The Foundation

The non-partisan Schwarzkopf Foundation Young Europe was founded by Pauline Schwarzkopf in 1971 in Hamburg. The foundation´s mission is to empower young people from all backgrounds to be active European citizens who contribute to a pluralistic, democratic society through their engagement and opinions, leading to mutual understanding, solidarity and peaceful collaboration across Europe.

Our aim is to develop a dialogue between young people of 16 and 28 years of age and leading figures from the world of politics, the economy and culture. We provide young people with information about the decision-making process in Europe and make this process visible and tangible and thus beneficial to the education of young people. We discuss European political topics that are important and relevant to young people and in doing so aim to offer the chance to engage in European political thinking and understanding.

To meet these goals we offer lectures, seminars, debates, visits to embassies, exhibition visits, as well as EU Crash Courses at schools. In direct exchange with ambassadors, federal Ministers, journalists, European Members of Parliament, EU Commissioners, Prime Ministers, scientists and artists, young people are able to experience politics up-close and to take part in the political process.

Furthermore, the Schwarzkopf Foundation awards travel grants to young people to explore Europe and exchange European perspectives. With the Awards “Young European of the Year” and the annual “Schwarzkopf Europe Award“, the Schwarzkopf Foundation honours young people or public figures who are particularly committed to international understanding and a peaceful Europe.The Margot-Friedländer-Award has been calling on young people and trainees to deal with the history of the Holocaust, its witnessing in interactive projects and to work against today’s forms of anti-Semitism, racism and exclusion.

The Schwarzkopf Foundation has been the international umbrella organisation of the European Youth Parliament (EYP) since 2004. The European Youth Parliament is a peer-to-peer educational programme that brings together young people from across Europe to debate the pressing issues of our time.

Since October 2019, the Young Islam Conference has been a further program area of the Schwarzkopf Foundation. The Young Islam Conference is a dialogue forum for young adults and a network of more than 500 former conference participants who are committed to shape an inclusive pluralistic society.

As part of the Competence Network “Living together in migration society”, the Schwarzkopf Foundation is committed to promoting the political participation of young people, regardless of their origin. To do so, it offers advisory, training and dialogue services for educators, multipliers and volunteers from the field of child and youth welfare in the context of pluralism and difference. The aim is to make young people from different backgrounds heard as active citizens of a pluralistic, inclusive and democratic migration society.

The foundation´s charter can be found here (in German).


Find our missions, visions and our aims in our mission statement here.

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