Hundreds of activists from the Party of European Socialists are gearing up for a major campaign event tomorrow (Friday) in support of the European Youth Plan, which envisages a better future for Europe's young people.
The 2017 PES Youth Plan Action Day will see activists taking to the streets in 72 cities and towns across Europe. Some 113 individual grassroots campaign activities are being organised by volunteer Youth Plan ambassadors as part of the Action Day, which this year focuses on education, especially Erasmus+.
PES president Sergei Stanishev said:
"Erasmus is one of the best ways for today's young people to gain invaluable cultural experiences, educational opportunities, language skills, career options, and lifelong friendships. It's recognised as one of the EU’s biggest success stories.
"But despite high demand, participation is too limited. We believe that everyone should have the chance to study abroad, whether as part of a university course, vocational training, or even at high school.
"We must eliminate administrative and financial barriers that make it difficult for people from disadvantaged backgrounds to access the programme – even though these people have so much to gain from the programme."
In addition to making Erasmus available to all, the PES Youth Plan also envisages:
- A permanent and extended European Youth Guarantee, funded with 20 billion EUR per year
- A European Youth Culture Cheque, a voucher to spend on cultural activities to facilitate accessibility of culture to young people
- A European Child Guarantee to ensure children’s rights to healthcare, education, childcare, housing and nutrition
The aim of the Youth Plan is not just to improve the chances for Europe's youth, but also to invest in the future of Europe itself by building the next generation of positive, outward-looking Europeans.
The 2016 Youth Plan Action Day was one of the PES's most successful ever campaign events, with more than 110 events taking place in 83 cities across 30 countries on a single day in November 2016. This year’s Action Day is set to be at least as big a success.