Youth participation can be defined as everything that young people do, whether individually or as a group, with a view to influencing society, their relationships and their opportunities for personal and collective development. By joining together and forming youth associations, young people can explore all the options open to them as regards control over their own lives and what goes on in their surroundings.

The various youth associations reflect the wide range of interests and activities of young people in Catalonia (culture and art, new technologies, sports, politics, studies and student life, spare-time education, health, solidarity, international cooperation and peace, emancipation and sexual equality, protection of the environment, etc.).

Information is also available from the website of the General Directorate for Youth of the Catalan government (Direcció General de Joventut de la Generalitat de Catalunya).

Alternatively, you can contact the youth information centre in your town or city.

Spare-time education organisations (entitats d'educació en el lleure) are particularly notable among children's and youth associations. Such organisations are committed to social change and to passing on the values of democracy and public-spiritedness. They work with children and teenagers aged up to 18 at weekends and outside school hours on weekdays. They also run children's play centres (ludoteques) and organise camps (colònies) and summer activity programmes.

Spare-time education organisations use play and participation to promote co-existence. They focus on a range of topics that are important for the education of citizens, such as:

  • Respect for nature and the environment.

  • Health education (eating habits, hygiene, sexuality, drugs, etc.).

  • The participation and integration of children with special educational needs.

  • Teamwork and group dynamics.

  • Cultural diversity and cooperation.

For further information, see