Eduarda Marques

Born in Guimarães, graduated in Philosophy from the Faculty of Philosophy of Braga of the Catholic University of Portugal and post graduated in Marketing with specialization in Relational Marketing and Communication, from ISCTE.

She was a teacher in the area of Social and Human Sciences and had directorships positions as a board member of Movijovem’s, a cooperative that manages the Youth Hostels and Youth Card, and as Vice-President of the Consumer Institute.

From 2014 to the present time, she is the Regional Director of Lisbon and Vale do Tejo Portuguese Institute of Sport and Youth and Director of the Lisbon Youth Center.

Her professional career allowed her to gain experience in the areas of associativism, intervention and participation.

Welcome and opening session

Good morning to everyone and welcome!

It is a great pleasure for me and the IPDJ [Portuguese Institute of Sports and Youth] to welcome you to the Youth Center of Lisbon.

This center is recognized by the Council of Europe as a space of promotion of human rights, the rule of law and democracy. These are the three main principles of that great European institution that exists for almost 70 years and has 47 members-states, all of them signatories to the European Convention of Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law.

Human rights are what is at stake in the reflection and discussion of the topic that brings us here today. When we talk about human rights, we are talking about life, a dignified existence for everyone! Human dignity has no price and should always be ensured, guaranteed, respected for each and every one of us and by each and every one of us!

“Every person’s moral and physical integrity is inviolable” says the Constitution of the Portuguese Republic, that dedicates its I Part to “Fundamental Rights and Duties” and establishes 24 articles to “Personal rights, freedoms and guarantees”. We also find in the Constitution an article that is essential for us at IPDJ – article 70!

As you know, IPDJ’s mission statement is the execution of a decentralized and integrated policy for the areas of sports and youth, supporting associativism, volunteering and promotion of citizenship, recreation programs, non-formal education, information and geographical mobility of young people in Portugal and abroad. Article 70 of the Constitution states the rights of young people which we aim to disseminate, mainly through awareness raising sessions from young people to young people, in several places but mostly through schools.

Education for us is key. Education for human rights, education for awareness of values, of citizenship, and doing it through the participation of young people in volunteering, such as Namorar Com Fair Play, through acquired tools in the context of the Programa Empreende Já, which promotes employment, through the support to juvenile associativism, another great school of participation and non-formal education!

I could list here every single area of intervention in which we work on in IPDJ, but I leave you these as examples, challenging you to search for us to know more and participate!

Obviously, we work as a network, we have partnership, we partner with initiatives and we are very honored to have the quality of our work recognized by the Council of Europe, since 2015 and for five more years, but it is also a great responsibility! Talk, work on human rights is increasingly essential, it mandates that we keep a permanent focus on what matters the most which is the common good, respect for others, the freedom of each individual.

The goals, the purpose of this project, which is to contribute to a public policy that aims to protect women and girls and the prevention and eradication of their sexual exploitation, mainly through public exit programs, is in complete agreement with the mission of this Center to be a space of discussion, of sharing of experiences and informed opinions. We want this Center to be a reference in the work for and with young people. “Giving you a voice” is what we want to do.

The Lisbon Youth Center is also yours! Propose, make this space a laboratory, a space of work! We also want to grow with you!

Let us raise together the European flag, a symbol of sharing and union, of acceptance of diversity. Let it be a symbol of our firm conviction in combating any forms of discrimination and of our promotion of life, dignity and human rights!

The IPDJ and the Lisbon Youth Center thank you for choosing this place to organize this conference, because it is a space of inclusion, reflection, and implementation of activities that dignify the human person. We are an open door to the world and to the future, a future that must foster a society in which the violence of prostitution is not the norm, but the exception.

In conclusion, I wish you a productive and enriching day.

Thank you very much and have a great day!

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