On 22 April 2013, the Council of the European Union adopted a Recommendation on establishing a Youth Guarantee. The Youth Guarantee is a new approach for combating youth unemploiyment which ensures that all young people under the age of 25 – whether registered in the employment services or not – receive a good quality offer within a period of four months of leaving formal education or becoming unemployed. The offer is to be one of employment, apprenticeship, traineeship or getting back into education and has to be tailored to the needs and individual characteristics and abilities of every young person. The recommendation actually contains three messages – every young person under the age of 25 has a right of “access” to the Guarantee; the offers for work or education must be of good quality and, third, a period of four months has been set for making the offer.
The Youth Guarantee targets young people who:
- are neither in employment, education or training,
- have dropped out of education or have completed a level of education and have not continued their education or training,
- are non-active persons, including discouraged or unemployed persons.
The new aspect that the Recommendation on Establishing a Youth Guarantee has added to the national policy is the need of having structural reforms and long-term efforts and investment undertaken among the institutions and organisations implementing the youth policies. Furthermore, the Youth Guarantee is not just individual assistance in the form of opportunities for inclusion in initiatives, programmes and measures for education and employment within the national policies targeting young people. It is also a commitment by all Member States.
Bulgaria joined the implementation of the European Youth Guarantee in early 2014 by starting to deliver on the National Youth Guarantee Implementation Plan 2014 – 2020. (NYGIP). The Bulgarian Plan reflects all key efforts for achieving results in the work with young people – it contains measures and initiatives to activate and outreach young people as well as for their successful employability.