CEL on the way to European Parliament!

The EYE (European Youth Event) was the first European Event for CEL. We were one of the organizations that represented Cyprus and we sure hoped we treated it as the platform it was meant to be. Eight representatives, couple of dozen events and 3 days later, the delegates parted ways with a lot to share on an individual but also on a team perspective. So here is mine…and a glance of what will follow.

My most important event was a debate on Crisis Management…all about the management of the crisis that swept Europe and brought us to where we are today. Along with another 3 member of the team, we entered the Hemicycle on Saturday morning ready to listen to legislators talk about what this EP, coming to an end soon, did to ensure that situation won’t keep spiraling.

I won’t over expand on the several issues mentioned…but what I will tell you is that Greece and Cyprus were mentioned a lot. On many occasions. The ones I keep is:

1. Probably they were wrong on how they handled Greece’s crisis.

2. After what they did to Cyprus now they realized that the banks shouldn’t be rescued by anyone other than the owners and the creditors.

One of the panel members was kind enough to state the obvious. That young people should demand more. More democracy, more involvement, more..more…more…It’s our generation after all. It is our future.

Oh well thank you kind sir!

European Parliament Plenary Session EYE 2014

CEL’s position recorded in front of 900 participants in the single most important room of Europe is the following (more or less):

“ We are gathered here, the youth of Europe, in the eve of the election to bring ideas to the table for a better Europe. The panel members are preaching about us not demanding enough. Not demanding more, when at the same time the decisions coming out of this room, this exact room we are sitting in today, crippled half of the member states’ economies and turned most of them, especially the southern ones, into ginny pigs. Then you call us here 2 weeks before the elections, offering your mea culpa and urging us to demand more. So we will follow your kind advice and demand as clear and loud as possible: Stop experimenting, you are turning young people into beggars”

After that, all of us branched out, got the word out, spoke to people from all around Europe, and met with other people from Cyprus and Greece. We mingled, we argued and we were reminded that every effort starts with a single tiny step.

In the next few days you will find out about the EP role-playing seven-hour marathon, about sustainability, why a good idea is just not enough and how come together became (obviously) the anthem of this event!

Stay tuned!

(First published in Cypriot Enterprise Link’s website:)