June 22, 2024

WBF endorses the Western Balkans Youth Forum Declaration

4 November 2022

The Western Balkans Fund fully endorses the Western Balkans Youth Forum Declaration, a product of the high-level deliberations at the Forum, part of the Berlin Process 2022. 

The Declaration foresees an important and precise role for the Western Balkans Fund regarding the promotion of youth mobility in the WB Region.

Moreover, the Declaration provides practical recommendations that will further intensify Reconciliation and large-scale Cooperation in our Region.

WB Youth Forum was organised by RYCO, in partnership with OFAJ DFJW, CrossBorder Factory and supported by the Auswärtiges Amt, the Regional Cooperation Council – RCC’s Western Balkan Youth Lab project and a regional project funded by the European Union (#EU) Technical Assistance to Civil Society Organisations in the Western Balkans and Turkey (#TACSO). EU Neighbourhood & Enlargement Europäische Kommission – Vertretung in Deutschland.

In endorsing the Declaration, the Western Balkans Fund (hereinafter “we”):

  • We encourage our governments to prioritize human approaches towards sustainable peace, but also to meaningfully include young people in peace negotiations on the normalization of relations between societies in the region.

  • We recommend a regionally coordinated approach toward the implementation of the Youth, Peace, and Stability Agenda through developing roadmaps, plans, frameworks, policies, programs, projects, or services.
  • We are strongly encouraging our respective governments, as well as regional and international organizations and their agencies, and other relevant stakeholders to work with and support organized youth and their structures.
  • We invite all public institutions and international organizations to recognize and actively support local efforts for community development through capacity-building, providing space, and financial support.

  • We encourage the governments of the Western Balkans Six to commit additional funds to support youth mobility activities through existing regional mechanisms such as the Regional Youth Cooperation Office (RYCO), Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), and Western Balkans Fund (WBF). 

Berlin Declaration of the Western Balkans Youth Forum 2022