European & International News

’Happy Voting’ Project Encourages Young Europeans to Vote!

[Press Release of the European Youth Forum, 28 March, 2014] #HappyVoting video release aims to get young people voting in May! - Through pop-culture, the video aims to raise voter awareness and get young people excited and involved in the European Elections in May by using their two favourite channels: entertainment and the internet.

Supported by the League of Young Voters and produced by a professional production studio, the campaign is based on Pharrell William’s ‘Happy Formula’, which incorporates a selection of non-actors who separately dance to the catchy billboard song. The European remake includes scenes filmed in over fifty diverse locations across Brussels, including the European Parliament. It features sixty actors, and politicians from across the political spectrum and received support from Pharrell Williams’ Production Company I AM OTHER.

Endorsed by hundreds of organisations, the video will also be screened during the European Youth Event (9-11 May) in Strasbourg, with over five thousand young participants expected to attend. The campaign behind the Happy Voting video will promote it to a pan-European audience with the aim of reaching as many viewers as possible before the elections in May.

The video will be shared through a variety of channels, including social media sites, blogs, websites and media outlets. The campaign does not use advertisement tools and instead relies on volunteers to share the Happy Voting video using the hashtag #HappyVoting.

In past European elections, a general lack of information on the elections and the issues at stake meant that around 70% of the European Union’s young people did not vote. As a consequence, the focus on young people’s needs and interests was alarmingly low. Young people of the EU are barely represented in the European Parliament and issues concerning them are not debated, yet the current crisis and the austerity measures hit young people particularly hard.

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