9.2 Administration and governance
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The main actor involved in youth’s contribution to global processes of policy-making, implementation and follow-up is the Youth Council of the French-spaeking Community of Belgium. As official advisory body, it collects 16 – 30 years old young people’s opinion and then relieve it to the politics. The Youth Council defends young people’s interests and represents them at national and international level.
The youth council takes part in regular meetings at UN-level by sending young people to represent the points of view of belgian youth. Environment and sustainable development are the main topic discussed.
The Minister of Youth at the French-speaking Community level launched in 2016 a programme to stimulate youth participation at local level. Young people are invited to launch projects, participate, contribuate to global processes within their municipalities.
In Wallonia, the Minister of environment and ecological transition organises every year a Youth Parliament on environmental issues. The first yaeer, fifty-five students from Universities and Higher education School were invited to debate. They formulated 8 propositions that have been taken into account for the writing of the second Sustainable development Walloon Strategy of 7 July 2016. Since then, the parliament is renewed every year. The last parliament took place in February and March 2018. Thirty-five students formulated 10 policy recommendations to boost circular economy in Wallonia.
There is a wide range of associations working with young people on global processes. The association Idea Network (Réseau Idée), for instance, gathers around 130 associations working on sustainable developemnt and environmental issues.
The French-speaking Community, the Walloon Region and the Region of Brussels Capital signed in 2011 a cooperation agreement related to the education to environment, nature and sustainable development.
The objective is to promote and develop education to environment and to nature with perspective of sustainable development to education to citizenship. The time frame is 6 years and it is renewable. It fosters the implementation of a global strategy for the three entities and underlines the importance of environmental stakes for which pupils must be prepared.
A first cooperation agreement was signed in 2004 by the French-speaking Community and the Walloon Region. The 2011’s agreement includes a new signatory: the Region of Brussels-Capital. It develops then a partnership which covers all schools on the French-speaking Community’s territory.
The current cooperation Agreement which covers the time period of 2021-2024 etasblishes an action plan with 5 main cooperation objectives:
- Cooperation in order to integrate "education to environment" in the schools curriculum and in the teacher's training ;
- Cooperation in order to support school in including sustainable development in their management ;
- Cooperation to provide quality pedagogical tools to schools ;
- Cooperation in the field of information, promotion and exchanges of good practices ;
- Cooperation to promote and implement the Agreement cooperation.
For more information on education to environment and sustainable development, see section 9.5 Green volunteering, production and consumption.