10.2 Administration and governance of youth work
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The main actors involved in policy-making on youth work at the national level include the Commission for Youth and Sport Affairs of the Seimas (the Parliament) which controls youth policy implementing institutions. This institution is responsible for the formulation of the national youth policy, promotion of youth rights and exercising parliamentary control of institutions that implement youth policy, listens to the announcements of ministries and other state institutions (Department of Youth Affairs) and evaluates the information.
The coordination and implementation of policy measures on youth work is delegated to the Ministry of Social Security and Labour. It supervises the implementation of the Youth Policy Framework Law (with amendments in 2019) which has provisions on youth work as well as implementation of youth policy measures adopted by the European Commission. The Department of Youth Affairs under the Ministry of Social Security and Labour implements the objectives of the state youth policy, supervises the implementation of the Law on Youth Policy Framework. It acts as a state institution that works out and implements the national youth policy programs and measures, coordinates the activities of the state and municipal institutions in the of youth work, performs other activities relevant to youth, youth organizations, and organizations working with youth. The Department of Youth Affairs implements the objectives of the state youth policy through application of measures to encourage youth to acquire education, get work, and engage in active social life; takes part in solution of youth related problems; develops non-formal education.
The Ministry of Education is the main coordinating authority concerning to implementation of non-formal education policy and other Ministries (the Ministry of Culture, the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Economy and the Ministry of Agriculture) have their particular measures related to youth work due to horizontal priority of youth policy and cross-governmental responsibility in its implementation in Lithuania. The Council of Youth Affairs is a collegial advisory institution, functioning under the Department of Youth Affairs on social grounds, constituted on the basis of equal partnership from the representatives, delegated by the state institutions and the Lithuanian Youth Council (LiJOT). The task of the Council of Youth Affairs is to deal with the fundamental youth policy problems and give suggestions to the Department of Youth Affairs on the implementation of youth policy that meets the needs of youth and youth organizations. The decisions of the Council of Youth Affairs for the Department of Youth Affairs are of advisory nature. The Lithuanian Youth Council (LiJOT) provides suggestions to governmental institutions which work with youth problems and youth organizations. LiJOT is the biggest non-governmental, non-profit umbrella structure for Lithuanian national youth organizations and regional unions of youth organizations. LiJOT has 62 members (non-governmental youth organizations) and represents more than 200 000 young people in Lithuania. LiJOT is a full member of the European Youth Forum and coordinates EURODESK Lithuania. The main porpose of the Agency of International Youth Co-operation is to ensure the development of international youth cooperation and successful participation of Lithuanian youth in European Union programs for young people (through financial grants for project implementation).
The Youth Work Council under the Department of Youth Affairs under the Ministry of Social Security and Labor is an advisory body of the Department operating on a public basis, advising the Department on youth work issues. The main tasks of the Youth Work Council are to analyze and monitor the implementation of youth work in Lithuania, to consult and provide conclusions to the Department, to disseminate information to the public about the significance and importance of youth work for the development of society.
The Youth Work Council
- analyses the challenges of youth work;
- examines the youth work activities, the training of staff working with youth and/or submits recommendations and suggestions regarding the application, use and/or amendment of the existing legal acts regulating youth work;
- makes recommendations on the priorities for youth work (eg when considering funding competitions, forms of youth work, or other issues);
- analyses the issues of the state social policy related to the performance of youth work and its quality, and submits proposals to the Department of Youth Affairs;
- considers other strategic social policy issues related to the development of youth work;
- 6. prepares and presents conclusions on the issues formulated by the Department of Youth Affairs on the topic of youth work.
The Youth Work Council takes the form of meetings at which the members meet at least once every four months. The term of office of the Youth Work Council is 3 years.
The responsibilities of implementing policy measures related to youth work are divided between top-level and regional/local authorities. At the local level, municipalities are the main institutions responsible for the formulation and implementation of youth policy including policy measures on youth work. Councils for youth affairs at the municipal level are established on the principle of parity involving the representatives of municipal institutions and youth organizations by the decision of Municipal Councils. Regional youth councils can delegate representatives of youth organizations to municipal councils for youth affairs. Different committees of Municipal Council, as well as departments, institutions of Municipality Administration (educational institutions, psychological services, institutions of non-formal education (music and art schools, sports centers, youth centers, cultural centers, museums, libraries, etc.) formulate and implement youth policy in municipalities. A coordinator of youth affairs assists the municipal institutions to formulate and implement a municipal youth policy. A coordinator of youth affairs serves as a mediator between the politicians of the municipality, officers, and youth. A coordinator of youth affairs supervises and initiates measures, necessary for the performance of youth policy including policy measures on youth work. They provide institutions and persons with information on the implementation of youth policy in the municipality, cooperates with the Ministry of Social Security and Labour, the Department of Youth Affairs, and other institutions, youth organisations, non-formal youth groups, as well as take part in developing cooperation with the municipalities of foreign countries in the field of youth work.
The Ministry of Social Security and Labour is responsible for coordinating the implementation of the youth policy measures related to youth work. The Ministry is implementing the National youth policy development program for 2011-2019 through Action Plan for the periods of 2017-2019. In the action plans specific objectives, actions, terms of implementation, budget allocations, and responsible institutions for its implementation are indicated. Responsible institutions for the implementation of the Action Plan measures are the Ministry of Environment, Ministry of Culture, Ministry of Defence, the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education and Science, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Economy, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Agriculture, the Drug Control Department under the Government of Lithuania, Lithuanian Labour Exchange, and Council of Youth Affairs. There is no special body for cross-sectorial collaboration, however these institutions report to The Ministry of Social Security and Labor about implementation of the action plan measures related to youth policy every year.
The Methodology of Quality Improvement of Youth Organisations Performance has been developed to strengthen youth cross-sectorial cooperation and performance of youth organisations and provide a tool that would enable youth organisations to apply systematic evaluation of their efficiency and consistently seek for the improvement of quality. According to this methodology, the level of performance quality and problematic areas are being identified. Based on it, long-term and short-term recommendations for performance quality improvement and annual action plans are being submitted.