This week partners met for the first time in Gdansk, Poland for a kick-off meeting of the project “Strengthening civil society rights by information access for European youth” or SIA4Y. The idea of this project was born after the official Europe for Citizens “Making the Waves” seminar in Riga 2017 and includes mainly Baltic Sea region countries, but due to a high level of competence in the specific field partner from Belgium is also part of consortia.
As the basis of a strong, properly functioning democratic state is transparency, it is very important to educate youth regarding this issue and provide tools and methods for monitoring and accessing public information. The societal activity that this project aims to achieve serves as an important tool towards building accountability of public institutions and civic engagement in the decision-making processes of states and the European Union.
The main objective of this project is to increase the level of awareness, knowledge, and ability to use the right of access to public information and support freedom of information among youth. The project will contribute to increasing of the level of understanding and activity of young citizens regarding public monitoring of state institutions and local government. The aim of the project activities is to enhance civic engagement on various levels – methods used in this project will rise awareness and develop youth’s abilities for accessing and monitoring public information on local (municipal), national and also international (EU) level.
Project activities will include 5 local events in each of the partner countries and 2 international conventions. The focus of the local activities will be on access to public information, stimulation of youth e-participation, participatory budgeting, media involvement and tools for monitoring of public institutions. Events will include the format of round-table discussion and workshops to exchange youth’s views about democratic participation, freedom of information, and access to public information. The participants will have a chance to take leadership roles, to be active and challenge others to do the same. The two international conventions – organized in Riga and Brussels – will put emphasis on best-practice sharing and bench-marking, as well as presenting two important documents that will be created after the local activities – Code of Good Practice containing guidelines on how to ensure innovative and non-formal civic education of youth in the context of access to public information and report of prioritized transparency needs at EU level which will help to plan future work and possibly new initiatives in this field.
- Polskie Towarzystwo Ekonomiczne Oddzial w Gdansku – Poland
- Social Innovation Centre – Latvia
- WeCitizens – WijBurgers – NousCitoyens – Belgium
- Aktiivinen Eurooppalainen Kansalainen Suomi Ry – Finland
- Stowarzyszenie Gmin RP Euroregion Baltyk – Poland
- Eesti Naisuurimus- ja Teabekeskus – Estonia
The content of this publication is sole responsibility of the project coordinator and may not always reflect the views of the European Commission or the National Agency.