During the next FYEG General Assembly in Prague the delegates will also decide who are going to be the next spokespersons. As there there are always two spokes there need to be at least two candidates of different genders. This year we have the following candidates:
For EC Treasurer:
- Jean-Michel Muhire
For EC Members:
- Adrià Belenguer
- Anastasiya Kastushkina
- Fabian Wagner
- Johannes Butscher
- Maria Kola
- Paula Espinoza
- Sam Murray
The Ecosprinter would like to provide you with more information about them than you can read in their official CVs and motivation letters. By doing so we hope to make the decision who to vote for during upcoming GA easier and give the candidates more space for introduction.
We asked the candidates the same set of questions, so that you can compare them better. Here are the answers of EC Treasurer Candidate Jean-Michel Muhire and EC Member Candidates Adrià Belenguer and Anastasiya Kastushkina:
What was your first experience related to the Green movement and why have you decided to get involved?
Jean-Michel: During the summer 2008 I was in the Sahel Desert planting threes to help fighting against the desertification of the region with a Belgian Ngo called DBA.I realised that climate change was not only the matter of people suffering from it but a global and systemic problem .Since then I started to be more involved in the green movement through OXFAM Belgium ,the sustainable development committee of Mons University and of course EcoloJ (French speaking young greens).
Adrià: Somehow, my first experience related with the Green movement was in 2011 when I was participating in the 15M in Barcelona and I felt the need to participate in a political movement. And as my political vision was environmentalist and socialist, I joined the Catalan Young Greens because they were the organization with which I shared more values and objectives.
Anastasiya: When I moved to Germany in 2015 I found myself in an environment I had never experienced before. And I am speaking now not about nature conditions but about the strong Green movement created there. And I was so deeply impressed that I decided to attend the local organization – Grüne Jugend Erfurt. After that I got a lot of knowledge about green principles, participated in a large range of different events and actions. Then I found the directions most interesting for me in the Green movement – human rights, especially for diversity and information access.
Why did you decide to apply for the position as an Executive Committee member?
Jean-Michel: First of all I experienced the same position in Ecoloj chapter ,then I get more involved at a federal level. In the same time I attended more FYEG events and I learned so much from discussions I had with other European young greens.It helped me to construct a wider vision of green activism.Living in Brussels gives me the opportunity to serve closely this organisation .
Adrià: After having participated in the last two FYEG General Assemblies as JEV delegate and as prep-team in the AlterCOP22 seminar last November in Paris, I decided to apply for the Executive Committee because I believe that I am ready to take up the challenge of being part of FYEG. I know quite well the organization and it will be a good way to strengthen FYEG in South Europe.
In addition, personally I took this decision for increasing my knowledge of European politics and to work together with other activist from around Europe.
Anastasiya: I have found that there is no EC member coming from Eastern Europe this year. That’s why I want to represent this region and bring present political agenda based on topics and problematic of Eastern Europe including such countries as Belarus, the Ukraine and Russia.
Could you choose one feature of your character that makes you a perfect candidate for a member of the Executive Committee? Why this one?
Jean-Michel: Sociable because a treasurer is not only someone who is making financial reports but also someone who a) needs to build new relationship ,for the fund-raising part of this position, b) is open to any remark coming from the general secretary for the HR part of this position and c) has to work closely with all the elements composing FYEG: EC, SG, MO.
Adrià: Difficult question and difficult answer. Just to summarize, I would say that I am a collaborative and open-minded person. I chose this one because to work in a diverse organization it is really important to be able to understand others points of view and be ready to face the upcoming challenges in a collaborative way, always understanding the other as a peer.
Anastasiya: I have a great experience in European network organizations gained on my previous and contemporary activities, including work in international scholar and political foundations, the biggest educational website in Belarus adukacyja.info, international student organization GFPS e. V., UNESCO and both German and European Green parties. I think my knowledge will move forward FYEG and help in installing sustainable connection with European Greens.
What was your biggest challenge as an activist and how did you manage to overcome it (if you ever did)?
Jean-Michel: My biggest challenge as an activist was to introduce Sociocracy to my formal student association in which people where use to vertical and pure hierarchical decision.It was a long process which lead us to finalize two projects.Now with the new committee it still running and I hope it won’t fell down.
Anastasiya: My biggest challenge was and is the difficulties in choosing only one thing (idea, time-spending project) out of a pack of possibilities. I understand that in order to achieve something really great in a sphere you work in you should devote a lot of time and affords to it. But it is always hard for me to decide, which activities I should take aside, as I want to be a multi-dimensional human. Moreover I want to experience a lot of fields, to which now an access. That’s why it always requires a certain amount of bravery for me to make a choice.
What was your biggest success as an activist and what was the reason why you managed to achieve it?
Jean-Michel: One of the biggest success I experienced as a future web/open-source activist was in July 2012 when the European parliament rejected the Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement.As the right for online privacy is for me fundamental,I wanted to stand up for it (not as much as I can do nowadays, but It was worth it).
Adrià: Successes never are particular they always are collectives. I have support all the initiatives that I have ever could, as for example the Catalan campaign against TTIP. But its results, as other fights results, always are collective achievements.
Anastasiya: For the previous two years I have been devoting a lot of my time to developing educational programs in Belarus. And I always feel extremely happy, when a person finds HIS or HER best opportunity to study grateful to me. Then I realize that my activities are not in vain.
How do you imagine working with other Executive Committee members?
Jean-Michel: Even if I only know 5 of the EC candidates I am really looking forward to work with the new committee.I am always enthusiastic to discover new members , we have so much to learn from each other trough meeting discussion or casual talk .
Adrià: It should be amazing to work with motivated and green people from around Europe. I imagine that we will work a lot by skype and a good communication would be the most important thing to achieve our challenges.
Anastasiya: Well, to tell the truth I have not yet got the opportunity to know the candidates for this year’s EC. However I consider myself a communicative and positive person that could easy get in touch with different people. So I am looking forward to meeting interesting personalities with whom I will share my interest in the Green movement and with whose creativity we will develop cool actions and events!
What type of responsibilities would you like to carry out if you get elected?
Adrià: I would like to work preparing projects, organizing events and strengthening the relations with the Member Organizations.
Anastasiya: I would like to establish and coordinate the dialogue between FYEG and Eastern Europe. Also I want to take part in the creation of ecosprinter, where my experience as an editor of adukacyja.info could be implemented. But I am also completely open to other projects and responsibilities, especially those connected with marketing, education and information.
What would be your biggest contributions to the organization as an EC member?
Adrià: My biggest contributions would be my will to create campaigns and to spread our messages as well as to work on the elaboration of projects and the organization of events.
Anastasiya: First, rise of attention to the countries of Eastern Europe and the region as a whole. Second, fruitful dialogue established between FYEG and the Green organizations of Eastern Europe. Third, promotional plan developed for the Green movement. Fourth, a range of events about human rights and information secure.
The Ecosprinter Reviews FYEG Spokesperson Candidates: https://www.ecosprinter.eu/blog/ecosprinter-spokespersons-candidates-review/
The Ecosprinter Reviews FYEG Executive Committee Member Candidates (Part 1): https://www.ecosprinter.eu/blog/the-ecosprinter-reviews-fyeg-executive-committee-member-candidates-part-1/
The Ecosprinter Reviews FYEG Executive Committee Member Candidates (Part 2): https://www.ecosprinter.eu/blog/the-ecosprinter-reviews-fyeg-executive-committee-member-candidates-part-2/
To find out more go to http://fyeg.org/GA16
Ecosprinter Editorial Board