Starting the European Year of Youth meeting students from Sorbonne University

The role played by FEBA, EESC and Lombardy Region Delegation in Brussels  

On 20 January 2022, together with representatives from the Lombardy Region Delegation in Brussels and the European Economic and Social Committee, FEBA met a group of students from Sorbonne University who were visiting Brussels to discover more on EU affairs and learn about possible professional careers in the capital of the EU.

On 14 October 2021 the European Commission adopted its formal proposal to make 2022 the European Year of Youth. With this initiative the EU wants to engage all young people to build a better future, that is greener, more inclusive, and digital, and to give young people more and better opportunities for the future.

The meeting with the students from Sorbonne University was the occasion to bring the EU closer to them while listening and gathering their ideas and inputs.

The encounter was hosted at the premises of the Lombardy Region Delegation in Brussels and began with a presentation describing the interaction between the Regional Government and various EU-level actors with the goal of explaining the coordination between regional and European policies and the activities carried out by the Lombardy Region in Brussels with EU institutions and stakeholders as well as other European regions.

Following that, FEBA took the floor raising awareness on the paradox of food waste and food insecurity in Europe and giving an overview on the establishment of Food Banks in Europe and the role played by the European Food Banks Federation. Related to that, FEBA’s mission, activities, and main stakeholders have been presented before focussing on two key areas of policy and advocacy: the work of FEBA and its EU Working Group aimed to promote and facilitate food donations – for instance, in the framework of the EU Platform on Food Losses and Food Waste – and to support the most deprived citizens through the implementation of the Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD) at national level. Regarding the first topic, the acceleration at EU level towards food waste prevention has been summarised and illustrated through the concrete examples of recent EU Regulation amendments facilitating the redistribution of surplus food. As regards the second topic, the students received an introduction to the concrete actions taken by the EU to alleviate the worst forms of poverty, among others food deprivation, and were briefed on the implementation of the FEAD by FEBA Members, as well as its impact.

A presentation hold by the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) constituted the third part of the event. Besides an introduction to its functions and activities, the students received information on opportunities and procedures to apply for an internship at this European institution.

Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Commission. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.