Focus groups in Croatia were conducted in two meetings with 16 young participants
interested in the topics of youth involvement in EU projects and programs and the
opportunities that the EU offers to young people. Both focus groups were based on the
results of the research we conducted among young people from Lithuania, Portugal, Italy
and Croatia, and it related to the knowledge of young people about the European Parliament
and the possibilities of involvement in political processes.
In both focus groups, young people were quite engaged and had diverse thoughts about the interest of young people and the information of young people. What contributes to such results is the lack of interest
of young people in engagement at the European level, which stems from the attitude that they cannot contribute with their role at the European level. Furthermore, vast majority of participants agreed with the results that point out that young people distrust political institutions and due to that don’t take active role in politics and decision making processes.
The participants stated that young people feel that they cannot contribute to any change
with their voice, from which comes the feeling of helplessness and rejection of collective
responsibility, but that it is important that young people are co-creators in events that
promote European values and importance. As soon as young people have invested time,
knowledge and opinion, they will be more involved in EU youth policies. Better promotion of
mobility and similar EU projects is needed and the youth should learn about it from the
youth. Another important conclusion is that Civic education should be part of the
educational curriculum, and political education to be carried out in high school for all 3 or 4
years in Croatian education system. The participants had a basis on which they could
comment on the results and give opinions, the discussion was constructive, and the transfer
of experiences was at a good level.