On 23 May, LLLP joined forces with the European Association for the Education of Adults and with the European Training Foundation to pave the way for tighter cooperation when it comes to skills development and civil society. In an engaging event with partners and institutional representatives, the three organisations sought to promote policy dialogue and partnerships between governments and civil society organisations active in the skills development sector across EU Member States and ETF partners countries. The event took place under the Swedish Presidency of the Council of the European Union, and in the context of the European Year of Skills.
Kicking-off with a panel of Members of the European Parliament, of the EESC, of the Swedish Presidency of the Council of the EU and officials from the European Commission, this event was the perfect hub to start highlighting the contribution of civil society in the sector of education and training. Speakers and participants alike agreed that, while chronically underfunded, civil society remains a crucial contributor both to national skills strategy and to the overall development of national agendas. While different landscapes call for different solutions, as highlighted by the OECD keynote, the state of affairs of an inclusive policy dialogue in lifelong learning calls for the involvement of civil society organisations in all steps of lifelong learning policies, from design to implementation and review.
This was a very welcomed first step in a more structured cooperation between ETF and EU civil society organisations, with the aim to underline the latter’s contribution to European policies and their irreplaceable role in bridging policies and citizens.