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The main central authority responsible for the youth field is the Ministry of Family, Youth and Equal Opportunities, funded in January 2022. Until December 2021 the main central authority for youth was the Ministry of Youth and Sport.
At the local level, the Counties’ Structures on Family and Youth are the decentralized services of the central authority that cooperates with the central administration bodies for organising and promoting the activities for young people. According to Government decision regarding their organisation, Counties’ Structures on Family and Youth have the following responsibilities in the field of youth:
- implementing the national programmes in the field of youth (as well as the policies for family and equal opportunities),
- monitoring the implementation of the legislation the fields under their responsibility,
- cooperating with other local and central structures to organise cultural, artistic, leisure, educative, touristic activities for youth and family, both local and international,
- offering specialized support to other public bodies to create programmes for youth,
- offering counselling and information services for young people,
- creating a data-base of youth NGOs in the county,
- organising activities, seminars and trainings based on non-formal education methodologies
- organising youth camps,
- organising social programmes for vulnerable young people and children.
The Ministry of Family, Youth and Equal Opportunities was established in January 2022 (as part of the Government installed on November 25th 2021). According to the Government Decision on the organisation of the Ministry of Family, Youth and Equal Opportunities, in the field of youth, the ministry has the following responsibilities:
- ensures the implementation of the governmental programme and policies in the field of youth,
- establishes priorities, typology of projects / actions / activities for youth, budget for programs, projects, activities and elaborates action plans, procedures, methodologies, project calendars, monitoring and evaluation plans for youth activity;
- initiates, develops, implements and monitors youth legislation;
- carries out studies and analyses on youth and students issues;
- collaborates with central and local public authorities, institutional, social and organizational partners, internally and externally, in order to achieve the objectives in the field of youth;
- initiates, develops, organizes, finances, implements, monitors, evaluates programs, projects, activities and actions for domestic and international youth and finances projects on a competitive basis, in accordance with the law;
- establishes youth centres, in accordance with the law;
- elaborates and implements the plan for rehabilitation and extension of leisure centres and ensures the organization and administration of these leisure centres;
- ensures the organization, administration, rehabilitation and extension of student culture houses;
- provides specialist assistance to students and student association structures in the development of projects and programs aimed at boosting student participation, in its various forms, including by involving them in decision-making, stimulating student creativity, promoting student mobility in Europe and mitigating the impact of risk factors leading to marginalization and social exclusion;
- organizes directly or through subordinate institutions leisure activities, national camps, leisure camps, social camps, thematic camps for children, students and young people
While the National Youth Strategy 2015-2020 covered a very large set of themes, only four of the main priorities of the strategy are in the direct responsibility of the main decision making structure in the field of youth in Romania: the Ministry of Family, Youth and Equal Opportunities. These themes are:
- Non-formal learning
- Youth volunteering
- Youth public and political participation
- Youth leisure
Other themes of interest for the youth policy are employment, education, entrepreneurship and social-inclusion. However, youth is not central in these fields and there are very few policy measures directly dedicated to young people, as presented in the following sections of Youth Wiki.
For all these teams, as for the other in the Youth Strategy, the main information sources are the Youth Barometers that has been commissioned by the Ministry every two years between 2012 and 2020.
There is no National Agency for Youth organised in Romania. In 2010 the National Agency for Youth and the National Agency for Youth and Sport merged and become the Ministry of Youth and Sports, as provided by the Government Ordinance on the measurements to reorganise some activities in the field of youth and sport no. 15/2010. In January 2022 the administration of the youth field was transferred to the Ministry of Family, Youth and Equal Opportunities.
According to the Youth Strategy, the Ministry of Youth and Sports was responsible to draft a monitoring and evaluation plan of the Strategy. However, such plan was not drafted or aproved. As a result, an evidence-based monitoring/assessment/evaluation of the implementation of the national Youth Strategy has not been conducted until March 2022. An evaluation of the Ministry of Youth and Sports Programmes for Youth, including actions implementing the Youth Strategy have been commissioned in 2016 and published by the December 2016.
Monitoring of projects and actions under the Ministry of Youth and Sports Programmes for Youth is only done from the financial/budget point of view. Records are not centralised for evaluation purposes. This practice creates difficulties for the subsequent evaluations, as experienced in 2016 when the programmes evaluation has been conducted. In the absence of a monitoring and evaluation plan of the Youth Strategy, all evaluations made until December 2021 by the Ministry of Youth and Sports are ad-hoc and not periodical. Moreover, the results of the only evaluation available have not been used for the design of future Youth Programmes, as their framework remained unchanged in 2017 and the following years compared to 2016 and the previous years.
On the other hand, The Ministry of European Investments and Programmes conducted evaluations regarding the European programmes targeting young people:
- an evaluation report on the European Social Fund interventions targeting youth was commissioned in 2014 and delivered in 2015;
- the first evaluation report on the Youth Employment Initiative implementation until the end of 2015 and lessons learned from European Social Fund projects targeting NEETs was commissioned by the in 2015 and delivered in 2016. The second evaluation report on the Youth Employment Initiative has been conducted and published in 2019.
- The third evaluation of the Youth Employment Initiative was integrated in the evaluation of the Evaluation of the Operational Programme Human Capital – specific objectives regarding employment, published in December 2020.
These reports where only used in programming and organising the implementation of the European Social Fund programme on human capital for the period 2014-2020 and for programming the future use of the European Social Fund 2021-2027, and not by other policy makers. The Ministry of Youth and Sports was not citing or quoting these reports when publishing decisions on policy activities, its annual programmes or its own projects until 2020. However, the reports have been used by the Ministry of Youth and Sports when planning new initiatives targeting young NEETs in 2020.
The culture of monitoring and evaluation public policies is rather week in Romania. As a result, among the different policy fields relevant for the young people, evaluations are only common for the European funded programmes financially supporting a policy or public project and, in this case, they are used for the programming of European Operational Programmes, rather than for the design of national policies.
All evaluations carried out in the field of youth are commissioned research papers providing empirical evidence to the decision makers. Consultation of young people targeted by policies and programme is carried out to ensure empirical data. The EU youth dialogue is an important process for the consultation of young people and the results are taken into account in planning public projects by Government bodies at central/national level.