The world is now home to more than 1.8 billion young people. Yet more often than not, these expected key stakeholders of today's global challenges are pushed to the periphery in key policy-making areas of education, peace, sustainability, and global citizenship. ERASMUS + Global Partnerships (EGP) and the cross-cutting project by the OCEANS Network supported by the Erasmus+ Student and Alumni Alliance (ESAA) aimed at building youth partnership opportunities to advance the UN Sustainable Development Goals, focussing on Education, Peace and Innovation.
Attended by 60 participants from over 20 countries across Europe and Asia, the Erasmus+ Global Partnerships Symposium was hosted in the sprawling C-ASEAN tower on 23rd and 24th of May, 2019. The project brought together ERASMUS+ alumni, members of different member organisations, such as Erasmus Mundus Association (EMA), Erasmus Student Network (ESN) and OCEANS Network, youth organisations, start-ups, and researchers to facilitate young people in building coalitions, exchanging perspectives in a cross and inter-disciplinary setting, and developing sustainable grassroots solutions for their communities.
The welcome speeches were delivered by Jenni Lundmark, Attaché and Acting Head of Cooperation from the European Union Delegation to Thailand and the OCEANS Network President, Jungyoon Han. The opening remarks were followed by several different interactive sessions and round-table discussions, e.g. on the role of Cooperative Games in accelerating social change, the use of social media to support human rights movement and the overall question on how to empower youth to pursue effective and innovative ideas for Sustainable Development Goals. The regional and disciplinary diversity of the facilitators and speakers spanned across the world from South America over Europe to Asia, from youth activists, over directors of civic and non-profit organisations, to human rights activists and university professors. The second day focused on developing new project ideas and collaboration amongst the participants which culminated in a final pitch of each project group to present their ideas.
The two-day symposium finished off in a joint-session to formulate concrete policy recommendations on how to empower youth and youth-focused organisations in accelerating SDG's (for further information, please see the attached project report).
In an effort to increase digital participation and maximise on delivered trainings, two webinars were hosted on 17th and 18th May on the topic of design thinking and finding the right financing strategy for new innovations in SDGSs.
In total, the Erasmus+ Global Partnerships have trained over 200 people, generated over 15,000 user engagement on social media and its website was visited over 4000 times.
The initiative was a great success and the project owners are already in discussion with the OCEANS Network to see how and where they could organize a second edition with differing regional focus.
To learn more about the Erasmus+ Global Partnerships event in Bangkok, have a look at the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oxL5RDrK0RM