serbia, Macedonia, Croatia, Kosovo UN and Montenegro gathered in Istanbul, Turkey to examine the role of youth volunteering, the shifting reality of 21st century Europe. The seminar was organized by Turkish youth organisation (Member Organisation of YEU) TOG, with the assistance of the YEU International Network with the primary aim to gather different opinions about the value of youth volunteering in building competences of young people and its contribution to the European Citizenship and peace.
TOG has been working especially hard to spread the idea of volunteerism amongst young people living in Turkey since 2003. Young people volunteer in self-created social projects. Some young people volunteer with the purpose of developing their own skills, while others volunteer to provide help to other people. This duality of self-serving versus altruistic reasons for volunteering was discussed during the seminar. Furthermore, the seminar promoted the values of the European Year of Volunteering campaign and created a space for participants to share their experiences on youth volunteering and active youth participation in a democratic life from a local level to an international seminar.
While discussing the issues of volunteerism, European citizenship and the role of youth participation through youth organisations, the participants drafted recommendations and a declaration, addressing them to youth organisations, policy makers and authorities. The outcomes of the event emphasize the importance of youth volunteering through youth organisations and call upon the support from the authorities and governments of youth organizations.
TOG Head of International Relations Department