changeYouAct Changemakers Workshop

On the 14th of October 2011, 23 young people from across Europe gathered together in Warsaw Poland to take part in the YouAct Changemakers workshop.

The workshop followed the EuroNGOs conference Future Perspectives on Development Cooperation – Putting SRHR on the Right Track and was supported by UNFPA and EuroNGOs. Through organizing the Changemakers workshop, YouAct aimed to bring youth participants working with youth-led and youth-serving SRHR organizaitons together with young people from other movements to share, collaborate and build partnership.

The young people participating in the workshop came from 15 different European countries and represented a diverse range of youth organisations and movements including those that focus on womens equality, climate change, development, sex workers rights, medical students, young decision makers and HIV and AIDS . Twelve of the Changemakers attendees also participated in the EuroNGOs Conference and shared the youth perspectives on the issues being discussed.

Changemakers organizers structured the workshop around increasing knowledge of SRHR and identifying gaps, progress and priorities towards 2014 /2015 and beyond, improving European youth led advocacy towards key milestones in the coming years and improving partnership working with other youth movements in the region. Prior to the workshop an online consultation was held with participants to identify areas that participants and organisations felt they would like to focus on and how they felt the Changemakers workshop could increase their knowledge and provide new opportunities for partnership working with other youth movements.

Guest speakers included Neil Datta from the European Parliamentary Forum on Population and Development, Caroline Teti from DSW Kenya, and Vanessa Brocato from Planned Parenthood Federation of America. Changemakers participants also heard presentations from the Coordinator of Astra Youth about the recent anti-choice bill proposed in the Polish parliament and the subsequent response of SRHR activists , as well as presentations from a young person living with HIV and from a young sex worker from Macedonia.

Activities included a walk through the history of SRHR linking the national and regional to the international, an analysis of the Political, Economic, Socio-Cultural and Technological context of our work, a session on mapping our networks and priorities, presentations and exercises for effectively identifying and dealing with opposition, organizational speed-dating, reflections on the International Year of Youth and a World Cafe on hot topics in SRHR.

The final day of the workshop saw participants come together to map opportunities for partnership in the coming years and agree on key objectives for bringing European youth movements closer together in the run up to 2014/15 and beyond to ensure young people’s SRHRights are central to future development frameworks.

For more information please contact YouAct Coordinator Mari-Claire Price –

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