The Roma Youth Forum 2023, titled “So Keres, Europa?!” took place in Balatonkenese, Hungary, from August 22 to 28. The international gathering saw the participation of 120 young individuals hailing from 12 European nations. Mrs. Marietta Herfort, the Executive Director of the Phiren Amenca Network, inaugurated the forum. Distinguished figures such as Klara Dobrev, Member of the European Parliament, and Mikulas Lakatos, Young European of the Year 2023, delivered addresses emphasizing the crucial role of the new generation in public life.
Following the official opening, representatives from the participating countries engaged in a lecture and discussion concerning the rule of law, democracy, and the state of human and minority rights, both within their respective nations and Hungary.
“So Keres, Europa?!” featured human rights workshops facilitated by renowned civil society organizations like the European Roma Rights Centre, Haver Alapítvány, and the Budapest Pride. Alongside these workshops, participants delved into artistic sessions, laying the groundwork for the culminating festival.
After a week of intensive preparation and interactive sessions led by youth workers and artists, the participants presented their creations at the closing festival. The showcase included mesmerizing dance and singing performances, captivating visual art and memes exhibitions, as well as thought-provoking theatrical acts and remembrance performances dedicated to the Roma Genocide.
Beyond uniting 120 young minds, “So Keres, Europa?!” served as a platform for the exchange of new and innovative ideas and methods aimed at challenging stereotypes and combating racism. Testimonials from the participants, available for review on our social media pages, underscore how the event broadened their understanding of diverse Roma communities, shed light on the challenges faced by young Roma across Europe, facilitated the establishment of transnational friendships, and equipped them with valuable skills to confront the stereotypes encountered in their daily lives.
The activity is co-funded by European Youth Foundation of the Council of Europe and the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Commission.