Bosnian-Podrinje Canton Working on First Youth Strategy

Another institution has decided to begin developing a youth strategy to ensure that young people receive structured, systematic care. The Ministry of Education, Youth, Science, Culture, and Sports of the Bosnian-Podrinje Canton will join other institutions in Bosnia and Herzegovina that systematically address the needs of young people and work daily to improve their position. This process is an important step in applying best practices and policies from European documents and programs, especially regarding inclusion and empowerment of young people, which are among the key topics in the EU Youth Strategy 2019-2027.

The Institute for Youth Development KULT and the Ministry of Education, Youth, Science, Culture, and Sport of the Bosnian-Podrinje Canton have signed a Memorandum and Cooperation Agreement, funded by the European Union, to develop the first youth strategy for the Bosnian-Podrinje Canton. The development of the strategy will be preceded by a survey on the position and needs of young people in this canton. Minister Adisa Alikadić-Herić and Executive Director of the Institute Ajka Rovčanin signed the Memorandum and Cooperation Agreement.

Youth strategies are very important. We often talk about how important young people are, but we usually ignore their needs, wishes and demands. I consider this the first step in establishing an institutional mechanism as required by the FBiH Law on Youth, which is a legal obligation for us. This will enable a multi-sectoral approach in areas where young people can contribute. This is a good opportunity for me to invite young people and organizations that work with young people to get involved and give their suggestions on how to improve the position of young people in the Bosnian-Podrinje Canton,” said Minister Alikadić-Herić.

The youth strategy is a government document outlining a structured approach to addressing youth issues. It includes an analysis of young people’s problems and needs, strategic action plans, goals, and measures for achieving these goals. It’s important to note that this is the first youth strategy for the Bosnian-Podrinje Canton. Through this strategy, the Canton will provide new opportunities for young people and facilitate connections between institutions and non-governmental organizations within the Canton to improve the status of their young people. The youth strategy will contribute to Bosnia and Herzegovina’s progress towards European Union membership. Besides fulfilling one of the obligations from the FBiH Law on Youth, the Ministry will ensure equal participation and contribution from youth and civil society organizations in the development of this document. This process will strengthen cooperation among civil society organizations, and the strategy will recognize the need to support and empower youth organizations, which is part of the process of aligning the Western Balkans with European policies.

We are glad that the Government of the Bosnian-Podrinje Canton and the Ministry of Education, Youth, Science, Culture and Sports of the Bosnian-Podrinje Canton recognized the Institute and the EU as qualified partners in this process. The Institute will provide methodological support throughout the entire process. We intend to actively engage with youth from this canton to identify their needs, problems, and ideas, ensuring that the strategy ultimately reflects their perspectives and concerns. We are pleased that the Government and the Ministry have committed to developing the first strategy, fulfilling their obligation under the Law on Youth of the FBiH,” said Ajka Rovčanin, Executive Director of the Institute for Youth Development KULT.

Examining the needs and problems of young people and creating systemic solutions will help boost youth activism and improve the quality of life in the Canton. Recognizing the role of young people and youth organizations in shaping policies is crucial for this strategy. Their contribution will promote democratic processes, which are aligned with key measures of the EU’s strategic document for young people.

The project “Designing, Creating and Adopting Youth Policies” is funded by the European Union and implemented by the Institute for Youth Development KULT in partnership with the Regional Youth Cooperation Office (RYCO), the Youth Council of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Network of youth centers for animation, development and training of Republika Srpska (M.O.C.A.R.T.) and the Association of Secondary School Students in BiH.

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