Rome Hub has created the Europe-wide network #EUnite dedicated to organizing digital events and awareness campaigns to promote the ideals of “Unity in Diversity” in the period leading to the annual Europe Day on May 9th. The first edition was held in 2020 and the second edition is currently in development.
The project was first proposed by Rome Hub shortly after the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in Europe. In this trying historic moment, young people of Europe craved more than ever to connect in a meaningful way to uphold the values of cohesion and solidarity above national divides.
Rome Hub has led the first edition of the project, gathering over 120 Shapers from 23 Hubs. It has coordinated Italian Hubs in establishing partnerships with universities and youth networks, and published an open letter in the leading Italian magazine L’Espresso. Shapers of Rome have coordinated the organization and execution of the project's main event on 9th May 2020, live streamed from multiple locations.
In early March 2021, a cross-hub core team re-emerged to plan and implement the second edition of the project. From March to May 2021 the team holds regular weekly meetings - open to all Shapers - dedicated to project development.
2020 EDITION (completed)
#EUnite was an initiative of Andrea De Cicco Nardone and Robert Zielonka from the Rome Hub. They and other Shapers of Rome have coordinated the cross-hub core team of project organizers throughout the first edition.
Italian Hubs coordinated by Rome Hub contacted Italian universities to join the campaign and promote its message. Seven universities posted about the #EUnite campaign on their social media platforms ((Università di Milano, Università di Siena, Università Sant’Anna di Pisa, Campus Biomedico Roma, Università di Verona, Università di Modena e Reggio Emilia and Università del Piemonte Orientale), two other universities shared the campaign through their internal mailing lists (Università di Cagliari and Università della Valle d’Aosta).
Rome Hub has also contacted and involved some other youth organisations, including Consiglio Nazionale Giovani (National Youth Council), the Erasmus Student Network Italy, Giosef Italy and One Hour For Europe. The #EUnite campaign was leveraged to reach out to these organizations and lay the foundations for future partnerships and collaborations for other projects.
Rome Hub wrote an open letter to L’Espresso, one of Italy’s most read weekly magazines, which was published both in the online and printed versions, reaching an estimated number of 220,000 people based on the average sales of the magazine per week.
The main activity was a full-day digital event on 9th May 2020 reaching schools and universities, youth networks, enterprises and policy makers. It included two live roundtables and a series of recorded interviews on EU-related affairs featuring leading experts, EU officials and citizens, as well as several discussions and creative performances. The full agenda of the event is available on its Facebook page.
This main event was streamed by 13,000 viewers reached entirely organically, with no budget whatsoever spent on advertisements. To maximize reach, Shapers had created a Facebook event (rather than a new Facebook page) co-hosted by twenty Facebook pages, each one belonging to a participating Hub.
2021 EDITION (Planning Phase)
In the Spring 2021, the Rome Hub launched a renewed call to action to expand and structure the core team of the 2021 EUnite edition. From 3rd March 2021, the Rome Hub co-chair weekly videocalls to develop the project and, in the near future, to coordinate its implementation.
Following the successes and learnings from the first edition, EUnite 2021 will feature a main cross-hub event on 9th May and a framework for local events and awareness campaigns.
Core team is currently reactivating Hubs that have participated last year and recruiting new ones. Specific goals, activities, and expected impact of the 2021 edition will be defined soon.