8.10 Current debates and reforms
According the Government work programme 2020-2024: “We [The Government] will continue to invest in the cultural infrastructure, establishing Youth Cultural Centers in several cities as specialized institutions that will develop the cultural needs of young people, in order to improve the quality of their lives and keep them from leaving the country. Depending on
the needs, these will be multimedia centers with multi-purpose areas: a cinema hall, theater stage, concert stage, showroom, bowling alley, buffet or business-cafes, etc.”
The Youth centers whose establishment was foreseen in the Law on Youth Participation and Youth Policies (Закон за младинско учество и младински политики) adopted in 2020 are also crucial reform in this area. According the Law, Youth centers are places where programs aimed at improving the well-being of young people and their personal, social and professional development are prepared and implemented, and information of important interest of young people and other aspects of life are shared.
According to this law, all municipalities are obliged to enable the functioning of at least one youth center within 5 years from the adoption of the law.
At the beginning of 2020, in cooperation between the Agency for Youth and Sports and the Union for Youth Work, the process of opening youth centers in the municipalities of Bitola, Veles, Kavadarci and Kumanovo began. In accordance with the signed memoranda of cooperation, the four municipalities undertook to provide space for the youth centers and to cover the running costs of their work, while the Agency for Youth and Sports undertook the obligation to equip the centers with the necessary equipment and materials. The Union for Youth Work, on the other hand, has committed itself through local member organizations to providing youth work programs that will be implemented by youth workers.