So, you're a young EU citizen. You may be an activist, or just kind of a passionate politics fan.
Maybe you just don't want to get involved in all the apparently intricate ways and terms and controversial discussions that should somehow make things in this system move.
When you mention politics to most young people they might just ignore you. Some will tell you that nowadays politicians do not give us any future but still those same young people have no plan or will to change anything.
Is every young person like that? NO, I am not. My colleagues and friends are not.
And here's the thing: intensively staring at the mess in your room won't make it look any more tidy. Yes, you may not care, but what if. I know we all hate these what ifs, cause they make us uselessly overthink all the time, but this particular one is pointed towards the future, and maybe a surprising one. It doesn't look at the past mistakes, but at the possibilities that are yet to come.
I mean I get it, I'm probably sounding like I want to be the bigger person and inspire youngsters and whatnot. But what if you could go to another country and meet others who share your opinion or are even in contrast to it, what if you could become friends and make memories and experiences and pictures of moments you won't forget because they're shaping your story. What if you realized that even though we may and maybe should be different, we're still in the same boat and we've always been; what if you'd realized this already and decided to try and raise your voice, either through a megaphone, or a post on the Internet, or a little talk with someone, a class discussion or by filling out a ballot paper. Because this is in your and in the organizations' interest, so why wouldn't they listen. And if they don't want to, they'll learn.
Personally, I didn’t care much about politics a year ago either if you'd asked me. I am in the Erasmus+ project and we're dealing with the topic of “The Image of the European Union in the post-truth Era”. Our first thought was, well… Boring. But we wanted to travel so we joined the project.
That’s how we started doing research about the EU, our politicians and the opportunities that the EU gives us. Now that we know about things like the Interrail Pass, Erasmus, various EU founds, we've gotten more into it. It’s about attitude and habits. Not only working in the European Parliament will bring you a bright future. We can have one also in our own countries. That’s why we need to react with what we have and the instruments that the European Union gives us to let our country and citizens be the best they can.
If we try to work together we can reach a bigger range of young people and follow their interests. So take the courage to participate in projects like this to define your own future.
That's why, as an EU citizen, you can participate, you can take part in youth exchanges and projects like this one (and I swear it can be kinda fun), shape your life in your country as much as you can, and help other young people, the ones who've already been elected to high positions and are having their say, because as much as we know how corrupt human beings can be, these people who are representing you know where you come from and are fighting your same fight.
photo taken during project workshop