Georgia’s millennials rely on themselves to change life for the better and are optimistic about Georgia’s future in the European family
The new generation of Georgia’s democracy
June 28, 2019
“I do see myself in politics in the future, although it’s a difficult path which requires a huge effort,” Nino Gegenava, 23, says.
Nino is among more than 200 students from 18 Georgian universities who took part in an educational programme rolled out by the Parliament of Georgia, the European Union and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in 2019 to raise awareness about parliamentary work and encourage citizens to take an active part in the legislative process.
Young people tested their knowledge about Georgia’s Parliament and parliaments of other countries and learned how to lead a democratic debate. They also had a chance to meet Georgian MPs and heads of parliamentary committees, attend parliamentary sittings and find out what a legislative body can do to support key national priorities of Georgia, such as European integration.
“Learning about the structure and rules of debate is a great experience,” Giorgi Tsarelashvili, 20, notes. “As a student, I am more focused on education at the moment, but I am excited about politics too and, in the future, would be interested to contribute to the development of my country as a Member of Parliament.”
Georgia’s millennials are a vibrant and diverse generation which has grown up during their country’s democratic transformation. They tend to rely on themselves to change life for the better. They are optimistic about Georgia’s future in the European family.
“European integration has multiple benefits for Georgia,” says Tamar Zoidze, 18. “It guarantees stability and peace and it’s also good for the economy and Georgian producers. If Georgia fulfils all requirements of the Association Agreement, we all will live in a more democratic, safer and stronger country.”
Georgia amended its constitution to shift to a fully parliamentary system of democracy in 2018. At the end of the year, the Parliament of Georgia adopted a new version of its guiding document, the Rules of Procedure, which spells out the roles and responsibilities of the country’s now most powerful democratic institution. The EU and UNDP have been supporting the Parliament throughout this challenging process, providing expertise and resources needed for the success of these critical reforms.
The information campaign for youth is part of this broad assistance which aims to enhance the role of parliament in all key areas of governance and to increase citizens' involvement in decision-making.
“Democracy is stronger if all voices in society are heard,” notes Louisa Vinton, UNDP Head in Georgia. “We’re confident that getting young people interested in parliamentary work will attract more talent and energy to the democratic process and give them a vehicle to realize their ambition to make the world a better place.”