Martin Rümmelein, BSSSC Youth Board Member and Agnes Lusti, BSSSC Youth Network.
Photo: CBSS Secretariat, 2018.
BSSSC youth having their say in the future of the Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS)
1-2 February 2018, Martin Rümmelein and Agnes Lusti from the BSSSC Youth Network met with other representatives from CBSS Member States to give input and insight on forming the future role of the CBSS in the Baltic Sea Region.
The task of this independent group was to present statements for a vision for the Baltic Sea Region and the role of the CBSS beyond 2020. To help give input, the German Martin Rümmelein, BSSSC Youth Board Member, and the Norwegian Agnes Lusti, BSSSC Youth Network, were sent from the BSSSC network to attend the seminar.
CBSS post 2020?
Given the various ages, backgrounds and experiences the discussion amongst the young Member States representatives proved to be dynamic and fruitful throughout the whole two days.
- The seminar was very well organized and within minutes the group worked together like it has been working together for a long time already. Together we created a vision for the Baltic on how we can work together to solve problems and create new innovation, said Rümmelein.
The young people identified three key policy areas to focus on – sustainable development, education and security.
On the area of sustainable development, among other things, the youths wanted the CBSS to invest in a holistic approach to sustainable development /mainstreaming cooperation on more levels. They wanted the CBSS to help empower the people, a tool to go from theory to action. They also wanted early implementation in school through sustainability literacy – invest in Go Green Generations.
In the area of education they, among other things, suggested creating a shared online platform for students and teachers: inclusive online courses, apps and other tools.
Within security they emphasised the need to create a higher level of social trust. This can be achieved by creating fora where you can discuss how to increase this. For example by arranging an annual forum to increase the stakeholder involvement.
They also asked for a revised communication strategy from the CBSS where they could have different target groups for their communication.
Read the rest of the detailed recommendations in the Paper "RECOMMENDATIONS FROM THE CBSS YOUTH VISION GROUP".
The importance of cross border cooperation
Both Lusti and Rümmelein emphasised that regional cooperation such as this is important.
- Cooperation in different fora such as the CBSS and BSSSC are important because with them we have better flow of information of how to resolve the problems we face. Regions might come up with different solutions to different problems - and we can learn from each other, says Lusti.
Rümmelein wants a Baltic Sea Region coordination office to make sure all the good work in the different organisations is gathered somewhere to create an overview. He is a strong believer in cooperation and belives it is extra important in these days due to recent tensions between contries.
- To maintain the peace that we have now in the Baltic region it's important to network and works together because it is always harder to hate someone that you are friends with than someone that you don´t know.
12. February 2018
The CBSS Youth Vision Group.
Photo: CBSS Secretariat, 2018.