Constanta, Craiova and Galati are the three cities that will compete for the title of “Youth Capital of Romania”, the 2020-2021 edition. This is the fifth edition of the program, and the winner city will be awarded this title from May 2, 2020 to May 1, 2021, during which period it will implement and conduct a complex urban development program for young people.
In addition to the right to have this title for 365 days, the winner city will also receive a EUR 50,000 prize offered by Banca Comerciala Romana, which is a co-initiator of the program.
“Romanian cities are facing the departure of the young people. They either appreciate that the opportunities abroad are more attractive, or they are not fully satisfied with the evolution of their communities, but this migration is a fact. I believe our youngsters can build a future right in their hometowns and they can contribute in their development, but to this end, the youth organizations, the public and the private sectors must collaborate and shape a common view, at least for a medium-term period. I salute the candidates’ initiatives and I wish them luck throughout the competition”, stated András Farkas – the PONT Group, the Secretary General of the Governance for Youth Capital of Romania.
The representatives of the three cities submitted the candidacy files for the Round I in electronic format on the dedicated candidacy platform. They had a number of technical specifications, as well as a motivation letter that accompanied the description of the concept of the proposed program.
“We are delighted to see the development of the program and its impact among youngsters. Youth Capital of Romania is a program for them, a program that helps us speak more about them and their problems. We want to keep them inside the country, but it’s not enough to encourage them and make promises. Young people need support and access to everything that a decent living means: good jobs, a home, technology, mobility and the feeling of social affiliation; they need an environment where they love to live and develop, and the program helps them create the environment in which they want to live”, stated Nicoleta Deliu, Head of Corporate Communication and Community Business Department of BCR.
The candidacy files will be analyzed by an independent jury consisting of representatives of the non-governmental sector, private sector, public institutions and youth organizations of the political parties in the Parliament. The finalist cities selected according to the judging criteria will submit a full candidacy in the second round. The short list of the finalist will be published on July 31, and until September 30, the finalist cities will develop the concept proposed in an extended candidacy file.
“I believe the young people in the country need opportunities and reasons to boost them get involved and wish to change something. I am sure we, the youngsters, can achieve everything we want, but I believe that we must give a trust vote to this end to those around us. It’s extremely important for us to develop partnerships with the parties who can support us, and I’m speaking her about the local public authorities and the private sector. I am glad to see that the youngsters from Constanta, Craiova and Galati understood this and want to contribute to the sustainable development of their communities”, stated Mihai Dragos, the President of the Romanian Youth Council.
“Since the beginning of the pilot edition, in 2016, until today, Youth Capital of Romania has become the clear expression of the feeling that together we can change something. We are glad that more and more Romanian youngsters want to get involved and change things at local level”, stated Tudor Ogner, the President of the Cluj Youth Federation.
The “Youth Capital of Romania” program is working on similar principles to the European Youth Capital – a title won by Cluj-Napoca in 2015 – and was initiated by the Romanian Youth Council, Cluj Youth Federation, PONT Group and Banca Comerciala Romana (BCR). Its first edition was held in 2016, and the first Romanian city who won this title was Timisoara, followed by Bacau, Baia Mare and Iasi, who officially took over the mandate on May 2, 2019. The Ministry of Youth and Sports (MTS) is a strategic partner of the program.