Lehendakari: "The Basque Youth Cooperating and the NGOs for Development sensitize society positively"
- The basque President (Lehendakari), together with Minister Beatriz Artolazabal, Marcos Muro, Ander Añibarro and Paul Ortega, participates in the 25th Anniversary of the Cooperating Basque Youth developed in Zorrotzaurre
- The Lehendakari is grateful for "his experience of help and cooperation focused on the areas of health, women, children, the elderly, the environment, food, training or sustainable economic development".
- 2,200 young people and 18 NGDOs have participated in various cooperation projects
- Each summer 100 young people dedicate more than two months to help and develop social initiatives
The basque President, Iñigo Urkullu, believes that "the basque Youth that develops cooperation tasks in different parts of the world every summer, and the Non-Governmental Organizations for Development (NGDO) sensitize society positively thanks to their experience of aid and cooperation focused on the areas of health, women, children, the elderly, the environment, food, training or sustainable economic development".
Along with the Minister of Employment and Social Policies, Beatriz Artolazabal, Vice-Minister Marcos Muro, the director of Youth, Ander Añibarro, and the director of the Basque Cooperation Agency Paul Ortega, Iñigo Urkullu participated in the 25th Anniversary of the creation of Basque Cooperating Youth developed in the Open Space of Bilbao and the participation in this time of 2,200 young people in various development projects in cities and villages in Asia, Africa and America.
"The basque Youth makes the most of the opportunity to work, learn and help other people. Those who participate in this event today are a great image of the Basque Country (Euskadi) in the places where you have developed your experience of cooperation. As basque President, I recognize and applaud your human and solidary quality, committed to volunteering, one of the social pillars on which we are building the future of the European Union "indicated Iñigo Urkullu.
As detailed by the basque President, "those hundreds of young basques have not hesitated to move for several months -in their time of vacation and leisure- to distant places and settings with very precarious living conditions. In these distant parts of the planet, our Cooperating Youth has taught children to maintain healthy habits in their health and education and has explained to women in cities and villages the need for women's empowerment to build fairer and more just democratic societies".
"The Basque Youth has historically been committed to development and solidarity" has qualified the basque President. "Also, depending on the moment and historical trends, our youth has been committed to the expansion of knowledge, research, fishing, transport, adventure or the search for new horizons. If in a past time those names and surnames were predominantly masculine -Elkano, Txurruka, Etxaniz, Lopez de Loyola or Jaso- who today champion solidarity and cooperation are more women than men: Eizagirre, Burutxaga, Hernando, Darretxe-Urrutxi, or Zarrandikoetxea to name a few. We have come a long way in this aspect of equality".
According to the basque President, "Basque youth take advantage of the opportunity to work, learn and help other people. Those who participate in this event today are a great image of the Basque Country in the places where you have developed your experience of cooperation. As President Urkullu, I recognize and applaud your human and solidary quality, committed to volunteering, one of the social pillars on which we are building the future of the European Union”.
The event was presented by Beatriz Martínez de Antoñana and Emilio López has dedicated a recognition to the NGDOs that collaborate in the Cooperating Basque Youth program. Zorione Fundazuri has explained, on behalf of all the cooperators, how various personal experiences have been collected in a book presented at the meeting. Irantzu Lekue and Noélia Ruiz have presented the artistic installation and the musical interpretation.
The basque President commented to the audience that "after that experience you observe a greater human sensibility and social commitment. A magnificent example for future generations to observe an open attitude to solidarity and collaboration for those who need it most. The 25 years of work of Basque Cooperating Youth are perfectly summarized in those 25 stories and interviews that express the experience of 25 participants in this program. As Lehendakari I´m proud of this generational change that our society is living with people like you and yourselves. Our Country, with this rich human capital, has a great future ahead ".
Together with Ander Añibarro, director of Youth, the Minister Beatriz Artolazabal has also thanked donors and NGDOs for their work for 25 years: "You have learned, taught and contributed to making the world a little better. Your vocation and work has taken the name of the Basque Country very far".
Minister Artolazabal: a new selection
"I have been fortunate to participate during several weekends in Barria (basque citie) throughout the selection process of those who have contributed this summer to the tasks organized by the NGDOs in different parts of the world and I have received, almost instantaneously, the images and comments that from your missions from Africa, Asia or America you have reported us" added Artolazabal.
"Soon we will begin the preparation of a new group of one hundred young people that next summer will contribute, together with the NGDOs that are here, to make a more just and sustainable planet. Surely, those who already have stable jobs and presence in the various Basque social activities, or who are about to do so, you will observe an exemplary dedication thanks to the competencies that you have developed in the Cooperation" explained Mrs. Artolazabal.