On November 24 the Romanian Roma Youth Platform took place online gathering together young Roma activists, representatives of national and European institutions and members of the Roma civil society in Romania.
The main discussion was about the involvement of Roma youth in the development of national Roma strategies and about the contribution of Roma youth to public policies and change at the society level.
The event started with the welcoming words of Marietta Herfort, Executive Director of the Phiren Amenca International Network and Coordinator of the Roma Youth Voices project.
After that, Dr. Simona Torotcoi had a visual presentation of some of the results from the research report Roma Youth: Challenges Perspectives which was very much appreciated by the participants as up to date there are not so many valuable reports on Roma youth.
The discussion was built around the questions of How could young Roma contribute to policy and societal change and what does this require?
Mrs Lavinia Banu – Policy Officer at the Roma Coordination Team of DG Justice from the European Commission answered this by presenting some programs of the European Commission where Roma youth could be involved.
Mr Daniel Rădulescu, President of the National Agency for Roma, talked about the lack of involvement of the Roma youth. Yet, he expressed openness to receive feedback and recommendations for the Romanian National Roma Strategy which was opened for recommendations from the civil society.
Mr Nicușor Ciobanu – Expert from the Romanian Erasmus Plus National Agency answered to the question of How can we better involve Roma youth? He stressed on young Roma women participation and by saying that the Erasmus National Agency will find more financial resources for Roma youth.
Mr Gabriel Carnariu, President of the Romanian Youth Council, was asked by the participants at the event if the Romanian National Youth Council has Roma youth members and about the number of young Roma who took part in the consultation for the youth resolution. His answer was that he does not know exactly the number of young Roma who took part in the consultation process but that he is sure that within the NGOs which are members of the National Youth Council there are young Roma too.
As a follow up of the event, the E-Romnja association sent written recommendations to the National Agency for Roma in which they demand a special attention to the sector of Roma youth stressing on gender dimension in all domains of the strategy. Moreover, specific measures for the Roma youth were required in order for them to be included within the Romanian National Strategy for Roma.
The event was moderated by Georgiana Lincan – Gender Equality Expert within E-Romnja – Association for Promoting Roma Women Rights and it was live-streamed at the Roma Youth Voices facebook-page and it was hold in the Romanian language.
The discussion can be found on Facebook here and on youtube: