Towards an ever greater European Youth Forum!

With great pride, I inform you that I have accepted the nomination of FYEG – Federation of the Young European Greens for the Board of the European Youth Forum for the term 2017 – 2018. In November 2016, I will stand for election at the General Assembly of the Youth Forum in Varna, Bulgaria. I will actively seek dialogue with the YFJ Member Organisations on their needs and aspirations for the next two years. With their support, I want to amplify our common voice for the fundamental rights of young people.

In my life, I have learned that in order to reach our aims, we need to be inclusive, diverse and cooperative. If elected, I want to broaden the movement that is the European Youth Forum. The less empowered half of whom we claim to represent is non-organized young people. They need a stronger voice and we need to develop our platform so they can be heard. By doing that, we strengthen our claim of representing all young people in Europe.

I will also push for the inclusion of disadvantaged young people. The Youth Forum’s gender balance policy is an example, and I want to build on it in order to ensure greater diversity. By creating more space in our working procedures, we can include underrepresented young people. I want the Forum to be a place where we empower specific groups of disadvantaged youth to speak for themselves.

And lastly, cooperation is the key. I believe we can improve our work by engaging with our allies. As young people, we are diverse. We can ally with all effective organizations that stand for the rights of specific groups of young people. Childrens’ rights organisations are a natural ally, as they see all their work for childrens’ protection end abruptly at the age of eighteen. And given our priorities for the next two years, I am very keen on finding partners as well on the content that we work on. Together, we stand strong!

As a young gay person who lived in a homeless shelter eight years ago, I discovered that disadvantaged young people need allies. I am now one of them. And in fighting for youth rights over the past years, I have met many more! I want all young people to be represented, and hence I stand for a more diverse, inclusive and cooperative platform. We will be stronger together in the fight for youth rights. And together, I will relentlessly work for a Europe where young people can decide upon their own destiny, develop themselves to their full potential and participate fully in our societies!

With your support, I will devote myself to that with all my energy for the next two years! #ForYouthRights


Sebastiaan Rood