Akdeniz University has been working in the field of youth work since 2007, when the first steps were taken towards founding a European-Mediterranean Youth Centre in the region. As a result of cooperation with the European Commission, the Council of Europe, and the Ministry of Youth and Sports, a decision was reached and conveyed to the Council of Higher Education which gave approval for the establishment of the EuroMed Youth Centre under the authority of Akdeniz University. The Education and Application Centre, which had been founded in Adrasan in 2009, was then converted to become the EuroMed Youth Centre, which launched its first official international activities in 2012. The first training course held was in conjunction with the MOSAIC group from the Council of Europe, and the SALTO-YOUTH Research Centre.
Following a visit by representatives of Akdeniz University to the CoE Youth Centres in Strasbourg and Budapest, an application for the CoE Quality Label for Youth Centres was submitted. While our application was being processed, the Centre hosted 86 different training courses with the participation of young people from Turkey and many other countries in Europe and the Mediterranean region, which contributed to the award of the CoE Quality Label for Youth Centres in 2012. All the activities carried out in the Centre are grounded in the values of respect for human rights, democracy and the rule of law, and are fully in accord with the criteria established by the Council of Europe Quality Label for Youth Centres.
The EuroMed Youth Centre, the first of its kind in Turkey, fills a role of great strategic importance in the field of youth work as a result of our close cooperation with the CoE, INJEP, the Turkish NA (National Agency), and the SALTO-YOUTH Resource Centres. We have also developed strong and enduring cooperation with the Turkish Ministry of Youth and Sports, as well as numerous NGOs responsible for aspects of youth work in Turkey. The general framework of this partnership is designed to empower the young people of our region by combining our efforts to achieve our goals, and through the contributions we can make to research in the field of the youth work.
The strategic aims of our centre are to contribute to improving the levels of social inclusion, personal development, active citizenship and employability of young people through an effective combination of formal and non-formal education methods, which we have developed as part of the activities of the Centre. Cooperating with Turkish Ministry of Youth and Sports, Turkish National Agency, NGOs, Universities, and youth clubs, The Centre has also made a valuable contribution to overall youth policy, and improvements to services within the youth sector by way of our ongoing research activities in the field of youth work.