YEU makes more than a baby step for equality
In previous years, YEU families have been growing and some of our volunteers, trainers, organizers have become parents.
Although becoming a parent is always an amazing news especially when you see people meeting in YEU events, falling in love and creating families, we have seen that sometimes our new parents, especially mothers have been put in a dilemma – should they still apply for events as trainers, organizers or participants? Are they giving enough when representing YEU because some believe that mothers with small babies should stay at home?
Yes, even in youth work which should be an open and safe environment for people of all walks of life, YEU representatives, specifically young mothers, have been faced with questions such as - are you able to represent your organization/our platform since you have a small child?
And when they do represent YEU or other youth organizations – how will they do it? Can a child be alone while mom is at the meeting? Is there a baby cot, a feeding chair, where to change the baby/child, where to breastfeed and how to pay the costs of a person that will come with you to help you with all this? Interestingly, it is rare that costs of accompanying person are covered by organizations, platforms and institutions.
Now, YEU together with its Member Organizations has decided to change things. In General Assembly of YEU our policy paper on Gender Matters has been amended with following:
D) USE OF gender watch methodology
In order to be able map the situation in your organizations and during your activities, we strongly recommend the use of Gender watch Methodology. Using this, you can later identify better the strengths and weaknesses related to Gender that take place in your organization and therefore act upon them directly.
E) SUPPORT BENIFICIARIES WITH SMALL CHILDREN
When a beneficiary (staff, participants etc) participate in activities outside your location (City, Country) or you receive a beneficiary (participants), in both cases, with minors (baby, toddler) it is strongly recommended that you offer a payed person or volunteer to support with the childcare. At the same time, related to reimbursement, such cases should be fully reimbursed.
YEU is proudly supporting young women to speak out and be active, young parents, especially young mothers to participate and never be in a position to question themselves if they can, if they are giving enough or if they should choose between their children and work. Yes, you CAN!
All of the love of the world goes to Simona with Lukas Stavra and Leja, Sonja with Nada and Drina, Ieva with Riccardo and Ilaria with Elia and the new baby on the way – you have paved the road with many baby steps for stronger and more inclusive YEU. This is because of you. You are making all of us proud!
As our dear General Assembly Chair Ivana said: “I am sure that nobody has nothing against this amendment”, the decision has been made unanimously.
Congratulations YEU – you have just grown stronger.
YEU Secretary General
*photo shows the Governing Board meeting with Simona as treasurer and YEU representative in the Bureau in Advisory Council on Youth and her son, Lukas Stavra (10 months) in hands of Nela, president of the board. Ostia, Rome, August 2014.