Saturday, 9 May 2009

Is the European Youth Forum in bad shape?

Nonformality, a former board member of the European Youth Forum (YFJ), has blogged a long article on his view on the current situation in the YFJ, and it is very negative.

An extract:
[T]here is, regrettably, no open discourse on the situation of the Youth Forum between the different movements and strands—with most youth organisations, in united hypocrisy, happily ignoring their own call to politics for more transparency—these voices cannot be easily heard, but the increasing frequency, intensity and attractiveness of networks and meetings working on the establishment of organisational alternatives will soon lead to visible results, which will exemplify for how long the dissatisfaction with the Youth Forum has simmered.

The few large organisations that currently dominate the platform—most notably the scouts and the socialists—share a lack of interest to make the European Youth Forum a strong voice of young people with key institutional players such as the European Commission: both sides fear the loss of power and influence.

Luckily for these players, the Youth Forum is, in its current state, caught in internal power struggles and ensnared by a lack of critical voices: seemingly endless discussions culminate in carefully negotiated position papers that lack both courage and authenticity.
This article comes at the time of the Council of Members of the European Youth Forum, that today has elected Guiseppe Porcaro as its new Secretary General.