WILLEMSTAD - A new generation of more than 420 Europe Direct centers across the European Union (EU) begins operations this month. These centers will bring information about the EU, its policies and European values to all corners of Europe for the next five years. These centers are an important link between the EU institutions and European citizens. For example, they help explain how Europe is fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, driving economic recovery through the NextGenerationEU program and how the green and digital transitions are being tackled.
Europe Direct in the Kingdom
The first nine centers in the Kingdom of the Netherlands will also start this month: 8 in the Netherlands and 1 in Curaçao. For the first time there will also be a Europe Direct in the Caribbean part of the Kingdom. Citizens, educational institutions, companies and organizations on Curaçao can go there for information about the EU, the possibilities the Union offers and the added value of EU citizenship for them.
Didier Herbert, Head of the Representation of the European Commission in the Netherlands: “We are pleased to welcome a new, enthusiastic group of Europe Direct centers. Together with these centers, we can provide citizens near them with information about the EU so that they can participate actively in the democratic process. Indeed, the events and interactive platform of the Conference on the Future of Europe provide them with an excellent opportunity to express and share ideas and expectations about the future of Europe.”
The role of the centers
Compared to the previous generations of Europe Direct centers, the role of the new centers has been modernized. The new generation will:
1.Involve people in events, citizens' dialogues, and various forms of offline and online interaction, with a special focus on the Conference on the Future of Europe;
2. provide local media with information on EU policies and priorities and involve them in the activities;
3. help the Commission to gain an overview of the local context of EU policies;
4. promoting active European citizenship in schools;
5. Promote coordination with other EU networks present in the regions, so that citizens, organizations and businesses have easier access to the information they need.
In this way, the centers will contribute to creating a European public space and raise awareness of the Union's priorities, opportunities and challenges.
Interested parties can register for free for the official digital event of Europe Direct Curacao by emailing email@example.com.