Following successive enlargements, The European Union became the most important economy in the world, with a population of over 500 million people. EU’s enlargement policy supports applicant European countries in joining the Union. Therefore, this policy supports Europe’s transformation into a safer place and promotes democracy and fundamental freedoms, strengthening the rule of law for the countries aspiring to join the EU.

In this context, the European Commission launched a writing competition called “So similar. So different. So Europeans.” With this opportunity, young people from all over Europe were invited to express their opinions on one or both following questions about EU’s enlargement policy: What is young people’s experience of belonging to an enlarged European Union? How does an enlarged European Union face the challenges of the future?

Rogalski Damaschin Public Relations developed this project in Romania.

Raising awareness about the European Union, emphasizing the challenges of EU’s enlargement and getting at least 15 applications from Romania

The writing competition was held until 27 February and was open for young people aged 18 to 25, citizens of one of the 28 EU state members. The national jury would choose a winner that would be invited to Brussels for a three-day study visit. The winning article would be published by the European Commission and would be proposed for publication to various European publications. The three main components of the communication campaign were the involvement of the main actors in education, the promotion of the writing contest in national and local media, and the involvement of the European Commission Representation in Romania.

We managed to involve more than 10 public educational institutions and organizations, we generated more than 20 articles in the national and local media, and we secured the involvement of the European Commission Representation in Romania. The University of Bucharest, the National School of Political Science and Public Administration, and the National Association of Student Organizations in Romania were among the most important institutions and organizations involved in the project.

Developing pro-bono partnerships is always a challenge. In order to gain the support of the most prestigious universities and student organizations in Romania we created visuals related to the European Union – a good image vector for organizations, but also for those students aiming for a career in Brussels. The main educational actors were actively involved in this project, readily showing their interest.