„YMCA Europe is a working fellowship to strengthen movements where people grow in body, mind and spirit.“


11th January 2022

The YMCA Europe family is deeply shocked and filled with grief over the death today of Mr. David Sassoli, President of the European Parliament.

david sassoli

President Sassoli was an inspiring and committed leader who dedicated his life as a journalist and a politician to put in practice the most valuable principles of peace with justice and solidarity with the most vulnerable sectors in society.

Born in Italy (1956), he was always a champion of European unity and integration. In fact Sassoli was in Berlin during the historic event of the fall of the Berlin Wall on November 9th 1989.

As President of the European Parliament, David Sassoli received our YMCA Europe’s first Roots for Peace Award to an European institution in 2020 following a decision taken by our Executive Committee.

President Sassoli addressed a message at our June 26th 2020 General Assembly.

In his speech at our main governance event, President Sassoli highlighted the responsibility that we have “towards our young people, repaying them with a better future, giving them more opportunities and making sure that human and social rights are respected. We cannot backtrack in this and we have to be more ambitious. This is the reason why it is important that young people actively participate in political life, giving their contribution. But for this to happen, it is necessary that the rights of the new generations return to the centre of political action.”

These words resonate especially today as we remember President’s Sassoli’s passion for youth empowerment  and the key role that organisations like the YMCA shall play in providing spaces and development for young people.

On behalf of our Executive Committee, Staff Team and the YMCA movement across Europe, we express our most sincere condolences to the family of President Sassoli and his colleagues at the European institutions. His legacy and message will always remain as a living example for our movement. May God bless him.

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