News — August 31, 2016

2016 JCI European Conference Delegates Network for Peaceful Solutions

Nearly 1800 delegates gathered in Tampere, Finland, June 15–18 to invest in peaceful solutions for the development of our world. 


The 2016 JCI European Conference started with the JCI National Presidents meeting, where the European National Presidents reported on projects being conducted and change being made in their communities. The First Timers Orientation also took place, bringing together nearly 200 young active citizens. Following a busy first day, the Opening Ceremony kicked off the first evening with a performance by the Pirkanpojat Boys Choir, performing the Finlandia Hymm. The Mayor of Tampere, Anna-Kaisa Ikonen, who is also a member of JCI Tammerkoski, gave a speech on youth engagement in the community and how JCI plays a relevant role in the development of our world. A highlight of the Opening Ceremony was the recognition of two JCI Finland Senators who were present, Co-Founder of JCI Finland and JCI Senator, Pekka Haarla and JCI Senator Paavo V. Suiminen. 


The following day kicked off with the JCI Morning Show, where hosts 2016 JCI Vice President Kasper Ilves and 2016 JCI Strategic Planning Review Committee Chairperson Lisan Beentjes performed an unforgettable and engaging dance to motivate and excite delegates. To highlight the necessity of the Peace is Possible campaign in Europe, guest speaker, past JCI member and Initiator at Project WeDo, Erin Bouwen presented her work with refugees in Europe and reinstated the need for individuals to believe in the purpose and take action for peace. Following the energetic Morning Show, delegates attended the Global Goals Session where UNDP Advisor Maria Faré Garcia and Head of Partnerships for the Let’s Do It! Foundation Kadi Kenk spoke on the the importance of establishing a Global Goals committee in order to create projects reflecting the goals most important to attending delegates home communities. The session attendees worked in groups choosing one goal to focus on and presented their analysis with the other attendees. The session inspired delegates to get creative, identify root causes and create impactful projects. 


On day three of the conference, the Regional Partnership Summit took place where delegates heard from experts representing all sectors of society about how they can combine knowledge, resources and skills to enable local communities to achieve sustainable impact. Speakers included Co-Founder and COO of Agendum Alekski Pulkkanen, CEO and Founder of Taplause Mirko Lännenpää and Policy Advisor for the UNDP Maria Faré Garcia. Immediately following the summit, more than 150 delegates took part in the European Economic Expert Forum where a number of keynote speakers discussed topics ranging from innovation and leadership to digitalization and education. Speakers included CEO of Finland Chamber of Commerce Risto E.J. Penttilä, Founder of Hintsa Performance Dr. Aki Hintsa and Former U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Finland Bruce Oreck. 


The final day of the conference hosted a very successful National Secretary General Session as well as the EDC Growth Hacking and Best Practices Sharing session that worked to help delegates find new and creative ways to grow as an organization. On the final evening of the conference, delegates attended the largest production of the conference—the JCI Farewell Ball. Delegates were greeted with a champagne toast sponsored by G.H. Mumm. Following the toast there were exciting performances and the traditional passing of the conference key to next year’s conference host.


Delegates left Tampere feeling motivated and ready to begin taking action and creating peace in their communities. 


See you next year at the 2017 JCI European Conference in Basel, Switzerland, May 24 – 27! Also, congratulations to JCI Latvia for their winning bid to host the 2018 JCI European Conference in Riga! 


For those that attended the 2016 JCI European Conference, share your favorite memories on the JCI Facebook and Twitter page

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