Youth Guarantee and Civil Society Organisations in Western Balkans – Consultation Session

How can Youth and Civil Society Organisations support better employment, continued education, apprenticeship, and traineeship for young people under the age of 30 in the Western Balkans region?

The European Union YG initiative foresees measures to improve employment prospects for young people through timely provision of counselling, education and (re)training as well as employment opportunities. To address long standing challenges of youth joblessness and social exclusion risks, all Western Balkans governments have committed to adopt, test and mainstream YG schemes.

In the European Union and Western Balkans, non-governmental sector plays a crucial role in supporting inclusive education, transition from school to work, and fighting against labour market and social exclusion and poverty risks. The ETF study in 2020-21 documented the effective contribution of civil society in this field, through the range of services related to learning and support to employment. CSOs facilitate learning and transition to employment for people of all age, and often focus on those less likely to be in education and training due to different forms of vulnerability.

Building on the evidence that Youth and Civil Society Organisations are important mediators in developing skills of young adults, the ETF is supporting the interface between these organisations and public authorities, with the aim to strengthen the provision of skills development, coaching and counselling, including in the context of the YG.

As the Western Balkans region prepares for launching of Youth Guarantee Implementation Plans, the purpose of this consultation session is to:

  • identify opportunities for youth and civil society organisations active in the field of lifelong learning to get engaged and deliver together with public authorities effective activation and skills upgrading measures for young people;
  • hold an open discussion about the current and future involvement of youth organisations and CSOs in YG design, delivery and monitoring;
  • reflect on mechanisms and stages of YG implementation where participatory approaches to YG deployment would add great value;
  • discuss areas for further capacity building and how ETF and other actors could address these priorities.

More information

Presentation by Margareta Nikolovska, ETF
Presentation by Claudia Pinto, European Youth Forum
Presentation by Dikensa Gjokutaj, National Youth Congress of Albania