“We are Europe” – final event in Cologne

Belgian cooking, a rap song and a movie about the educational trip to Brussels – at the closing events of “We are Europe” on 16th and 17th March 2019 in Cologne, young people from the children’s and youth centres Salamander and Weiden gave free rein to their creativity. The event was opened on Saturday by Dr. Ralf Heinen, Mayor of the City of Cologne.

The model project “We are Europe” was developed in cooperation with the IKAB-Bildungswerk e.V. and with child and youth welfare organisations with the involvement of the participating municipalities and was also carried out in the cities of Darmstadt and Dresden. In the run-up to the European elections, it is aimed at offering young people, who have little access to political education and who are rather sceptical about Europe, low-threshold, target-group-specific access and participation opportunities.

In the project, the participating young people between the ages of 16 and 20 were able to decide for themselves how they wanted to approach the topic of Europe – how they could integrate it into their realities. The young people of the Salamander Youth Centre decided to travel together to Brussels and prepared the trip together. The opportunities and limits of the European area were discussed in workshops with the participants, including refugees and migrants. Also everyday life in the EU was made tangible through simulation games. The young people summarised their impressions and experiences of their trip to Brussels in a video, which was presented at the closing event.

The young people of the Children and Youth Centre Weiden organised a European weekend under the motto “Borderless Europe?” In order to better understand the influence of the EU in everyday life, the rights and borders, offered by the European area, were discussed. The youths creatively summarised their personal ideas of “their” Europe in the form of a rap song and a video.