What is the YES?
The YES is a yearly event hosted by Youth For Understanding.
Usually taking place in Werbellinsee, Germany, the YES has been happening online since 2020 due to the pandemic situation. This new reality allowed the event to become global and therefore, truly empower students from all over the world. Every year this unique event gathers more than 100 volunteers and 500 students who get the chance to learn about international topics of interest, but also to talk about their exchange experience with the volunteers and the other students.
YES 2022 Theme – Claim Your Digital Space
There are 4.88 billion active internet users, making up nearly 62% of the world’s population. We learn online, meet new people, maintain relationships, entertain ourselves, and access information—all with a few clicks. But these opportunities also bring significant challenges and concerns.
It’s now widely recognized that social media has a negative impact on the wellbeing and mental health of young people. Information, while more accessible than ever, needs to be constantly verified and fact-checked, given the flood of fake news, alternative facts, and conspiracy theories spreading online. Social interactions are fundamentally changing, and many are finding it challenging to navigate between their online and offline lives. At the same time, large corporations are steadily embracing the practices of “surveillance capitalism,” selling our personal data for profit.
It is up to us to figure out how to make the internet friendlier, safer, and more inclusive. There are a few questions we could try to answer:
- How can you protect your privacy when every platform or app demands access to your personal data?
- How do you shape informed opinions and arguments when the media is full of unverified content?
- How can the internet be used to foster 21st century skills such as adaptability, cross-cultural communication, critical thinking, and emotional intelligence?
- How can you use your own exchange experiences to influence your immediate environment, inspire civil society, and create positive change?
At the YES 2022, we will address these and many more questions, as we look at the different aspects of making the digital space yours. And for the first time since 2019, we’ll be returning to the familiar environment of Werbellinsee, Germany, for the event.
YES 2022 Core Team
Photos from previous years
We’re proudly sponsored by great organisations who believe the work we do matters.