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Cluj-Napoca is European Youth Capital in 2015


Cluj-Napoca was conferred the honorary title of European Youth Capital in 2015. The decision was taken by the European Youth Forum in partnership with other European youth organizations and institutions on November 24th, 2012 in Maribor, Slovenia, a city that will be the European Youth Capital in 2013.Out of the 12 cities that applied from across the continent, Cluj-Napoca (Romania), Ivanovo (Russia), Varna (Bulgaria) and Vilnius (Lithuania) have made it to the shortlist of this year’s competition. In the final stage of the assessment the four candidate cities presented economic, social and cultural initiatives that would support positive outlook for the youth.

The European Youth Capital is a title awarded to a European city for a period of a year with the aim of propelling the development of the youth from that city under the framework of a multilateral action plan with cultural, social, political and economic output. The program puts an emphasis on ensuring better perspectives for the youth on the long run, not only throughout the year of implementation. Another important aspect of the European Youth Capital initiative is encouraging the youth to be informed and get actively involved in society. Tourism and increased international presence are other important benefits to consider when a city being named a European Youth Capital.

The concept of European Youth Capital was first introduced in 2009. The first city who was awarded with this title is the city of Rotterdam (the Netherlands). In 2010 Turin (Italy) followed the line. Last year Anvers (Belgium) was the European Youth Capital, followed by Braga (Portugal) in 2012, Maribor (Slovenia) in 2013 and Thessaloniki in 2014.

According to youthforum.org, ‘Cluj-Napoca presented SHARE, a strong, clear, solid, diverse and exciting program. SHARE aims to promote sharing space, culture, power, work, joy, vision and common European values, addressing topics such as empowerment, advocacy, mobility, structured dialogue and youth information. With the added value of a strong focus on the European dimension and close cooperation with universities, civil society and other local partners, Cluj-Napoca prepares itself for further fostering permanent consultation processes on youth-related affairs.’

The jury deliberations have never been as intense, the decision never so difficult’, said Peter Matjašič, President of the European Youth Forum. ‘All shortlisted candidate cities competing for the title provided strong applications and promising visions on how to implement European youth policies and foster participation of young people’.

In times of crisis, where cuts are the norm, we wish to particularly congratulate Cluj-Napoca and the other cities for their commitment to investing in youth, that shows a strong vision in young people as the key to development of their local reality’, concluded Peter Matjašič, President of the European Youth Forum in a press release published by the European Youth Forum.

 Source: youthforum.org. Picture: wikipedia.org

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