Description of the project:
The Visegrad Youth Forum (VYF) is one of the flagship projects of the Euro-Atlantic Center, an independent, non-partisan, non-governmental student organization specializing in the field of international relations and security policy. The project’s latest edition, VYF 2016, was organised with the support of the City of Banská Bystrica, the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic, the NATO Public Diplomacy Division and the Faculty of Political Science and International Relations at the University of Matej Bel in Banská Bystrica.
VYF 2016 consisted of three phases. The First phase started approximately one month before the conference, when participants from V4 countries and Ukraine actively prepared themselves via online e-learning. This form of interaction helped them to prepare for the conference by studying topic-related materials and familiarising with the topics of the event. Participants also discussed current issues and topics regarding V4 cooperation. In addition, thanks to an online group on social media, they had the chance to communicate and get to know each other before the conference started.
The actual forum was the second phase of the VYF 2016 project. The three-day-long event consisted of a field trip, two panel discussions, several workshops and a simulation of a NATO and Ukraine Summit. Moreover, the formal programme was enriched with informal and cultural activities, like the aforementioned field trip, as well as the event’s official welcoming reception.
The final phase of the project consists of establishing a stable and long-lasting V4+Ukraine community consisting of young leaders. This community serves as a platform for their further communication and cooperation, and is expanding every year with new participants taking part in the Visegrad Youth Forum project. During the five year of the existence of the VYF, more than 200 young people from Central Europe took part in this project.