A small group of Youth and Community Officers from Kent County Council and Voluntary Youth Organisations in Kent visit the Service National de la Jeunesse in Luxembourg to seek their co-operation to organise four x one week camps in Luxembourg in International Youth Year 1985. The Service National de la Jeunesse agreed and for the next two years worked hard in co-operation with Kent Youth and Community to realise the camps.
In 1984 the Annual Staff conference for all the staff of Kent Youth & Community was held in Luxembourg to familiarise them with the venues for the camps.
International Youth Year and the four x one week camps were held in Luxembourg. The aim of the camps was to get xenophobic young people from an island onto mainland Europe to meet, live with, share and learn about the culture etc. of young people from other countries in Europe and hopefully to make lasting friendships. The camps were based on the themes of Peace, Participation and Development.
Mr Frantz Muller, Head of the Service National de la Jeunesse in Luxembourg invited representatives from Liechtenstein, Belgium, Trier, Metz, Germany - EVEA (Eifel-Ardennes), Vorarlberg and Kent to a meeting in Luxembourg on the 24 November 1986 to create a platform for interregional youth exchange, based on the text “A New European Dimension” in the recommendations of the first conference of European Youth Ministers. The main task of the Platform of Interregional Youth Exchange was to be discussions on the structure of the co-operation and on the aims and content of the activities. Each Region was expected to make offers. In this year there were offers of four activities from Luxembourg, three activities from Metz, two activities from Kent and Vorarlberg and one activity from Liechtenstein. The National Youth Service in Luxembourg assumed the co-ordination of the Platform and its activities and The Platform Network was founded.
Representatives from Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Vorarlberg, Metz, Kent and St. Gallen - Switzerland met in Liechtenstein where the year’s programme of activities was reviewed and evaluated. It was emphasised that the programmes should be educational and not just Youth Travel. Consideration was also given at this meeting to joint organisation of activities, activities held with accompanying staff assisting in the delivery of the programme as well as one country only organisation and delivery activities. Discussion was also held on suggestions for 1989’s activities. Exchange of Youth Workers was considered and it was agreed that the programmes offered should be very wide, with cultural as well as specific activities.
The meeting scheduled for Vorarlberg was cancelled and no meetingwas held, although activities did take place.
A meeting of the CDEJ was held in March of this year and representatives of Liechtenstein, San Marino and Luxembourg agreed that:
a) One main activity per year would be offered. Any other activities on offer would be less emphasized.
b) The organising region will invite those responsible to a meeting in the preceding year to present the programme and evaluate the activities of the current year.
c) It is desirable that the main activity should be organised in turns by the different regions.
This agreement was approved by colleagues from St. Gallen and Vorarlberg. It was confirmed by Luxembourg that Kent was meant to remain a full partner of the inter-regional youth exchange group.
The Third Platform Network Meeting was held in September in San Marino with representatives from San Marino, Luxembourg, Liechtenstein, Vorarlberg and Kent. The principle activities and countries for the next four years were agreed – San Marino; Vorarlberg, Liechtenstein and St Gallen; Kent and Luxembourg and that those countries should host The Platform meeting in the year before they put on the activity. The year’s activities were reviewed and activities for the next year proposed. The composition of the group was discussed and it was agreed that representatives from San Marino, Liechtenstein, Vorarlberg, St. Gallen, Kent and Luxembourg should be invited to the meetings. Expanding the membership of the group was discussed but it was agreed to leave it as it was until 1993 and review it then.
The meeting was held in March in Vorarlberg and was of great significance in the history of The Platform. To celebrate their 10 years of youth exchange, Vorarlberg expanded the invitation list to include countries and regions with whom they already had exchange links. Thirty nine representatives were present from: Luxembourg, Venice, Czechoslovakia, Kent, Poland, Hungary, Finland, Alsace, Belgium, Israel, Liechtenstein, St. Gallen, San Marino, Austria – Vorarlberg, Corinthia, Vienna, Salzburg, Upper Austria, Bodenland. The aims of the Seminar were:
a) to give Vorarlberg the opportunity to discuss and prepare their exchange programmes and international activities for 1990 –91.
b) to stimulate additional youth exchange programmes by delegates at the Seminar meeting each other.
c) to assess current youth exchange programmes and international activities and to outline the future programme of international activities, which would be open to Seminar delegates’ countries and regions.
d) familiarisation of delegates with the Vorarlberg area.
Delegates explained how their youth exchanges were organised, financed, any legal aspects and their programmes for the current year. It was agreed to continue the meetings each year in a different country and the next three years were agreed and suggestions made for discussion topics for future meetings.
The fifth Platform meeting was held in January in Kent with 22 delegates representing: Klagenfort and Vorarlberg – Austria, Bratislava and Prague – Czechoslovakia, Vaasa – Finland, Mittelwihr and Lille – France, Hanau – Germany, Hajdu-Bihar – Hungary, Padova - Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Wroclaw – Poland, San Marino, Barcelona – Spain.
Delegates introduced their own organisations and their involvement in international youth exchanges. This was followed by examining different types of youth exchanges and sources of funding and safety regulations in outdoor activities programmes. Programmes were offered for 1991 – 92.
The Platform consolidated by agreeing that its main aims are:
a) to further and promote youth exchange
b) to improve youth exchanges
c) to improve the mobility of young people
Future objectives and ideas for next year’s Seminar were discussed and agreed.
Luxembourg again hosted the sixth Platform meeting in February with representatives from: Luxembourg; Kent; Vorarlberg and Salzburg – Austria; Turin – Italy; Poland; Bratislava and Prague – Czechoslovakia; Hadju–Bihar – Hungary; San Marino; Eifel-Ardennes & Bonn – Germany; Vaasa – Finland; Liechtenstein. The Seminar started by delegates expressing what they hoped to get out of the meeting. Luxembourg then outline the training they gave to young people to become International “Animateurs”, training on a European level and information on the Youth Information Centre in Luxembourg. The results of the Luxembourg Presidency of the EEC were shared and their implications for youth workers and young people, and especially the various programmes now available for obtaining funding for various youth activities. Programmes for the coming year were presented.
Again held in February, the seventh Platform meeting was hosted by Vaasa – Finland and opened up to Scandinavia countries, with Sweden and Estonia joining with 35 representatives from: Vorarlberg – Austria; Kent – England; Strasbourg and Alsace – France; Hadju–Bihar, & Budapest – Hungary; Luxembourg; Poland; Valencia and Barcelona – Spain; Vaasa, Helsinki, Uusimaa, Kannonkoski, Piispala, North Korelia, Kuopia – Finland. The usual presentations were made by delegates including evaluations of the previous year’s programmes. Discussion was held on the principles of youth exchange. It had been requested that each country bring two delegates, with one of them being a practitioner in youth activities, and these representatives held a workshop on how to develop youth camps whilst the other delegates considered the participation of young people. The Youth Instructors’ group produced two papers for discussion and agreement:
a) The Way Forward for Good Practice in International Camps
b) Preparation of a Youth Camp
Hosted by Hadju-Bihar, Hungary in Debrecen in February, the eighth Platform meeting attracted delegates from Vorarlberg – Austria, Eifel-Ardennes – Germany, Parnu and Tallin – Estonia, Vaasa – Finland, Strasbourg – France, Luxembourg, Bratislava – Slovakia; Valencia and Basque – Spain, Umea – Sweden, Kent – England and Hadju-Bihar – Hungary. Following the opening of the Conference by the State Secretary of Politics from the Prime Minister’s Office, Frantz Muller, Director of the Service National de la Jeunesse in Luxembourg spoke about the relationship between International Youth work and the Platform in the context of Youth Initiatives in the EC. Proposals for activities for 1994 were made as well as the Central Camp to be held in Hungary and individual bi-lateral exchanges. An important step at this meeting was the presentation of a Declaration for The Platform, which was known as the Debrecen Declaration and which was agreed and signed by all present. This formalised the terms of reference for the European Platform for Inter-Regional Youth Exchange. It was also agreed that future Platform meetings should be held in November rather than February to allow preparation time for organising and recruiting to activities and so there would be two meetings in 1995.
The 9th Platform meeting was held in Strasbourg in January with 23 representatives from: Alsace – France; Vararlberg – Austria; Kent – England; Vaasa – Finland; Tallin & Parnu – Estonia; Eifel – Ardennes – Germany; Luxembourg; Umea – Sweden; Hadju–Bihar – Hungary; Reykjavik – Iceland; Sarajevo – Bosnia. A more effective evaluation method was considered as well as Citizenship’ Youth Participation & Youth Information. A need for a rolling exchange programme was also expressed. A major step forward for The Platform was the suggestion from Luxembourg that The Platform should establish itself as a Formal Association. The question was raised as to whether The Platform was at a crossroads and whether it needs to consider a change of status. However the attempt to change the nature of The Platform to a more formal forum was temporarily forestalled. An attempt to offer support to the delegates from Sarajevo following their presentation was not forthcoming, as a resolution like this could not be signed by governmental agencies without approval. The Strasbourg Platform Declaration was considered and agreed.
A second Platform meeting was held in 1995, at Umea, Sweden to 1995 allow more time for organising and recruiting participants for the various activities. Participants at this 10th meeting were from: Kent – England; Berlin, Wurzburg & Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Basque County – Spain; Vaasa – Finland; Hadju-Bihar – Hungary; Eifel-Ardennes & Alsace – France; Luxembourg; Umea – Sweden. Workshops were held to consider The Declaration, Principles of the Camps, and the Camp Programme. It was agreed that priority should be on quality not quantity. It was also proposed that a brochure or pack should be prepared, including a History of The Platform and sent to all Youth for Europe Offices by the respective Platform members to raise the profile of The Platform. A logo was adopted. A separate meeting of the core group of countries was held to discuss the way forward for The Platform. The meeting was summarised to the full group and a 5-member Board of Sweden, Austria, Luxembourg, France and Finland was elected.
The 11th Platform meeting was held in Kyllburg / Eifel with delegates from Eifel-Ardennes, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern & Unterhaben –
Germany; Tallin – Estonia; Luxembourg; Vorarlberg – Austria; Umea – Sweden; Hadju-Bihar – Hungary; Vaasa, Finland; Mal Ljublyana – Slovenia. It was reported that almost 1000 young people had participated in Platform activities during 1996. It was agreed to maintain the offers as before, rather than reduce them to five or six as suggested by the delegates from Luxembourg. The representative from Hungary supported the inclusion of Romania in the activities of The Platform and emphasised the interest of East Europe States in participating in The Platform’s activities. It was agreed to introduce The Platform and its activities to the public by producing a leaflet.
This year also saw the production of The Steam Machine, which was a musical written, directed, choreographed and performed by the Youth Services of Vaasa, Kent and Luxembourg. The cast, which was made up of young people of all three countries, came together to produce and rehearse the musical during the school holidays, in Vaasa and Kent and lastly in Luxembourg, for the final production in front of an audience from all three countries involved and included the Crown Prince of Luxembourg. The idea for this project came out of the networking at previous Platform meetings.
Thirty five delegates from Tallin & Parnu – Estonia; Vorarlberg –
Austria; Brussels – Belgium; Minsk – Belarus; Kent – England; Vaasa – Finland; Mecklenburg-Vorpommern & Eifel-Ardennes – Germany; Hadju-Bihar Hungary; Luxembourg; St. Petersburg – Russia; Valencia & Basque – Spain; Umea – Sweden attended the 12th Platform meeting held in Estonia. The ‘Principles for organising Camps’ paper was discussed and the title changed to ‘Guidelines for Organising Platform Camps’. It was agreed that copies of this should be given to all those involved in organising a camp and encouraged them to work within the guidelines set out. A small working group examined evaluation and their ideas were outlined. It was agreed that the new evaluation forms that they had worked on would be circulated in the New Year.
The 13th Platform meeting was held in Flanders, Belgium with
representatives from Hadju-Bihar – Hungary; Parnu – Estonia; Vaasa – Finland; Umea – Sweden; Kent – England; Luxembourg; Tallinn – Estonia; Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Bihar – Romania; Vorarlberg – Austria; Ukraïn; Lublin – Poland;West-Finland – Suomi; Reykjavic – Iceland; Lubljana- Slovenia; Basque and Valencia- Spain and Umeå- Sweden
In 4 different workshops the following themes were discussed: : Application and quality standards of projects/camps, information strategies,the principles for Platform Camps and evaluation: a report of the outcome of these workshops was distributed to all members. Margaret Medland from Kent became the first honourable member of the Platform.
Mecklenburg-Vorpommern hosted the 14th Platform meeting.Representatives from the following countries were present: Flanders-Belgium; Bellarussia; Hadju-Bihar – Hungary; Parnu – Estonia; Vaasa – Finland; Umea – Sweden; Kent – England; Luxembourg; Tallinn – Estonia; Eiffel-Ardennen – Germany; Bihar – Romania; Vorarlberg – Austria; Ukraïn; West-Finland – Suomi; Reykjavic – Iceland; Lubljana- Slovenia; Basque - Spain and Umeå- Sweden
For the first time a whole week was planned to be able to discover this formal East-Germany country. A new logo was designed and came in use from that moment on.
Once again Vorarlberg hosted the 15th Platform meeting with
participants from Belarus; Flanders – Belgium; Eifel-Ardennes, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Tallin – Estonia; Vaasa – Finland; Hadju-Bihar – Hungary; Liechtenstein; Luxembourg; Ljubljana – Slovenia; Vorarlberg – Austria.; Stavanger – Norway Workshops were held on the EU Programme “Youth”; future principles of the Platform and further possibilities to work together; the Homepage on the Internet and practical organisation of the camps. The Declaration was discussed and revised thoroughly and it was agreed that it should be put on the Homepage once it had been agreed in Luxemburg. Platform members and member status was agreed.
The 16th Platform meeting met in Luxembourg with representatives from Flanders – Belgium; Eifel-Ardennes, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Tallin – Estonia; West – Finland – Suomi; Hadju-Bihar – Hungary; Reykjavik – Iceland; Liechtenstein; Stavanger – Norway; Ljubljana – Slovenia; Vorarlberg – Austria; Kent – England; Lublin – Poland; San Marino An introduction was given as to the five actions in the EU Programme “Youth”. The “Practical Organisation of Camps” was discussed and re-written to fit in with the “Youth” programme. It was agreed that The Platform should consider other aspects of youth work as well as being a network for youth exchanges. There was discussion as to how the informal network copes with getting larger and was agreed that it should do what it is able to do and that support should be given to new members. It was agreed that the country offering the annual Platform meeting should offer an international training leaders course as well as the international camp. Sad news came from Basque – Spain: our friend Ruiz Koldo passed away...no more activities will be organized anymore in that region.
West-Finland, Finland once again hosted the 17th Platform meeting. Representatives attended from Flanders – Belgium; Eifel-Ardennes, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Tallin and Pärnu– Estonia; Hadju-Bihar – Hungary; Reykjavik – Iceland; Liechtenstein; Luxemburg; Stavanger – Norway; Kosice – Slovakia; Ljubljana – Slovenia; Vorarlberg – Austria; Kent – England; Lublin – Poland; San Marino ; Belarussia ; Olomouc – Chech R.and Murcia – Spain
For the first time the 18th Platform meeting was held in Slovenia with participants from Flanders – Belgium; Eifel-Ardennes, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Veneto – Italy; Tallin – Estonia;Serbia-Montenegro; West-Finland-Soumi; Hadju-Bihar – Hungary; Liechtenstein; Luxemburg; Stavanger – Norway; Kosice – Slovakia; Ljubljana – Slovenia; Vorarlberg – Austria; Lublin – Poland; San Marino ; Belarussia ; Olomouc – Chech R.and Murcia – Spain
The 19th Platform meeting met again in Hadju-Bihar, Hungary with delegates from Liechtenstein, Luxemburg, Lublin – Poland, Serbia Montenegro, Ljubljana – Slovenia, Murcia – Spain, Ukraïn, Vorarlberg – Austria; Flanders- Belgium ; Olomouc – Chech R.; Tallinn – Estonia ; West-Finland – Suomi; Eiffel-Ardennen – Germany; Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Turino – Italy
Flanders held the 20th Platform meeting in Gent . This was the second time. Participants from the following regions took part: Liechtenstein, Luxemburg, Lublin – Poland, Serbia Montenegro, Ljubljana – Slovenia, Murcia – Spain, Ukraïn, Vorarlberg – Austria; Flanders- Belgium ; Olomouc – Chech R.; Tallinn – Estonia ; West-Finland – Suomi; Eiffel-Ardennen and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Turino – Italy; Reykjavic – Iceland; Hadju-Bihar – Hungary; Umeå/Robertfors – Sweden; Kent – England; Istanbul –Turkey and Novgorod – Russia
Margaret Medland and Frantz Muller, two of the founders were asked to give an overview of the history of the Platform. Besides visits to different organisations in Gent who already participated in Platform activities and overview of the European White paper was given and discussion groups on inclusion, volunteering and engagement of young people and participation with inputs of experts were part of the programme; Besides that typical topics for the Platform were discussed in different workshops: communication in the Platform also linked to the website, ambitions for the Platform, the new programma ‘Youth’, what could be useful for the Platform and finaly : instruments to make the Platform work for the next 5 years.
The 21th Platform meeting met again in Tallinn - Estonia with delegates from Hadju-Bihar-Hungary ; Liechtenstein, Luxemburg, Lublin – Poland, Liepaja- Latvia; Galway – Ireland; Ljubljana – Slovenia, Murcia – Spain, Vorarlberg – Austria; Flanders- Belgium ; Olomouc – Chech R.; West-Finland – Suomi; Eiffel-Ardennen, Lower Franconia and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Turino and Vercelli – Italy; Kent – England; Umeå/Robertfors Sweden
For the first time a Platform meeting was hold in Spain, in Murcia. They managed to have representatives for the 22-nd Platform meeting out of 22 regions, namely: Tallinn - Estonia Hadju-Bihar-Hungary ; Liechtenstein, Luxemburg, Lublin – Poland, Liepaja- Latvia; Galway – Ireland; Ljubljana – Slovenia, Vorarlberg – Austria; Flanders- Belgium ; Olomouc – Chech R.; West-Finland – Suomi; Eiffel-Ardennen, Lower Franconia and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Turino and Vercelli – Italy; Kent – England , Corinthia – Greece ; Umeå/Robertfors Sweden and Paris – France
Besides the normal points on the agenda a input was done on ‘how to become a fan of the Platform network with some testimonies, good practice and examples. Members worked in working groups on 4 study cases on different aspects of an exchange project. And a new website was presented by West-Finland. Furthermore there was a presentation of a long term strategy for the Platform. Besides that we remember the singing and Flamenco performances of our collegues around the pool in the free moments!
21 regions attended the 23-th Platform meeting in Lublin – Poland; Tallinn - Estonia Hadju-Bihar-Hungary ; Liechtenstein, Luxemburg, Ljubljana – Slovenia, Vorarlberg – Austria; Flanders- Belgium ; Olomouc – Chech R.; West-Finland – Suomi; Eiffel-Ardennen, Lower Franconia and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Turino and Vercelli – Italy; Kent – England; Galway – Ireland and Corinthia – Greece
Besides a presentation on the youthwork in Poland, there was a follow-up on last years discussions on the long term stratehgy, good practices and the outcomes of the Vercelli seminar on local youth policies were presented. A session ‘Going back to the roots was implemented and half a day working in workshops was included.
What can be considered as a milestone in the Platform is the organisation of the 24-th Platform meeting in Novgorod-Russia! Delegates of 20 regions gathered in this wonderfull city: Tallinn – Estonia; Hadju-Bihar – Hungary; Liechtenstein; Luxemburg; Vorarlberg – Austria; Flanders – Belgium; West-Finland – Suomi; Eifel-Ardennen, Lower Franconia and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Turino and Vercelli – Italy; Kent – England; Limoges – France; Stavanger – Norway; Kosice - Slovakia; Karelia- Russia and Corinthia – Greece; Murcia – Spain.
The peculiarities of working with Russian countries were presented. Also a new website proposal was accepted and an agreement was made on who would maintain the site. Novgorod managed to give us a bath in the real Russian culture.
Sad news reached us from Kent, where one of the founders of the Platform Network, Mister David Jones, suddenly passed away on the 3-rd of October!
The 25th General Meeting was organized by Germany – Mecklenburg Vorpommern: Karin Baresel. Delegates of 24 regions: Olomouc – Czech Republic; Tallinn – Estonia; Hadju-Bihar – Hungary; Calvados – France; Liechtenstein; Galway – Ireland; Luxemburg; Vorarlberg – Austria; Flanders – Belgium ; Finland – Suomi; Eifel-Ardennen, Lower Franconia and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Turino and Vercelli – Italy; Kent – England ; Limoges – France; Kosice – Slovakia; Novgorod – Russia; Lublin – Poland; Western Pomerania – Poland; Ljubljana – Slovenia; Murcia – Spain; Robertfors – Sweden.
We were concentration on networking and evaluating and improving our cooperation.
The 26th General Meeting was organized by Italy – Vercelli. Delegates of 20 regions: Olomouc – Czech Republic; Tallinn – Estonia; Hadju-Bihar – Hungary; Liechtenstein; Galway – Ireland;Luxemburg; ;Vorarlberg – Austria; Flanders – Belgium; Finland – Suomi; Eifel-Ardennen, Lower Franconia and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Turino and Vercelli – Italy; Kent – England; Corinthia – Greece; Kosice – Slovakia; Ljubljana – Slovenia; Murcia – Spain; Famalicao – Portugal.
The main theme was European Voluntary Service. We also did a workshop about the future of Platform Network. It was based on SWAT analyse.
The 27th General Meeting was organized by Germany – Würzburg. Delegates of 22 regions: Olomouc – Czech Republic; Tallinn – Estonia; Liechtenstein; Galway – Ireland; Luxemburg; Vorarlberg – Austria; Flanders – Belgium; Finland – Suomi; Eifel-Ardennen, Lower Franconia and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Turino and Vercelli – Italy; Kent – England; Limoges – France; Kosice – Slovakia; Western Pomerania – Poland; Ljubljana – Slovenia; Murcia – Spain;Corinthia – Greece; Robertfors – Sweden; Famalicao – Portugal.
We worked on the theme of intergenerational comunication. The meeting was based on the Eurpean Year of Active Aging and Solidarity. New constitution of Platform Network was accapted, done by Ralf Ollinger, Christina Gündling, Iris Ott and Clemens Rüdisser. Margareth Medland and Liz Heany proposed a text about history of Platform Network.
The 28th General Meeting was organized by Finland – Kokkola. Delegates of 19 regions: Olomouc – Czech Republic; Tallinn – Estonia; Liechtenstein; Galway – Ireland; Luxemburg; Flanders – Belgium; Finland – Suomi; Eifel-Ardennen, Lower Franconia and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Germany; Turino – Italy; Limoges – France; Kosice – Slovakia; Murcia – Spain; Corinthia – Greece; Robertfors – Sweden; Famalicao – Portugal.
The subject of our meeting was evaluation. We were talking about international programs supporting young people`s enterpreneurship and employability. We also discussed how we can show learning in mobility programs.
Margaret E. Medland, November 2005
Katrien van Belle, November 2010
Ritva Saarikettu, June 2014
A little poem of Platform Network's history - by Margaret Medland
In ’83 it all began
When officers of youth from Kent ran
To Luxembourg Service of Youth to see
If they could help them run camps by three
Or four weeks in 1985
When the International Year of Youth was to be live.
With co-operation and hard work, Kent moved
Fifty young people per week by four
To enjoy and share activities core
To having fun with peers from countries different
To what they had experienced before.
A meeting held in Luxembourg in ‘86
Evaluated the work that had been done.
With Belgium, Trier, Metz, Eifel Ardennes,
Vorarlberg, Liechtenstein and Kent
Agreeing that it had been good
And to continue with the work they should.
Thus a platform for inter-regional youth exchange,
Based on ‘A New European Dimension’,
The first conference of European Youth Ministers had recommended,
With Luxembourg in control, The Platform was founded
And twelve activities for ’87 were bounded
In booklets for distribution to their staff
To encourage young people with whom they worked
To mix with others and not to shirk
Communication in different tongues
Or trying activities and singing songs.
In ’87 St Gallen joined the band
Of countries dedicated to expand
The work of The Platform and agreed
That education, not just travel, was the key
To success in the activities offered
And review and evaluation was offered.
The ’88 meeting, it was cancelled.
In ’89 the CDEJ was held
With Luxembourg, Liechtenstein and San Marino.
They agreed the principles for the activities,
Approved by St Gallen & Vorarlberg
With Kent to remain a partner full.
All attended San Marino for Platform meeting three
And the activities were agreed
To host the meeting and the activities plan
For the next four years, but not yet to expand.
However when in ’90 Vorarlberg hosted,
They expanded the invitations to include
Other countries with whom they had posted
And celebrated ten years of youth exchanges.
Assessment and offers of new activities were made
And plans for the next three years were laid.
In ’91 Kent hosted the meeting
And safety rules and sources of funding
Discussed. The Platform consolidated,
Agreeing its three main aims should be:
To improve youth exchanges and mobility
Of young people, and to further and promote
All youth exchange, however remote.
We returned to Luxembourg in ‘92
When details of training of young people
As International Animateurs was given.
The results and implications, of the Luxembourg Presidency
Of the EEC, for youth workers and young people was told
To the fourteen countries and regions represented.
Again Vaasa hosted in ’93 and Sweden and Estonia joined
With representatives thirty five
From sixteen countries or regions Europe wide,
Who had practitioners brought, who worked
On the development of youth camps
Resulting in papers two:
‘The Way Forward for Good Practice in International Camps’
And ‘Preparation of a Youth Camp’
Whilst the others considered participation.
The papers were discussed and agreed
As policy that all members should heed.
More countries/regions joined in ’94
When Hungary opened up its doors.
A ‘Declaration for the Platform’ was presented,
Agreed and signed by all, with no dissenters.
Thus ‘The Debrecen Declaration’ formalised
Terms of reference for ‘The European Platform
For Inter-Regional Youth Exchange’.
’95 saw meetings two as change of date
...to be continued...
Invitation to the initial Platform Network camps in 1985