The purpose of the meeting was to build the capacity of the Member Organisations (MOs), by sharing how they have been affected by shrinking democratic spaces and to brainstorm ideas on how the Youth Forum and its MOs can contribute to safeguarding (youth) civic space.
In the beginning of the event, YFJ presented their latest study on Safeguarding Civic Space for Young People in Europe.
The study shows that 1/3 of youth organisations across Europe face difficulties when trying to participate in policy deliberation and decision-making processes.
YMCA Europe has been represented at this workshop by Eliza Vas, member of the Youth Policy Group.
During the discussions, Eliza presented the YMCA Europe's input on the topic and gave examples on how different member organisations were affected by restrictive policies or undemocratic actions.
She has also made an overview regarding the effects of the pandemic on the Romanian democracy and presented some examples of NGO involvement during the sanitary crisis.
For the brainstorming session, Eliza proposed a couple of ideas regarding both the involvement of YFJ on the topic, but also of YMCA Europe.
One of the suggestions made was to develop a European platform (similar to CIVICUS Monitor), where youth organisations can share real time updates on measures that endanger the civic space and where they can find information and methods on how to react.