Over 150 Caritas leaders and young volunteers from across Europe will gather in Tbilisi next week for a 3-day conference to discuss and develop ways to empower youth.
Caritas organisations from 39 European countries will come together at the network’s annual Regional Conference (main statutory decision making assembly) on 7-9 May 2018. This year the conference takes place in Tbilisi, under the auspices of Caritas Georgia. Each organisation will participate with a delegation consisting of directors, secretaries general or presidents and young volunteers. Representatives from the global Caritas federation will also be present. The participants’ experiences and testimonies will contribute to developing youth participation in the Caritas Europa network, the Catholic Church and society at large.
“Caritas is a large family with an extremely strong message. Together with our colleagues and volunteers we can set an example and make a difference for the most vulnerable and poor. In this work, we must also give young people the opportunity to express their solidarity and to empower them to become active participants in their societies,” says Paul Galles, coordinator of the solidarity volunteers at Young Caritas Luxembourg and one of the facilitators of the Young Caritas in Europe network.
Within Caritas, many young people already volunteer as they wish to commit and to help people in need in their communities. Through their actions, they demand for social justice and equal opportunities for everyone. They want to set an example and help create a better future for all.
“We are the pupils, the young are the teachers. Young Caritas is important for the whole network; we have to support the engagement of young people throughout Europe. Young Caritas will shape the image of Caritas in the Church and society, in this changing Europe of today and tomorrow,” says Msgr. Luc Van Looy, President of Caritas Europa and Bishop of Ghent.
Caritas Europa promotes the participation of young people so that they can become actively involved in shaping actions that affect them directly. By empowering young people today, we ensure a fair, inclusive and social Europe tomorrow.