Youth active for Cohesion Policy

Hello everyone!! I am Christos and I come from Thessaloniki, Greece.

A month has passed since I started volunteering for the Joint Secretariat of the Interreg V-A Greece Cyprus Programme at the headquarters of the Managing Authority in Thessaloniki and I am fully excited about the whole process of volunteering experience.

The huge quantity of knowledge I have gained through these days have familiarize me with various aspects of cooperation in EU. The same time, I understand every day, more and more, what Cohesion Policy is and how important is for the harmonious coexistence between regions of EU.

During the first days, under the guidance of my mentor I wrote some articles, describing the ambitions and achievements of the projects, as part of the preparation of a book of approved projects of the Program for the programming period 2014-2021. Then, I started contact with the beneficiaries of the projects I took on, in order to collect some specific information. In that way, I learned about the projects of INTERREG Greece-Cyprus and I realized how important it is their contribution to improve the citizens’ quality of life in local communities.

Some projects aim to create the appropriate circumstances for a better and stronger social fabric by reducing disparities. For example, ΕΡΜΙΣ ΙΙ, which is one of my favorite projects, has achieved to give equal chances in access to public spaces for people with special needs. Meanwhile, I really appreciate and admire the respect for environment and sustainable development, which projects show.

In total, it is an amazing volunteering experience and I think it is a great opportunity for young people to understand how the Cohesion Policy works and gain as more as possible knowledge they can as they are at the heart of the European Union and the future of it.

Hence, unfortunately, very few people know about European Territorial Cooperation Programs and what they offer to the local community taking place and above it. If you are informed, you can get involved, and if you get involved, you can provide and benefit from it. We need the youngsters, their ideas, new views, energy and capabilities. Youngsters can promote and enhance the visibility of our programs and projects better than anyone. It is the generation born and living in the technological era, and they deeply know how social media works. So its contribution to the promotion of our program and projects through modern ways social media is valuable.

I believe that IVY is a great idea and opportunity not only for the European young people, as though this they can learn and earn valuable new skills and knowledge but also for the European Territorial Cooperation programs as they will become well promoted by young people contribution.

– Christos, IVY Reporter at the Interreg Greece-Cyprus Programme

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