Our IVY Volunteer, Mia Matkovic, attended the International Conference and Youth Leadership Forum on the topic of “EUSDR and EUSAIR youth for cross-border partnership and cohesion” that took place in Tivat, Montenegro on 30-31 May.

The Conference and forum were hosted and organised by Central European Service for Cross-Border Initiative (CESCI), Association of European Border Regions (AEBR), Task Force of External Borders of AEBR, Institute of International Sociology of Gorizia (ISIG), Central European Service for Cross-Border Initiative Balkans (CESCI Balkans), Municipality of Tivat, Montenegro.

The Event included a conference, discussion forum and workshops with focus on the following topics among others:

  • Macro-regional and transnational approach of the EU
  • The Danube Strategy and cross-border cooperation
  • The main characteristics of cross-border cooperation in the Danube region
  • The role of youth in transnational and macro-regional cooperation
  • Citizen´s participation in cross-border cooperation as a form of cross-border governance
  • Youth involved in cross-border programmes and projects
  • Action plan for implementation of Youth Charter for Cross-Border cooperation

Among the participants, around 80 people, there were a lot of young people coming from the Danube and Adriatic-Ionian Region involved in the civil society, but also representatives from the EU Commission, the Council of Europe, Regional Youth Cooperation Office (RYCO) and EuroVienna.

During the first workshop, I got to work on the topic of the role of youth in macro-regional cooperation in the field of cultural dialogue. With my team, we came up with many ideas, but I would underline mostly two of them: empowerment of youth and tolerance. We also got to give spontaneous short definitions of different notions and it seems like my understanding of the macro-regional strategies was one of the most relevant one, I even got a chocolate bar as a reward! And of course, I had the opportunity of meeting great young people, coming from different countries of the region, who are trying to make things change.” (testimony Mia Matkovic)