WYA Symposium and Cocktail
Monday 8th May, Schwarzenbergplatz, Vienna
This exclusive event was generously hosted in a beautiful venue thanks to the help of a newly formed Austrian âsupporting committeeâ of the World Youth Alliance. The first section included impressive speeches by Prof. Ferdinand Kinsky and Sylvia Rotter on the importance of youth in shaping European policy and culture. WYA President Anna Halpine and European Director Emilia Klepacka subsequently presented the organisationâs achievements, vision and practical engagement; it was an opportunity for students and individuals from the older generation who are interested in WYA to come together and deepen their understanding of our work and grounding ideas. The WYA Europe team traveled from all over Europe in order to be available to share their experiences and to speak about current projects. Colorful presentation displays and training materials were prepared for display and guests shared their thoughts and enthusiasm over the course of the cocktail. The European staff were particularly grateful to the Viennese committee for organizing the event and to all the young people who showed such interest in taking up commitments within WYA.
A testimony from an Austrian Committee Member of the World Youth Alliance:
Austria’s history of totalitarianism has taught people to be very sceptical of anything that is radical. Very few people in the general public are politically engaged, and many, especially the youth, dare to really take sides. The member training and symposium in Vienna have shown that truth is contagious – many members traveled for up to 18 hours to participate in the meeting, and the exchange of ideas was very fruitful and inspiring. The reaction of the public at the symposium was also unusually open and positive – I received a message from the friend the next day who said that he had never been convinced of an idea so quickly. This is what happens when an idea radical in the good sense of the word – when it touches upon the very core of our human identity, and explores the one important question: What is the human person?