Last Friday the Council of Europe's current Secretary-General Mr Thorbjorn Jagland officially proposed his contingency plans for dealing with the Council of Europe's budget cuts, which have included a plan to effectively dissolve the Council’s Youth Sector in its entirety.
This body’s Youth Sector delivers immeasurable amounts of wealth to the European Youth Sector, in the form of opportunities, empowerment, co-management and more. These organs represent immense democratic and participatory accomplishments that have been achieved by the Council of Europe and European Youth Sector alike, which is why the Maltese National Youth Council (KNŻ)
cannot do anything but oppose such plans.
The Council of Europe brings together 47 Member States with the aim of upholding and developing human rights across the continent and has been effectively doing this for the past 70 years. This body has given youths better access to their rights, whilst immeasurably increasing the participatory levels of youths across the continent which has led to several successes in the youth sector as a whole. However, due to the recent refusal of payments by certain Member States in the Council of Europe, youths shall be getting the shorter end of the stick, with this proposal having the potential to dissolve years of hard work carried out by thousands of European youth, in the blink of an eye.
The economic crisis which the Council of Europe is facing is potentially becoming detrimental to the upcoming generation of youths and this is why we have sent a letter to ask our Government to defend the democratic rights of Maltese and European youths by opposing these regressive plans.
Over the past few years, Malta has been at the forefront of youth empowerment and participatory mechanisms and is one of the few countries in Europe to have adopted Vote 16 and opened the doors for political participation for youth below that age. On the 23rd of May, the Member States of the European Council shall be voting on these contingency plans, and as Maltese youth, we wish nothing more than to see our country continue leading by example in defending the rights of youth participation at a European stage and voting against the contingency plans relating to youth, with the aim of ensuring the Council of Europe’s Youth Sector remains intact.
KNŻ stands alongside the European Youth Forum and the rest of Europe’s National Youth Councils in standing against these harmful changes and hopes that our request will be pushed forward and we can count on Malta’s Government’s support in ensuring our rights are preserved.
- By:Monique Agius
The National Youth Council is proud to be hosting the second edition of the National Youth Technology and Innovation Fair! 💡
This year we will be featuring a bigger number of stands including robot exhibitions, graphic designs, youth-tech organisations, startups and much more!
Watch out for our two main highlights: Crypto Space which will consist of several talks by cryptocurrency experts and Gaming Space with ongoing gaming tournaments and several prices to be won!
Join us on Sunday 26th of August from 5:30 pm onwards at Tritoni Area, Floriana (opposite of Phoenicia Hotel).
Stay tuned for more information on the different stands and initiatives we have in store for you!
This event is supported by MITA.
- By:Monique Agius
On the 22nd December, 2018, 49 migrants were saved off the shores of Malta, and were left in limbo for over 19 days, with limited resources and an uncertain future. Although the situation was solved after almost three weeks of uncertainty, it is clear that such issues can no longer be solved on an ad-hoc basis, and European leaders must step up in facing the crisis at hand, instead leaving the problems to be solved by Member states which are at the border of the European Union.
Migration is a European crisis, one that needs to be treated as a major priority by the Union and its member states. Lives matter, irrespective of one’s nationality, race, sexuality, gender or country of origin, and whilst we don’t get to choose where we are born, we do get to decide to save those born into persecution.
The Union was founded on the principles of safeguarding human rights and basic democratic freedoms, and therefore it is eminent for all European governments work together to find a long-term solution to this humanitarian crisis, instead of reactively settling for an ad-hoc solution with every migrant arrival.
As youth, we refuse to be remembered as a generation which sat by and watched as human lives were used as political pawns, and demand concrete solutions for all European leaders to avoid risking further lives at sea. Thousands of souls have already been lost on European borders due to our inaction and apathy, and it is high time we recognized that Member states at the Southern and Eastern neighborhood of the European Union, are European borders, making migration a common concern amongst all European States.
In light of this, KNZ Malta shall be getting in contact with all of the EU’s National Youth Councils, with the aim of pressuring European leaders to place migration on the top of the agenda, with the hope of finding a European solution to this crisis
- By:Monique Agius
KNZ is proud to launch 'A Holistic Approach Towards Mental Health and Youth' with the support of EUPA and Erasmus +
Mental health and behavioral problems are reported to be the primary drivers of disability worldwide. However, unfortunately they are not given as much importance as they should by both authorities and also citizens alike in our communities. There is a
taboo which prevents sufferers from seeking the help they need, afraid that they will lose their rights, resulting in these people getting caught in the system. Hence due to the pressure put by society and the marginalisation faced, one is not expected to get better.
Therefore, this project will be taking a holistic approach towards Mental Health and youths to create a policy paper which takes into account the various aspects of society, in order to make it more accessible to youths who suffer from mental health problems. Unfortunately, it is a fact that currently those who suffer through these problems, are either silent or else they risk exclusion from exercising some of their basic rights like the right to work. Our policy makers are responsible to ensure that the human rights of youths are safeguarded even against employers and businesses, therefore it would be ideal to have a wider framework that would cater for these aspects.
This project will be built on the fundamental idea of inclusion and integration of youths between the ages of 13 years to 30 years old suffering from mental health diseases in our society. KNZ has always been at the forefront in representing youths and assuring that their rights are always safeguarded, this will be no exception as we strive towards a more inclusive society where all youths are given the same opportunities.
The EU has put Mental Health and well-being as one of its priorities for the EU Youth Strategy, in order to give a voice to all those youths who are sometimes forgotten to ensure they are truly represented nonetheless even in policy.
There will be 5 events spread throughout the 7 months of this project, whereby every month would be tackling a different topic. Each topic will be reflecting a sector in our society which is of direct relevance to youths, like the education sector, employment and even the health sector. This will make the policy paper a more holistic one that will ensure that the human rights of people who are mentally sick are still protected. The project will focus on mental health services, mental health in the educational field and mental health in the workplace.
The event is free of charge and will be followed by a complimentary lunch. To register for the event please fill in the registration form.
- By:Monique Agius
PRESS RELEASE 11.08.2018
Kunsill Nazzjonali taż-Żgħażagħ (KNŻ) this morning held a press conference outside the Maltese Parliament in Valletta and announced its intention to lobby the Maltese Government to ascertain that various methods are studied to give the necessary tools to citizens, especially youths, to critically evaluate Malta’s current affairs by means of democratic principles.
The press conference was called on the eve of International Youth Day and this year’s theme for this occasion is ‘safe spaces’. KNZ President Michael Piccinino emphasized that this theme should be tackled through education. Accordingly, he held that this is an opportunity for the competent authorities to endeavour to engage all stakeholders to discuss and propose new formal and non-formal components in the National Curriculum to address this current gap in our educational system through a consultative committee. Such consultative committee would later transform itself into a monitoring committee to continuously evaluate the implementation of this initiative. He reminded the media that this process should also keep in mind the education of the general public, especially parents to make sure that youths are less influenced by partisan elements. He remarked that KNZ is ready to take this matter forward through all democratic means possible due to the importance of the subject at hand.
Piccinino remarked that the past year was overall positive for youth in Malta through the adoption of Vote16, the lowering of the age of consent to the age of 16 and other legislative changes in the pipeline, namely a change in the Voluntary Organisations Act to allow 16 year olds to actively fully participate in Maltese democracy. He also mentioned that KNZ’s current work in this area includes a mid-term evaluation of the National Youth Policy (2015-2020) and the dissemination and effective implementation of the EU 2018 Youth Goals.
STQARRIJA STAMPA 11.08.2018
Il-KNŻ isejjaħ għal Edukazzjoni Ċivika
Il-Kunsill Nazzjonali taż-Żgħażagħ dalgħodu sejjaħ konferenza stampa barra l-Parlament Malti fil-Belt Valletta u ħabbar l-intenzjoni tiegħu li jipproponi lill-Gvern Malta sabiex jaċċerta li metodi differenti jiġu studjati sabiex ċittadini, speċjalment żgħażagħ, ikollhom l-għodda sabiex jevalwaw b’mod kritiku ġrajjiet kurrenti permezz ta’ prinċipji demokratiċi.
Il-konferenza stampa ġiet imsejħa f’lejliet il-Jum Internazzjonali taż-Żgħażagħ u matul din is-sena, it-tema ta’ din l-okkażżjoni hija propju il-kunċett ta’ ‘spazji sikuri’. Il-President tal-KNŻ Michael Piccinino enfasizza li din it-tema għandha tkun trattata permezz tal-edukazzjoni. Hu sostna li din hija opportunita’ biex l-awtoritajiet kompetenti jsejħu lill-istakeholders kollha sabiex jiġu diskussi u proposti komponenti ta’ edukazzjoni formali u mhux formali fil-Kurrikulum Nazzjonali. Dan il-pass għandu jindirizza dan in-nuqqas preżenti fis-sistema edukattiva permezz ta’ kumitat konsultattiv. Dan il-kumitat għandu wara jiġi trasformat f’kumitat ta’ moniteraġġ li kontinwament jevalwa l-implimentazzjoni ta’ din l-inizzjattiva. Huwa fakkar li dan il-proċess għandu jieħu f’kunsiderazzjoni l-edukazzjoni tal-pubbliku ingenerali, speċjalment ġenituri sabiex jassigura li ż-żgħażagħ ikunu dejjem inqas influenzati minn elementi partiġġjani. Huwa rrimarka li l-KNŻ huwa lest sabiex jieħu dan is-suġġett ‘il quddiem premezz ta’ metodi demokratiċi possibli minħabba l-importanza ta’ dawn il-fatturi.
Piccinino żied billi qal li l-aħħar sena kienet waħda pjuttost pożittiva għaż-żgħażagħ Maltin bl-introduzzjoni tal-Vot 16, it-tnaqqas tal-eta’ tal-kunsens għall-eta’ ta’ 16 u bidliet leġislattivi li mistennija jseħħu dalwaqt, fosthom bidla fil-liġi tal-għaqdiet volontarji sabiex żgħażagħ ta’ 16-il sena jitħallew jipparteċipaw b’mod sħiħ fid-demokrazija Maltija. Huwa qal ukoll li x-xogħol ta’ KNŻ bħalissa jinkludi evalwazzjoni mid-term ta’ Politika Nazzjonali taż-Żgħażagħ (2015-2019) u d-distribuzzjoni u l-implementazzjoni effettiva tal-Youth Goals tal-UE 2018.
- By:Monique Agius
| CALLING ALL MALTESE AND GOZITAN YOUTH |
International Youth Day is just around the corner, and after last year's successful event, KNZ couldn't resist reviving Frontline for a second edition of late night celebrations.
Welcome to Frontline 2.0!
As anyone who attended last year's edition would tell you, Velvet, Bugibba is a great, but small venue, meaning our €15 tickets for the party are exclusively LIMITED! Any attendees can expect to indulge in all last year's 'drinking initiatives', from beer-bongs and initiation shots to a few new surprises we've prepared for all the brave attendees.
The Open Bar shall kick off at 9pm and will continue up to midnight. But don't worry if you get thirsty quickly; drinks will be sold for €1 and Beer at 50c just as soon as the Open Bar ends. Contact any KNZ Member to buy tickets for the party.
See you at the Bar's Frontline.
Date: Saturday 11th August