As part of the Mlada Evropa initiative, implemented by the Institute in cooperation with the German Embassy in BiH, within the Sarajevo 2014 project and the Foundation Sarajevo Heart of Europe, with the financial support of the European Union, the participants of regional conferences discussed the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats for youth in BiH. The participants focused on the regions they come from, and the conferences were held in Mostar, Banja Luka and Tuzla. Youth Officers, representatives of nongovernmental organizations dealing with youth issues, youth councils in FBiH and RS and youth leaders discussed issues important for youth through a workshop entailing the SWOT analysis. 


The SWOT analysis SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) is an analysis of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats used when developing strategies, which includes internal and external factors which concern youth in BiH, the challenges they face and the opportunities they are offered can be accessed HERE.


 

The final regional conference Mlada Evropa was organised in Tuzla Youth Centre on 17 April 2015. The regional conference in Tuzla gathered youth associations and NGOs that handle youth issues, youth councils, municipal officials for the youth and youth leaders with the aim of promoting conclusions from the international youth conference, but also from the discussion of the position of youth in BiH.


Through three parallel workshops, the significance of active citizenship of the youth and their involvment in democratic processes was promoted, along with the benefits from international cooperation and youth networking and significance of overcoming nationalism for a sustainable peace and a better future for all. 


After the parallel workshops, the participants of the conference used the SWOT analysis workshop to analyse strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats for the youth in BiH, taking to consideration the Tuzla region. The numerousness of the youth, their education and knowledge of foreign language were emphasized as the most important strengths of the youth. For the first time in a SWOT analysis workshop, the youth reflected on the youth living in rural areas that are familiar with working in agriculture and that was listed as their strength. The lack of awareness was identified as their weakness, along with the lack of working experience through volunteering during their formal education. As for the opportunities, there are different possibilities for the youth when it comes to international networking, studying abroad, and employment in the IT sector or in agriculture. Since 12% of the land in BiH is not cultivated, the youth have an option to work in agriculture. As the greatest threats for the youth, the participants emphasized the poor economic and political situation in BiH and the fact that the youth are leaving BiH.


Regionalna konferencija Tuzla


Regionalna konferencijaTuzla 2


Regionalna konferencijaTuzla 3


 

The final press conference of Mlada Evropa initiative, where the results of the initiative were presented, was held in the EU info centre on 30 April 2015.


Mr Vladimir Pandurevi? spoke to the press as a representative of the EU Delegation, emphasizing that the EU is happy to support a project such as Sarajevo 2014 that includes Mlada Evropa initiative that aims to honour the 100th anniversary of World War I. It is crucial to continue working on the development of sustainable peace, which is indicated by the recent unfortunate events in Zvornik. Mr Pandurevi? emphasized that youth are the brightest point of the society. Mr Jens Wagner, the culture attache for the German Embassy in BiH spoke at the conference about the activities of Mlada Evropa Initiative and the most important conclusions that youth listed through the international youth conference, which are: active youth participation in democratic processes, international youth networking and overcoming nationalism. Mr Wagner emphasized the positive experience of Germany, that has good relations with France and Poland after the conflict, due to, in addition to other factors, youth exchanges between the countries.


Following the international youth conference, three regional conferences were held in Mostar, Banja Luka and Tuzla in which the most significant strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats were emphasized through the SWOT analysis workshop. The project coordinator Nejra Neimarlija Poi? presented the results from the three regional conferences. Youth officials, representatives of youth councils, youth orgainsations and youth leaders at the conferences concluded that the most important youth strengths are their number, creativity, knowledge of foreign languages and computer skills and the familiarity with working in agriculture of most youth from rural areas. Their greatest weaknesses are lack of awareness and volunteering experience during their formal education which could increase the chances for employment. Opportunities for youth are provided in the civil sector, developing the economic sector through governmental incentives and benefits and the opportunities for education abroad after which the youth with experience and knowledge return to BiH. Also, opportunities for youth are hidden in the legal solutions for the youth that present the mechanism and diverse ways of improving youth position. As the greatest threat for the youth is the bad economic and political situation in BiH and a lack of institutional care for the youth.


Presica 1


Presica 2


 


 

In Tuzla, on 17 April 2015, in Tuzla Youth Centre, the third and final regional conference Mlada Europa will be held. The aim of the conference is to discuss the position of the youth in Europe, by using the SWOT matrix, or the matrix of strength, weaknesses, opportunities and threats for the youth in BiH. During the two regional conferences held so far in Mostar and Banja Luka, the participants also discussed the position of the youth by using the SWOT matrix.


Besides the SWOT analysis, the participants were acquainted with the conclusions of the international youth conference Mlada Evropa through three simultaneous workshops covering the topics: international youth collaboration, overcoming nationalism and active participation of youth in the democratic process.


In the regional conferences held so far in Mostar and Banja Luka the governmental representatives, youth officers, youth councils, the representatives of the NGO sector and youth leaders participated. The most important conclusions related to the position of the youth in BiH, in consideration with the regions they come from, will be presented on the final Mlada Evropa press conference for the media that will be held in the end of April 2015.


The participants may apply to the one-day regional conference in Tuzla by 9 April 2015 HERE and the number of participants is limited.


RK Banjaluka


RK Mostar


 

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