5.3 Youth representation bodies
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European Youth Parliament (EYP) encourages young people independent thinking and encourages the public to actively participate in public life. EYP consists of 40 European countries, national committees, involving thousands of young people volunteering incentives. European Youth Parliament started activities in Lithuania in the beginning of 2013.
European Youth Parliament (EYP) is one of the largest European institutional platforms, whose activities are focused on the political debate, intercultural encounters, political awareness and the exchange of ideas among young people from all over Europe. Youth Parliament (EYP) encourage young people independent thinking and encourages the public to actively participate in public life. EYP Lithuania mission is to encourage young people's awareness, an interest in Lithuania, European policy and prevailing social problems; to provide an opportunity for young people to express their views; to develop their personal abilities; to promote inter-cultural, between religious, ideological and practical exchange.
The Lithuanian Youth Organizations Council (usually referred to as LiJOT) is the biggest non-governmental, non-profit umbrella structure for Lithuanian national youth organizations and regional unions of youth organizations. Currently LiJOT has 72 members (non-governmental youth organizations) and represents more than 200 000 young people in Lithuania. LiJOT is an organization representing the interests of youth and framing youth policy, the Government’s partner forming the constitution of the Council of Youth Affairs. LiJOT is a full member of the European Youth Forum. Activities are carried out at the regional, national and international level.
Agency of Youth Affairs implements the established national youth policy measures which encourage young people’s motivation to engage in active public life and take part in addressing youth problems. The key objectives of the agency include: coordinating the activities of state institutions and agencies with regard to youth policy, developing and implementing national youth policy programmes and instruments, and analysing the situation of youth, youth organisations and organisations working with youth in Lithuania.
Lithuanian National Union of Students (LSS)
LSS is independent and non-governmental organization that was founded in 1992. This organization was created by country’s most active students’ representatives. LSS represents the rights of Lithuanian students and unites higher education institutions’ student unions from all over the country. LSS represents and defends Lithuanian students’ interests on the highest level. In order to fulfill this mission LSS organizes events and actions both on national and international levels. These actions are taken in order to draw society’s attention to current problems, create and improve the education system, promote an intercultural partnership between students and whole academic community and improve society’s views on students. LSS broadens and strengthens the contacts with governmental institutions, national and international youth and student organizations as well as other organizations and education institutions.
LSS members are student representative organizations. These organizations are managed by representatives chosen by students. LSS Council which is responsible for outlying the main LSS activities is formed from these representatives. Student representative organizations also delegate representatives to the highest LSS management structure – Conference. The Conference elects LSS president every two years and also evaluates president and his/her bureau work annually.
Lithuanian National Union of Students is an active member of the European Students Union (ESU), the Nordic Union of Students (NOM), the Knowledge Economy Forum (KEF) and founder of the Student Union of the Baltic States. LSS also cooperates with the Youth Affairs Department of Social Security and Labour ministry, governmental institutions responsible for education politics and other organizations. LSS is an association funded by members’ fees, support received from individuals, charities and charitable donations (donated) in accordance to provisions in Law on Charity and Support Funds as well as donations from non-governmental organizations, international public organizations (associations) and other legally obtained funds.
Lithuanian School Students’ Union (LMS) public, voluntary, non-profit organization, the only organization representing the interests of Lithuanian schoolchildren and uniting Lithuanian student self-governments. Currently, LMS has 37 branches in Lithuanian municipalities, where more than 1,000 volunteers work, the organization unites more than 550 Lithuanian school student municipalities. LMS represents secondary school students by forming Education and Youth policies, educating school students with urgent issues, joining them in common activities by cooperating with governmental and non-governmental institutions, creating a community for schools and their students. LMS is the main platform of education and youth policy development and implementation for school students, cooperating with government, society, business and education sectors. LMS aims to encourage school students’ initiative and collaboration. LMS represents school students by forming an impact of Youth and an Education policy as well by collaborating with governmental and non-governmental institutions; The organization unites school students to solve common problems and collects, analyzes and promotes school student councils guidelines in Lithuania as well as develops international relations between school students and organizes meetings, debates and conferences on relevant topics for students. The organization was founded at the Lithuanian School Student Conference in 1996. On 13-14th of December 1998, at the 2nd Lithuanian School Student Conference it was decided to register the organization in the Ministry of Justice of Lithuania by changing its name to the Lithuanian School Student Union (Lietuvos moksleivių sąjunga or LMS). On 18th of May 1999, the Lithuanian School Student Union got its official status as a non-profit organization. Lithuania pupil's union consists of the President, Board, Revision Commission and the Office. Union unites not only secondary school students councils but also volunteers.
Council of Municipal Youth Organizations (Round Table) is a non-governmental youth organization whose main goal is to unite youth organizations operating in the municipality and to represent them. Round tables delegate representatives of youth organizations to the municipal youth affairs council, represent and defend the interests of young people in the municipality, contribute to the formation and implementation of the municipal youth policy. The Agency of Youth Affairs annually invites Round Tables to submit applications for the tender for funding programs for strengthening the Councils of Regional Youth Organizations.
Other bodies in Lithuania that are most active and important assemblies of youth representation are full or observer members of LiJOT.