“Not just another online webinar” – Impressions of the EU Academy

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I attended the ‘Bursting the Brussels bubble’ online edition of the EUAcademy in April & May 2021. As a young graduate interning at an environmental NGO that focuses primarily on bringing awareness and mobilising the public, the EUAcademy immediately sparked my interest.

In my work at NOAH, the Danish member of Friends of the Earth, it had already become clear that some of us could use some help in polishing our EU influencing skills. An interactive training on EU decision-making and influencing for the public interest was music to my ears.

As a newbie to advocacy, I was hoping the training would provide me with a clear understanding of how things work in practice: which buttons to push, where and when, to have the most impact possible. I now understand the key actors to target in the different institution, how to navigate the EU legislative tube map and that timing is key.

Despite the online format, I had the opportunity to network with fellow participants during speed dating sessions. Meeting these inspiring people gave me renewed hope because so many are involved in the fight for a world where the pursuit of the interest of a few will no longer harm society.

Marc-Olivier, Joost and Isabella, our facilitators, did a great job ensuring everyone could keep up with the fast pace of the training regardless of differences in expertise and experience. The materials provided made the content accessible for all participants.

The simulation of an EU decision-making process was completely new to me. It was intense from time to time. The challenging exercises allowed me to build self-confidence to delve deeper into the matter. I have already started to use the EUChanger Advocacy Toolbox in my work for NOAH!

 

Julie Beausaert (NOAH/Friends of the Earth Denmark) 

April & May 2021 edition of the EU Academy