Partial agreement on Youth mobility through the Youth Card
The Partial Agreement on Youth Mobility through the Youth Card was set up in 1991 at the initiative of the then Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Catherine Lalumière, following the Council of Europe Conference of Ministers responsible for Youth held in Lisbon (Portugal). At this Conference, the ministers advocated an increase in mobility of young people between the East and the West.
The Committee of Ministers' Resolution ResAP(1991) revised in 2003 (Resolution ResAP(2003)1) institutes a Partial Agreement on the Youth Card for the purpose of promoting and facilitating youth mobility in Europe. The Partial Agreement is part of the Youth Department of the Council of Europe and thus follows the priorities and objectives of both the youth sector and the Council of Europe as a whole.
Aims of the partial agreement
The overall objective of the Partial Agreement is for member governments and EYCA member organisations to work together to create better mobility solutions for young people. This general objective implies two main aims:
1. Development of the Youth Card scheme
The Statute of the Partial Agreement states:
“The Partial Agreement shall be aimed at developing the Youth Card scheme, particularly at European level in the best interests of young people […] with a view to facilitating their mobility as well as their access to the various goods and services necessary for their personal and cultural development.”
This is the first goal of the Partial Agreement.
Anyone under the age of 30 can become a youth cardholder, a young person does not need to be a student or a resident of a European country.
Youth cards provide young people – residents or travellers – with access to advice, discounts and benefits in the fields of mobility, accommodation, culture, language courses and services and products both on-line (by category, city or country) and off-line. Youth cards are issued by national youth card organisations.
2. Development of better youth policies with and for member governments
The second goal is to cater to the interests and needs of the member governments on youth mobility and youth card issues. The work programme is devised in such a way as to generate and mobilise knowledge on these issues, share best practices and thus offer better policy solutions (seminars, workshops, symposia, etc). These activities are followed by Best Practice Publications and recommendations for specific actions to member States and EYCA national member organisations.
A wide range of stakeholders is activated for that purpose: governments, European institutions, business community, experts, academics, youth NGOs, national youth card organisations as well as young cardholders themselves. Thus, member States both actively contribute to and benefit from the expertise of the Partial Agreement.
What is the procedure for joining the Partial Agreement?
For member States of the Council of Europe and States parties to the European Cultural Convention:
- These member States may join the Partial Agreement at any moment by simply making a declaration to this effect to the Secretary General. This consists in sending an official letter or a verbal note from the Minister of Foreign Affairs or from the Permanent Representative of the country to the Council of Europe addressed to the Secretary General of the Council of Europe.
For States outside the Council of Europe and not party to the European Cultural Convention:
- On a proposal by the European Youth Card Association and the Board of Co-ordination of the Partial Agreement, the Committee of Ministers may invite any non-member State of the Council of Europe to join the Partial Agreement, following consultation with any other non-member States already participating.
Partial agreement member States
Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Cyprus, Finland, Hungary, Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Montenegro, The Netherlands, Portugal, San Marino, Serbia, Slovenia, Slovakia and Switzerland.
More information on membership
- European seminar ''Developing better youth mobility for young people and for Europe" ; 27 February-1 March, Andorra.
- Seminar on “Employability and mobility for young people – youth cards’ contribution” ; 12 July 2013, Strasbourg, France.
- For more information on good practice examples shared during Partial Agreement seminars, please see the EYCA Good Practice Series Publications.
- European seminar – ‘Inclusive Mobility for Young People in Europe: Better Mobility Opportunities for Young People with Disabilities or from Disadvantaged Backgrounds’ 6-7 May, Vienna, Austria.
- European seminar ‘Inclusive Online Engagement for Young People in Europe: to Support Youth Mobility and Active Citizenship’ 11 November 2014, Strasbourg, France.
- Partial Agreement on Youth Mobility through the Youth Card - Final report 2015
- European Symposium - ‘Mobility in the Mind: Creating New Routes to Employment’ 17-20 March, Lisbon, Portugal.
- European Seminar – ‘The Role of European Youth Cards in Youth Work’ In the framework of the 2nd European Youth Work Convention, Belgian Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, 27 April, Brussels, Belgium.
- European Seminar - ‘The Role of European Youth Cards in Implementing Youth Policies’ 30 April, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK.
- World Forum on Intercultural Dialogue - WFID Conference, Shared Culture for Shared Security, 18-19 May, Baku, Azerbaijan.
- European Seminar on youth mobility and inclusion.
- European Seminar on evidence on youth mobility – launching the report on youth mobility commissioned through the Partial Agreement and exploring the creation of a youth mobility think tank as part of the Agreement.
- European Seminar on how the European Youth Card can help young people boost their employability through internship and scholarship schemes.
European Platform on Learning Mobility (EPLM)
The European Platform on Learning Mobility is one of the activities of the Partnership between the European Commission and the Council of Europe in the field of youth policy, youth research and youth work.
Its mission is to engage in the improvement, knowledge, visibility and recognition of learning mobility in the youth field, particularly in various forms of youth work.
A Steering Group guides the EPLM; the members of the Steering Group represent a wide variety of stakeholders, programmes and formats in the field of learning mobility, a balanced mixture of the respective fields of work and a regional diversity within Europe. The Steering Group consists of researchers, policy makers and practitioners. The Partial Agreement is part of this Steering Group.
Enlarged Partial Agreement on Cultural Routes
The Cultural Routes programme was launched by the Council of Europe in 1987. Its objective was to demonstrate, by means of a journey through space and time, how the heritage of the different countries and cultures of Europe contributes to a shared cultural heritage. The Cultural Routes put into practice the fundamental principles of the Council of Europe: human rights, cultural democracy, cultural diversity and identity, dialogue, mutual exchange and enrichment across boundaries and centuries.
European Youth Cards are made available on a number of cultural routes offering discounts along the way.
European Youth Card Association (EYCA)
The Partial Agreement’s work programme is implemented in co-operation with the European Youth Card Association, EYCA. It is a non-profit association founded in 1987. It represents 39 national youth card organisations across Europe with over 5 million cards in use. All EYCA members have committed to promoting, both individually and collectively, youth mobility, healthy lifestyle and active citizenship among young people.
Directorate of Democratic Citizenship and Participation
Unit of Intergovernmental Co-operation
Partial Agreement on Youth Mobility through the Youth Card
F – 67075 Strasbourg Cedex
Tel.: + 33 (0)3 88 41 29 98
Fax: +33 (0)3 88 41 27 77
European Youth Card Association
Centre Dansaert, Rue D’Alost 7-11
Tel.: +32 (0)288 06 843