Friday, 10 November 2023
The AER Summer Academy 2022 initiative, which was hosted by Donegal County Council and Údarás na Gaeltachta in September 2022, has received the prestigious ‘European Citizens’ Prize’ for 2023 in Brussels.
Awarded every year by the European Parliament, the European Citizens’ Prize goes to projects “organised by people or organisations that encourage mutual understanding and closer integration between people in the EU, cross-border cooperation that builds a stronger European spirit, and EU values and fundamental rights.”. This award is significant as it highlights the importance of both the cross-border connections and those with the wider European Union that Donegal continues to develop and nurture.
The 2022 AER Summer Academy, which was organised by the Assembly of European Regions (AER), was hosted in Ireland for the first time ever and welcomed over 150 delegates from 19 regions across Europe attend a range of events in the Atlantic Technological University (ATU) Letterkenny, and the gteic@Gaoth Dobhair enterprise hub.
As part of the European Year of Youth, the theme of 2022 Summer Academy was “A Europe for the Next Generation/Eoraip don Chéad Ghlúin Eile”. The AER Summer academy encouraged and empowered the young delegates to collaborate, discuss and debate important topics such as entrepreneurship, bioeconomy, the future of skills, regional politics and more, in order to shape positive solutions to the major challenges which face future generations.
Leas Cathaoirleach of Donegal County Council, Cllr. Gerry Mc Monagle, attended the awards ceremony in Brussels stated that “On behalf of Donegal County Council, I would like to congratulate the Assembly of European Regions, Summer Academy Organising Committee, our co-hosts Udarás na Gaeltachta and my colleagues in Donegal County Council on this prestigious European Citizens’ Prize award which showcased how Ireland’s DNA is prevalent across Donegal through the diligent work and creativity of our young people in transforming Europe for the better for future generations.