The European Committee of the Regions (CoR) is launching its 2023 call for application for the Young Elected Politician Programme (YEP), opening the doors for the first time for young local and regional representatives from EU candidate countries to join the YEP initiative this year.
Since its launch at the 8th European Summit of Regions and Cities in 2019, the YEP Programme has been an integral part of the Committee's commitment to meaningful youth participation, allowing young representatives from across Europe to engage with the Union's democratic life and bring diverse views from European regions and cities in key events. The conclusions of the Conference on the Future of Europe as well as the European Charter for Youth and Democracy, launched in December 2022, both stress the need to further involve youth within the EU decision-making process.
The President of the European Committee of the Regions, Vasco Alves Cordeiro (PT/PES), stressed the importance of the YEP Programme, stating that: "Youth participation is an integral part of the DNA of the European Committee of the Regions. Regions and cities have always been pioneers in ensuring meaningful youth engagement and this is also reflected within the European Committee of the Regions with the successful initiative of the Young Elected Politicians programme. I am proud that this year we are enlarging it for the first time to candidate countries, as I believe that we can only benefit from young leaders working hand in hand to pave Europe's future. This is also part of our support to Ukraine in its accession to the EU. The European project needs champions and young people can be those champions. With this initiative, the Committee of the Regions, by going beyond its members, is their first ally."
The call for application to join the YEP Programme in 2023 is now open. Young local and regional politicians have until the 10 April 2023 to send their application.
What is the YEP programme?
The Young Elected Politicians programme (YEPs) is a network of representatives who are no older than 40 and hold a mandate at regional or local level in the EU. Up to date, more than 500 young politicians have joined it since its creation in 2019. For the first time since its creation, the YEP programme will also be open to EU candidate countries, allowing Young Elected Politicians from Ukraine, Moldova, Albania, the Republic of North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, and Türkiye to engage in the Union's functioning.
The YEP programme offers an opportunity to build a network with other local and regional representatives, exchange best practices, obtain information on EU legislation and EU funding opportunities, contribute to the work of the Committee of the Regions, and to meet and discuss debate with CoR members and other local, regional and European representatives.
Selected YEPs will have access to:
- CoR activities and events, including plenary sessions;
- YEPcommunity.eu, the online platform of the YEP programme, a place for exchanging information and experience with fellow YEPs and YEP alumni;
- seminars, events and consultations upon invitation;
- online networking opportunities with members of the YEP community;
- trainings courses on EU topics.
In addition, selected YEPs will have the opportunity to participate in various communication activities related to the programme.
To apply, read carefully the call for the YEP 2023 Programme and fill in the application form.
For more information on the YEP programme and its past activities, visit the YEP dedicated webpage or download the 2023 press kit.
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