About YEE

Guiding Principles


All of our board members, staff and volunteers are under the age of 35.


Our actions cater to the needs and interests of the youth, empowering them to be leaders and make a positive change in their communities.


We maintain complete autonomy to make unbiased decisions and act in the best interests of youth and the environment.


We are proud to represent the voice of the European youth, thanks to our extensive network of local and grassroots organizations throughout Europe.

Key pillars

Youth participation

YEE advocates for meaningful, systemic, and inclusive youth participation in environmental activities and initiatives. Young people have a stake in the future of the environment, and YEE prioritizes considering youth as a separate stakeholder in international climate negotiations.

Youth work

YEE activities aim to empower young people by providing them with skills, resources, and opportunities to participate actively and responsibly in society. Through workshops, volunteering experiences, and content creation, young people are supported to make positive life choices and become future leaders.


We strive to lead the way in youth-led advocacy engagement by urging for climate justice and tangible action within global and EU governance processes concerning various environmental issues. Our advocacy engagement is geared towards empowering young people to raise awareness and advocate for environmental issues. We provide them with an understanding of environmental justice and intersectionality principles and enable them to access and influence international negotiation processes.

Non-formal education

At YEE, non-formal education is a fundamental aspect of our work, and we strive to incorporate it into every educational framework. Our organisation is committed to hosting training sessions for trainers, in order to expand the reach of non-formal education among our members and young people alike.

Membership coordination

Our member organisations play an active role in guiding and shaping the direction of our organisation. We work closely with our members to submit joint proposals and projects that enhance collaboration and create valuable opportunities for our membership. Furthermore, we provide our network with international representation opportunities to ensure they have a voice on the global stage.


We recognizes the interconnectedness of environmental issues and various forms of social inequality and discrimination, including race, gender, and class. By emphasizing the complex and overlapping nature of these inequalities, it highlights the necessity of addressing them simultaneously when working toward environmental sustainability and justice. Our work prioritizes climate justice, and as such, we apply intersectionality as a methodology throughout all aspects of our projects.

General Assembly

The General Assembly is the highest decision-making body of YEE. It consists of the member organisations, whose representatives meet at least once per year in an annual meeting.


The executive board consists of 6 board members, who are elected from and by YEE's member organisations for a year-long mandate.

The board is led by the chairperson.


The secretariat consists of paid staff who ensure that all YEE activities and projects are efficiently organised and carried out.

The secretariat is led by the secretary-general, appointed by the executive board.

Advocacy Working Group

The Advocacy Working Group is a volunteering program designed to empower young leaders across Europe through a 12-month training process, where the selected individuals develop transversal skills by working on a designated environmental portfolio.

Regional Team

The Regional Team consists of 4 Regional Contact Persons who are the representatives of their respective regions, and the link between the Board, the Secretariat and the Member Organisations of YEE.

YEE Structure

Together, these various components of the YEE structure form a strong and cohesive network dedicated to promoting environmental sustainability, empowering youth, and driving positive change across Europe and beyond.

YEE is a member organisation of:

A Brief History of YEE


Youth and Environment Europe, established in 1983 as the European branch of the International Youth Federation for Environmental Studies and Conservation (IYF).

3rd August, 1983

YEE as a founder

After the work of a research group on the forest, a new organisation was born from YEE: the European Youth Forest Action (EYFA).


Move to the Netherlands

The YEE office moved to it’s second location in Utrecht, the Netherlands to locate it more centrally to the member organisations being part of the network at that time.



Second office in Malta

A member organisation from Malta hosted a second YEE office in order to deal with the Mediterranean issues closely.



Move to the Czech Republic

The third change of the location of the office occurred. This time the medieval stronghold Toulcuv Dvur in Prague was chosen.




YEE started to host volunteers who help as members of the office team in daily work of the organisation.



YEE as a founding member

YEE became a founding member of the EU4Ocean Coalition and Generation Climate Europe.



Advocacy Working Group

YEE set up new Advocacy Working Group (AWG) – an ambitious initiative to ensure even stronger participation of young people in environmental and climate governance processes, building closer links with decision-makers and advocating for action on climate change.


More about AWG2020

Observer status to Bern Convention

YEE was granted observer status to the Bern Convention as the first youth organisation.