On 28th June – 01 August, ACP YPN won a place at the Youth Forum Academy’s 2016 training in Paris. Participating in the Youth Forum Academy 2016 was a concrete step for ACP YPN and European Youth Forum to show EU and ACP leaders that youth are making Article 26 of the joint EU-ACP partnership agreement work.
The Academy offered ACP YPN the opportunity to catalyse and refine our efforts to ‘Empower, Mobilise and Connect’ (the motto of #YFJAcademy 2016), and to participate in five key training activities:
(i) ACP YPN took part to continue our advocacy on youth and SDGs by being part of the ‘Participation to sustainable development goals’ workshop.We have already contributed an article on ‘youth and SDGs’ to the EYF Yo!Mag; we have presented on the topic at the ACP Roundtable on Inter-Regional Cooperation for Agenda 2030 and we have been on two panels on the topic with the European Economic and Social Committee, and UNDP and Committee of the Regions for European Development Days.
(ii) The workshop on ‘Internal Communication’ offered us key training on best practice and ‘dos and don’ts’ to foster positive internal communication. This was vital for us as a small organisation with limited human resources and lots of communication to manage!
(iii) Attending the workshop on ‘Social media’ helped us greatly with our external communication, especially for interaction with our members spread all over the world.
(iv) As a relatively new organisation to the youth policy ecosystem, the workshop on ‘youth participation’ gave us a better understanding of opportunities to concretise our understanding of participation and strategically locate our organisation within this.
(v) Due to the very nature of our network, bringing together a diverse range of members – nationality, colour, ethnicity, religion, ability or disability – gaining a better understanding of ‘Anti-discrimination legislation (EU and national levels)’ was very useful for all our activities and outreach.
Overall, the Academy offered us an unique opportunity at a critical stage in our organisations’ development to catalyse and refine our efforts to ‘Empower, Mobilise and Connect.‘ It was also a unique opportunity to showcase how ACP YPN is ’empowering, mobilising and connecting’ young people through its advocacy that the EU and the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) group of states, use Article 26 of their legally binding agreement, the Cotonou Partnership Agreement on ‘youth issues’.
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