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

Youth Policy Group

Martina Vitezova comes from Serbia where she is working in the board of Directors of YMCA Serbia. Her main tasks there are to advise on long term strategy and raised awareness of youth issues among government officials and civil societies members. She is truly concerned by challenges which affect youth especially ones related to education and employment. In February 2016 for instance, she represented YMCA World at the ECOSOC Youth forum. That was the opportunity to discuss the issue of youth unemployment in Europe with representatives of UN agencies. She is looking forwards to start her mission with YPG, a platform where she could contribute to help YMCA advocacy thanks to her many proposals to improve youth education and employment quality.

Elisa Vas is currently working as Expert / Project Coordinator within Studies and Analyses Unit, in the prestigious European Institute of Romania. She is also working as Communication and Public Relations Assistant within Young Initiative Association, an organization member of YMCA Romania Federation.. Among other, she studied International Relations, Political and Communication Science at the University of Oradea (Romania). Her several work experiences in communication, pedagogy and social field allowed her to sharpen her communication and conflict management skills.

For two year, Eglantina Lula have been the Executive Director of YMCA Tirana, Albania. She has more than 10 years of experiences in management area, mostly on managerial drafting project proposals and fund raising in NGOs. Moreover, she also has several experiences as a social worker. For instance, she was moderator within Albanian World's Children-Human Rights Association where she offered psycho-social counseling. And presently, she provides training and coaching for employment to the former Albanian women and girl victims of trafficking. She would like to carry on her career into humanitarian domain to build on and develop her managerial skills and enhance people's lives.

Here is Janette Van Kalkeren from The Netherlands. She is employed as marketing coordinator ELT (English language teaching) for an international publisher; she is also part of the international committee of YMCA of The Netherlands as a volunteer. She has worked with YMCA of The Netherlands for many years. Alongside this organization, she took part to several summer camps as a team member. She helped to improve internal and external communication, social media and the implementation of several new websites too. For a time, she worked as a communication employee for the NGO Youth for Christ. She has already worked in policy making regarding general youth policies for the political movement ChristenUnie - jongeren.

Lea Suzanne Wisseler is from Germany where she is doing her Master's degree in Peace and Conflict studies and Middle Eastern Studies international (B.A.) with major Politics at the Philipps University of Marburg. She loves traveling to discover other countries and religions. She visited many countries in Europe but also beyond. Hereby, she stayed a year in Israel and studied for a few months in Jordan. Through those travels, she has seen a lot of human right violations and she realized how challenging peacebuilding can be. However, she is motivated to contribute to solve this issue and to promote intercultural and interreligious dialogue. She is involved in the YMCA movement since an early age and she is looking forward to taking part on a European public debate level and to establishing a more coherent policy message alongside YMCA Europe.

Gerald Chifamba is the Project Coordinator of Coventry and Warwickshire YMCA in UK. He is strongly involved in YMCA organisation in many ways. He helps the NGO as a volunteer in World YMCA Resource Group on Health and in YMCA England Health and Wellbeing Committee. He is part of YES group YMCA Europe as a policy and advocacy Officer too. Thanks to his different affiliations he will be able to make sure that work in these YMCA groups is coherent and allow coordination between the groups to enhance the advocacy impact of YMCA. He is especially motivated to advocate to foster health provision, increased participation in sports and outdoor activity for young people across Europe.

Phillippa Lewis is from UK too. Currently, she is working within YMCA England as Policy and Research Officer and previously as Policy Support Officer. A part of her mission consists to respond to Government consultations on behalf of the YMCA Federation. She also undertakes some research, for instance one which was focused on young people's experiences with stigma surrounding mental health difficulties. She has worked for years in the NGO sector especially