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EACEA National Policies Platform


10. Youth work

10.2 Administration and governance of youth work

Last update: 20 March 2023
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  1. Governance
  2. Cross-sectoral cooperation


The department of youth of the Ministry of Education, Children and Youth is the main actor in policy-making on youth work on the national level. It is in charge of the definition of the objectives of youth work and the coordination of policies in the field of youth work. It also supports NGOs (e.g. youth organisations) by funding and provides conceptual work for the open youth centres at local or regional level.

The National Youth Service as a point of contact, information, counselling and support for actors in the field of youth work. It is in charge of the youth work's quality assurance. According to the 2016 revised Youth Law (loi du 24 avril 2016 portant modification de la loi modifiée du 4 juillet 2008 sur la jeunesse), quality assurance is guaranteed on a regular basis. Furthermore, the National Youth Service offers training programmes and courses for young people and for professional youth workers.

At local or regional level, municipalities are important supporters of youth work. They provide funding for open youth work in the local youth centres and are involved in the conceptual work of youth centres.

Youth organisations take part in the development of policies regarding the development of policies in the field of youth work within the framework of the established mechanisms of youth participation (Higher council for Youth and the national structured dialogue, see: Structures of decision making). 

Cross-sectoral cooperation

The cross-sectoral cooperation of youth work and its integration into other policy and practical fields has been strengthened since the early 2000s. This includes mainly the fields of formal education and housing policy.
The 2017 Law on Secondary Education (loi du 29 août 2017 portant sur l'enseignement secondaire) includes the development of youth work services in schools. It aims at strengthening the link between schools and youth work. According to the law, schools are obligated to draft a school development plan (plan de développement scolaire) by which extracurricular activities in the field of non-formal education and youth work are defined.

Youth work is also involved in the field of housing policy for young people. The Ministry of Education, Children and Youth, together with the Ministry of Housing, has inaugurated several specific youth housing units (Jugendwunnen) at local level for young people between 18 and 30 years of age where they can get support and guidance from youth workers.