New Bureau members elected during the 2011 EFAY GA in Åland Islands

Originally published on May 4, 2011.

The European Free Alliance Youth held its 2011 General Assembly in Aland Island on Saturday, April 16th.  36 delegates representing 25 different youth organizations took part in this exciting political meeting. The GA coincided with the political campaign for the Finnish national elections that took place on Sunday, April 17th. For the first time since its establishment as a political party in 2001, our member Aland Framtid (in English “the Future of Aland”) participated in the Finnish legislative elections. We are very happy with the fact that Aland Framtid’s candidate, 19 year old Axel Jonsson, is a member of EFA youth because we believe that young people can contribute significantly to the positive transformation of our societies. The EFAy GA was an excellent networking opportunity for our members as well as an open space for dialogue and discussion on how the organization should be structured in the future. The activity and financial reports for 2010 have been approved. The activity and financial plans for 2011 and 2012 have been discussed. EFAy is proud to have two new full member organizations (Mladi Moravané and PNC-Ghjuventù) and two observer organizations (Junge SPitzen and ALPE Youth). One of the most significant moments of the GA was the election of the new EFAy Bureau members. The new team will work in close cooperation with the Secretary General in order to encourage the active participation of all our members as they have a very important role to play in promoting the rights of minorities and stateless nations in Europe. The profiles of our new Bureau members are listed below.

Eva Paelinck - Bureau Member

“I am 24 years old and a member of the board of Young N-VA. My function there is external communication, so I will be responsible for, amongst other things, the communication with EFAy and will be attending as many conferences and events as possible. I am currently doing a Master in Management at the Catholic University in Leuven. I hold a BA in applied linguistics and another Master in multilingual communication in English and German.”

Luke James - Bureau Member

“I am current President-elect of my students’ union at Swansea University in Wales where I represent over 15,000 students with five other full-time officers. I have formally been President, Vice-President and Press Officer of Plaid Cymru’s youth wing. I am currently taking responsibility for EFAy’s media and I created the last version of our newsletter. I have previously worked for a local newspaper in Wales and have been news editor of my student paper. I believe in independence for all nations and green-socialism.”

Max Zañartu Plaza - Bureau Member

“I was born in Barcelona in 1991. I am studying Political Science at the Pompeu Fabra University. I became a member of JERC in 2006 in a moment of expansion of the organisation. The same year I became the secretary of activism and campaigns of my local committee until 2009, when I became the spokesman of the JERC - Gràcia. I started working in the international political commission of JERC in 2008, and in 2010 I became member of EFAY’s bureau as Arseni’s substitute. I also took part in the referendum for the independence of Catalonia in Barcelona. I believe that EFAy must be a referent for the youth of the minorities and stateless nations in Europe. If we don't fight for their rights, nobody will do it!”

Michael Dixon - Bureau Member

“I am currently the National Treasurer of the official youth-wing of the Scottish National Party, the YSI, and formerly served as National Convener.  I work for the deputy leader of the SNP, Nicola Sturgeon, in her capacity as a Member of the Scottish Parliament.  I also study Politics and History part-time at the University of Glasgow.”

David J. Gómez-Bellido - Bureau Member

“I am a 27 year old Andalusian from Seville, south of the Iberian Peninsula. I have a degree in business and labor law. My political party has 50 years of history, while its youth organization was established 30 years ago. I am very proud to be part of its history, which is also part of the 3000 years history of Andalusia. I will contribute to the EFAy with a spirit of learning and a search for daily improvement. I’m honest, sincere and hardworking, and I want to know the reality of other stateless nations.”

About the event

New bureau members elected at the 2011 GA in the Åland Islands.
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