As citizens of Europe this is what we believe and strive to enact:
The Union is founded on the values of respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities. These values are common to the Member States in a society in which pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality between women and men prevail.
(Ref: Article 2 of the Treaty on European Union)
On the 20 Oct. 2022 Maynooth University hosted the closing conference of the Europe for Citizens funded Foundations for Futures Europe project ‘Thinking About Europe’. Over eighty participants attended on the day. To begin there were reflections from each of the partners upon their work with students, participants, stakeholders across a whole range of issues affecting the lives of citizens across the continent. This was followed by an interactive tech session that got real time responses to people's attitude to Europe. Followed again by a session of Table Talks where the values of Democracy, Respect, Participation and Inclusion were discussed and critiqued bringing up some challenging ideas for the conference to consider. The afternoon workshop sessions ranged from Poverty and the current cost of living crisis, to Health and Wellbeing, to Employment, Climate Justice to European Identity and Migration. As this consortium is a unique collection of universities and civil society organisations there was lots of scope for learning from each other and a lot of fun in trying to find a common human understanding to help us make a Europe that works for all people across the continent based on social justice, inclusion and equality. The relationships that have flourished over the 14 months of the project have been built on respect and trust. Rather than this being a final end, we hope very much that is it really just the beginning. See here for our final report of events
The aim of this project is to develop a network of Higher Education and Civil Society (NGOs) Partners to engage citizens in debates and discussion groups around the future direction of the European project.
These groups will explore the common socio-political and economic views and experiences of European citizens, across a range of age groups and within the context of social and digital inclusion, using adult education, community development and experiential learning theory and practice.
It will utilize academic and advocacy staff in various settings, both institutional and community, providing a structured educational encounter which will act as a base for exploring the shared European experience in terms of history, culture, values and ideals.