The experience of the International Youth camp, an essential political moment!

Kayla, a member of the Belgian delegation to the International Youth Camp, reports from a busy stay in Vieure.

 

Source: International Viewpoint

The International Youth camp took place from 23 to 29 July 2022 in Vieure, France. After two years of suspension due to Covid-19, the gathering is a week of self-managed camp that this year brought together more than 200 young revolutionaries from different parts of Europe, but also from Ukraine, Russia, Brazil and Mexico to celebrate the 37th edition of the youth camps of the Fourth International.

This annual camp is dedicated to indepth discussion of different themes, to the sharing of our local and international struggles and to the developing of common strategies and actions. Each day is divided into several parts. The mornings are reserved for plenary educationals on themes such as ecosocialism, feminist and LGBTQIA+ struggles, imperialism, anti-racism, anti-fascism, class struggle as youth and strategic approaches. This year we had guests such as Andreas Malm (Socialistika Partiet, Sweden), Olivia Borchmann (SUF, Denmark), Julien Salingue (NPA, France), Laurent Sorel, (Gauche Éco-Socialiste, ex Ensemble Insoumis, France), Marta Autore (Comunia, Italy) and Jonathan Simmel (SUF, Denmark)

The afternoons are mainly aimed at highlighting specific concepts or situations arising from the theme of the plenary. They consist of concrete workshops on different struggles, inter-delegation meetings to deepen our international knowledge and share strategies of struggle, but also non-mixed spaces for self-organisation of feminist, LGBTQIA+ and anti-racist struggles. In order to build and elaborate a real internationalist struggle, standing commissions on the Russian imperialist war in Ukraine and ecosocialism today were also on the agenda. A declaration in solidarity with the resistance of the Ukrainian people was also adopted.

Throughout the busy stay, the camp also remains a place for practising self-management where young activists manage the different daily tasks from cleaning to multilingual interpretation. There are also voluntary tasks such as the awareness team (to deal with conflicts or personal concerns) or the care team (which acts as a preventative measure and ensures the well-being of everyone) that allow us to make the space as safe as possible and to carry out certain tasks around care.

This kind of political practice is even more indispensable in a materialist perspective. The neoliberal capitalist system in which we live shapes our thinking; in other words, our consciousness is constructed according to the world around us. Throughout the year we fight this system, even when the revolution seems far away, we know that the struggle is permanent and on all fronts. For many participants, far from being a utopian space outside the system, the camp, by its organization and structure, allows us to have a foretaste of a self-managed internationalist communist solidarity society requiring perpetual adjustments in order to ensure the proper functioning of community life. Indeed, during meetings between FI youth delegates in preparation for the camp, the camp is constantly redefined each year on the basis of previous criticisms. The camp is organized by the member organizations or those close to the Fourth International in Europe, and its construction is ongoing and international.

This political moment is an essential exercise that acts as a catalyst facilitating the sharing of experiences, a festive atmosphere and above all a true spirit of camaraderie. The experience of the youth camp is essential in the construction of tomorrow’s anti-capitalist, ecosocialist, feminist, queer, anti-racist, anti-fascist and internationalist society.

Translated by International Viewpoint from Gauche Anticapitaliste

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