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On November 9-13, in the framework of the project #GEOYOUTH2021, a study trip in Berlin took place for the youth initiative groups supported by the Georgian Institute of Politics in cooperation with the German organization Polis180.
The visit aimed at meeting with representatives of the local governmental and non-governmental organizations in Germany for an exchange on the main theme of #GEOYOUTH2021: empowering young people to be more involved in local politics.
The sub-grantees had an opportunity to share their experiences and discuss challenges that they face at the local level. They presented the results of their projects on youth civic engagement, combating stereotypes, strengthening local institutions, and involving young people in decision-making at the municipal level.
The study trip program included visits to the youth representations and institutions to learn more about youth politics and participation in Germany. Georgian youth activists spoke at the Tea Time – an informal discussion of Polis180, bringing together young people for policy debate and experience exchange. GEOYOUTH2021 participants discussed the obstacles to youth participation and the ways to overcome them, sharing their solutions and learning about German practices, networks, and tools that might be applicable to the Georgian context. Among other highlights of the trip was a visit to the Embassy of Georgia to Germany, where the participants had an opportunity to present their project results. The study trip provided participants with the opportunity to meet with the following organizations:
- German Federal Foreign Office
- EU Commission Representation in Germany
- National Network for Civil Society
- German Federal Youth Council
- Embassy of Georgia to the German Federal Republic
Project GEOYOUTH2021 is implemented by the Georgian Institute of Politics (GIP) in cooperation with the German grassroots think tank Polis180 with the financial support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Republic of Germany. The project is a continuation of GEOYOUTH2020, in which a Youth Manifesto was developed by more than 150 young people, including representatives of ethnic minorities and mountainous regions. The document outlines the challenges of youth political involvement and offers ways to address them. GEOYOUTH2021 builds on the experience and encourages young people to take ownership of the change through their own local initiatives.