Between 27-31 July DYPALL Network took part in a training “Youth Friendly Cities on a table Exchange, Inspire, Train!” hosted by Nausika Fundacja Edukacyjna in Rabka-Zdrój, Poland. The activity gathered almost 30 municipal representatives, youth workers, officials, activists, experts, students, decision-makers and young volunteers from 6 countries around the idea of making their cities more youth-friendly.
After setting up a common ground, defining quality youth work, participatory youth policy-making and exploring existing labels and certificates of youth-friendly cities, the group looked at several cities from that perspective:
- Kraków, Lublin, Rabka-Zdrój (Poland)
- Lisbon, Porto, Portimão, Faro, Valongo (Portugal)
- Cluj-Napoca, Sfântu Gheorghe (Romania)
- Ljublana, Ajdovscina, Kanal, Brda (Slovenia)
- Atri, Padua (Italy)
- Kumanovo (North Macedonia)
We could have noticed different cultural backgrounds, legislative traditions, various problems and different ways of defining social problems. This lesson gave us a wide perspective on various dimensions, in which cities can be youth-friendly and how do we define their youth-friendliness.
We defined the following dimensions of youth friendliness:
- labour maket,
- inclusion and equality,
- civic values and youth participation,
- communication and information,
- youth work system.
What do cities have to do, to become youth-friendly? Develop structures of communication, cooperation, and co-management, youth-check all municipal policies, actively support young people in their development, transition to adult systems and prepare the conditions in which they will be welcomed to stay and build their lives. This includes a vast variety of fields, which cities and towns have to define themselves to prioritize their actions.
In order to help cities in doing that, we have started to develop a set of standards, practices and recommendations for the youth policy on the municipal level, which will be further developed online and finalized in November 2021. The publication will be ready and disseminated among the municipalities at the beginning of 2022.
The meeting was supported by Erasmus+ Strategic Partnership in the Youth Sector project “Mapping best practices for youth-friendly cities” coordinated by Nausika Foundation from Kraków, Poland.