Director’s Editorial – January 2023 Issue

Dear Friends,

We said goodbye to 2022 with the closing of the European Year of Youth, your’ year, and we welcome 2023 with a new one, dedicated to skills, which may not be your primary area of interest and intervention, but…. You are used to face new challenges!

January is, usually, the moment one dedicates to the ‘good intentions’ for the year. This time, considering that this – barring new changes – will be the last year of activity for you, I would like to ask you for a last effort, to further strengthen our cooperation, perhaps together with the brothers and sisters from the Fund for Regional Cooperation.

Let’s ask each other what you can still do for your Projects, and what we can still do for you.

I tried to reply already, and together with the rest of the Team of the FO, we tried to put together some ideas. Our goal, and hope, is to start this 2023 with something extra, capable of leaving traces in the future as well. And you, what imprints do you want to leave?

I believe that this question is perfectly in line with the new main theme – skills – and I was happy to read your contribution and feel your interest. This demonstrates that being focused on Youth, does not mean to have nothing to do with skills.

On the contrary, your field is in dire need of skills development! You have been doing that for all these years, and we would only like to spread your results. Your Projects are the demonstration that – behind the statistic, saying that actually a high number of EU companies/industries/etc. are not finding skilled workers – there has been a hard work toward the creation of young people/NEETs well skilled. And you are part of this result. This is why I am not worried at all about this new European Year, when I think of you and this Fund.

At the same time, as our Friend Tom suggests, quoting Alfred Tennyson … ‘Ring out the Old, Ring in the New’! the ‘new’ is what I wish to see in the coming, last months. And I am sure that everybody will contribute, since we are sharing the same path for a while now.

Why something new? Not because we expect from you something more, if your Project is part of this Family, there is already a reason. But, on the contrary, because I know that you won’t wait for the end with folded hands.

Talking about good news, I am very happy to announce you that our Friends from Tirana and Lublin dedicated to us a precious time: we proposed them to have in our Mag the ‘passing of the baton’, and they are here! As you know Lublin is 2023 European Youth Capital, we asked both the cities to have a two-side interview, and we are glad to present you the result, which is for us an important one. Therefore, in the following pages you will read the words of Dafina Peci, the Executive Director at the National Youth Congress of Albania – Tirana during the European Youth Capital 2022, followed by Lublin’s Team, with which we hope to start the same collaboration we had last year with their ‘colleagues’ from Albania!

We thank all of them again for having chosen our Mag as one of the means to spread their initiatives.

Meanwhile, I was reading some of the Projects’ materials and every time I am pleasantly impressed by the high number of beneficiaries, i.e. young people who have been able to derive a real benefit from your activities. I believe that integrating what you already do, with the opportunity to take into consideration the need for new skills, will be an advantage for the growth of the successes of the whole Fund. To say it with one of our Projects’ words, the RAISE Youth, «This new European Year of Skills and Competences marks a new opportunity for all the projects and organizations participating to put the focus of their activities in the capacity building and training of young people all across the European territories, an opportunity we are willing to take».

Do you agree with them? Knowing you, I think the unanimous answer will be yes!

Therefore, a happy start to you all, talking on behalf of all of us, we will be here again to support you.

Gian Luca Bombarda
The Fund Director


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