Youth and Environment Europe (YEE) is a platform of many European youth organisations that study nature or are active in environmental protection. These member organisations come together from 26 countries. The aim of YEE is to encourage youth to be involved in environmental protection and to provide a platform where these organisations can work together.
YEE gives an opportunity to contact other European organisations, to exchange experiences and ideas and to work together.
All our activities are organised and carried out by young people under 30. YEE organises and encourages all activities that can increase the knowledge, understanding and appreciation of nature and the awareness of environmental problems among young people in Europe. Its aim is to promote the commitment of youth to the principles of environmental conservation. Therefore, young people's voluntary actions have to be stimulated for the protection and the rational use of the Earth's resources. Since environmental problems do not accept any borders, we act together within YEE in order to implement our ideas in our local groups and in joint activities. Within international actions, we intend to raise public awareness and to put pressure on enterprises and politicians.
YEE's European activities fall into two main areas:
Youth and Environment Europe is member organisation of:
YEE was founded as the European regional branch of the International Youth Federation for Environmental Studies and Conservation (IYF) on the 3rd of August 1983 in Stockholm. The first office of the federation was based in Copenhagen.
The origins of the organisation lay in the year 1948 when IUCN was funded by United Nations. This event made possible founding many organisations from which later YEE was constituted. The reasons of creation of YEE were connected with the problem of the international organisations that couldn't reach all the areas in the world where they wanted to be represented. That is why a need for local activities appeared and as the result there was the necessity to divide the world in 5 regions.
YEE was established by IYF with the cooperation of 15 organisations. Four fouder organisations are still members of YEE: Faltbiologerna (Sweden), Liga Ochrony Przyrody (Poland), DJN (Germany), JNM (Belgium).
In 1986, as a consequence of work of research group on the forest new organisation was born from YEE - European Youth Forest Action (EYFA) that is still active.
In 1990, YEE office was moved to Utrecht in the Netherlands to locate it more centrally to the member organisations being united in the federation that time.
In 1991, as a further subgroup from EYFA, the A SEED started to work as separate netwiork so YEE started to have grandchildren.
The fourth cooperation was cooperation among YEE, A SEED, YDC and EYFA some of the results obtained were: World Bank campaign (A SEED, YDC, YEE), Climate Change (A SEED, EYFA, YDC, YEE) Magazine the Verge (YEE and EYFA), grant applications.
For some years in the 90s there was a second office of YEE hosted by the member organisation from Malta in order to deal with the Mediterranean issues closely.
In 1998, the third change of the location of the office occurred. This time for the residence of YEE's office a medieval stronghold Toulcuv Dvur based in Prague was chosen. The ecological center establised there joins together a range of ecological, educational and cultural activities. The area includes eight hectares of land including wetlands around a little stream. YEE office is still located there nowdays.
In 2001, there was a dispute among the board and it was problematic to organise the AM. There were financial problems and it was hard to rule the organisation. The secretary general left the organisation, not being able to solve the situation.
After that critical year many new improvements were done in the organisation. Every year more and more organisations attend Annual Meeting, the budget is growning, more projects are run and more participants attend them. In 2009 we had 49 member organisations from 28 countries.
In 2003, new changes happened in the office - YEE started to host EVS volunteers who help as members of the office team in daily work of the organisation.
In 2008, another worker (part time) started to work in the office and in 2009 one more coordinator joined the office team.