The Model European Parliament program is a leadership program for youth in the 28 EU countries, set up in 1994 with a secretariat in The Hague, NL. The aim of the program is to educate young people at high school level about European integration and cooperation, and to develop their understanding of common issues as well as provide them with knowledge about EU’s institutions. The program develops political awareness and an understanding for Europe’s cultural diversity.
The MEP program has successfully expanded into regional organizations in several parts of Europe. In 2004, a regional organization was set up in the Baltic Sea Region by schools/institutions in Finland, Sweden, Lithuania and DK, and at present we have been joined by more in Estonia, Latvia, Kaliningrad, Russia, Poland, Germany, Iceland and Norway as well. The program is a training ground for future leaders and politicians as well as for talented students who share an interest in European issues.
The vision of the MEP Baltic Sea Organization is:- Build relationships between youth in the Baltic Sea Region
- – Penetrate common Baltic Sea and Nordic issues
- – Give insight into each individual’s potential to affect society’s development
- – Focus on trade, industry, politics and culture and social affairs
- – Give insight into modern democracy and the parliamentary system, using the European Parliament as an example
- – Develop debating skills in large international forums
The working language during the MEP is English. 10 students are chosen to represent each member country, and together they comprise a delegation. Each delegate represents his/her native country in a committee to discuss international issues. The common goal is to write a resolution that can be supported and defended in the General Assembly (the youth parliament).
The MEP program is also a cultural and social event, which gives the participants the opportunity to experience the diversity of the countries around the Baltic Sea and be part of numerous social events, such as teambuilding, sightseeing along with living with a family in the host country.
The sessions take place twice a year in the Baltic Sea Region. Look for the venues at the website.
Pedagogically the MEP program focuses on:
- a) Individual ICT introduction to EU institutions and to specific topics
- b) Study program before the sessions in class/groups
- c) Workshops/committee work run by experienced students and delegates
- d) Project work/written resolutions in English
- e) Debating and rhetoric skills
- f) Intercultural skills and competencies
- g) The experience of an advanced and realistic role play (as a learning method)
The MEP BSR office is located in Copenhagen, DK, and run by an Administrative Coordinator. More information about MEP BSR and sessions at the website.
Enclosed here please also find material and guidelines in preparation of the sessions at the national, regional and international levels. The downloads page offers a variety of resources and reports as well as videos from the sessions.
The MEP BSR was sponsored for a long time by
the Nordic Council of Ministers until it was well established. We are always on the look out for sponsors and often use the EU program Youth in Action for funding. We have a number of partners, e.g.The Baltic Development Forum, which was set up by one of our patrons Mr. Uffe Ellemann-Jensen Former Foreign Minister of DK.
and Nina Nørgaard, Adm. Coordinator/MEP BSR at the office.