WORLD FEDERATION OF DEMOCRATIC YOUTH
CONSTITUTION OF WFDY ADOPTED BY THE 13TH ASSEMBLY ATHENS 5-10 DECEMBER 1990
THE ORIGIN OF WFDY
On November 10, 1945, the World Youth Conference ended its proceedings in London. This Conference, convened at the initiative of the World Youth Council, which was formed during the war against fascism by the youth of the allied countries, brought together for the first time in the history of the international youth movement representatives of more than 30 million young people of different political persuasions and religious beliefs, of 63 nations.
The World Youth Conference founded the WFDY. It adopted a pledge for peace and the constitution of WFDY.
“We pledge that we shall remember this unity, forged in this month, November 1945 Not only today, not only this week, this year, but always Until we have built the world we have dreamed of and fought for We pledge ourselves to build the unity of youth of the world All races, all colours, all nationalities, all beliefs To eliminate all traces of fascism from the earth To build a deep and sincere international friendship among the peoples of the world To keep a just lasting peace To eliminate want, frustration, and enforced idleness We have come to confirm the unity of all youth salute our comrades who have died-and pledge our word that skilful hands, keen brains and young enthusiasm shall never more be wasted in war
FORWARD FOR OUR FUTURE!”
CONSTITUTION ACT OF WFDY
“We, the youth of the world, meeting at the World Conference called by the World Youth Council, and held in London in November 1945, following the victorious war waged by the united nations against fascist aggression, do hereby constitute the WORLD FEDERATION OF DEMOCRATIC YOUTH on this 10th day of November 1945. This WORLD FEDERATION pledges to carry into effect the policy defined at this and subsequent conferences, and is an organization of youth united in their determination to work fork peace, freedom, democracy, independence and equality every in the world. The World Federation of Democratic Youth shall regard its work of the United Nations and as the most certain way of ensuring the protection of the rights and interests of youth and the happiness and well-being of future generations.”
CONSTITUTION OF WFDY
Name, Principles, Aims and Activities of WFDY
WORLD FEDERATION OF DEMOCRATIC YOUTH (WFDY)
Principles and Aims
The WFDY includes youth organization in different countries and of diverse political tendencies, religious beliefs and forms of activity which, on the basis of equality and mutual respect for their autonomy, wish to coordinate their efforts for the best satisfaction of the interest of youth and to make their contribution to the common ideas of freedom, independence, democracy, friendship, international solidarity and world peace.
The WFDY considers the development of international understanding as well as cooperation between all international, regional and national youth organizations of the world as a fundamental task in contributing to the strengthening of the unity of action and international solidarity of youth, of all anti-imperialist, progressive and democratic forces, to the satisfaction of the interests of all young people, taking into account the existence of a great variety of forms of association based on national ideas, conditions and interests, and the necessity for young people to go beyond these differences and face their common problems together.
The WFDY carries on political, economic and social activity and works in the field of education and culture:
To contribute to the education of youth in the spirit of freedom, democracy and solidarity, to end imperialism, colonialism, and neo-colonialism, to end racist and fascist regimes, to ensure peace and security in the world by supporting all initiatives and efforts to this effect;
To promote the active participation of youth in economic, social, cultural and political life, by acting against all restrictions and discriminations connected with age, sex, methods of education, domicile, property, social status, religion, political convictions, colour and race, so as to ensure in all countries and for all young people full freedom of speech, of the press, of religious belief, assembly and organization;
To support the struggle of youth for higher living standards, for better conditions of education, work and leisure and for development of cultural, educational and sports activities for all young people;
To further the development of youth generation in the spirit of peace and international friendship and to support the noble principles of the Charter of the United Nations;
As an organization representing a major part pf the young generation, to support youth’s interests via all international bodies and in affairs of international character. Wherever possible WFDY endeavours to call the attention of these bodies and of world public opinion to the problems of young people, and to encourage them to help in solving these problems.
In order to achieve these aims, the WFDY operates in the following way: holding of events and carrying out of international activities, rendering assistance to initiatives taken by other organizations or in common with them, sponsoring of and practical aid to international, bilateral and national initiatives and contracts arranged by organizations in different countries, in conformity with their own situation and their own interests.
To this effect the WFDY strives to:
Carry out effective research on all the needs of youth and gain public support in solving their problems;
Facilitate and encourage joint actions by youth organizations of different countries, bilateral and multilateral contacts and other direct means serving the cause of friendship, understanding and cooperation;
Promote and support international youth events in order to contribute to the solution of youth problems;
Promote and afford every possible assistance to youth organizations whose work is hampered either due to special situations –victims of imperialist aggressions, of colonial domination, of different kinds of repression or persecution- or in the case of natural disasters, by encouraging moral and material solidarity, especially through collections by youth, set up an International Solidarity Fund;
Help to develop tourist exchanges, holiday schemes, festivals, cultural and sports competitions and youth organizations of all countries, for the promotion of new talents, for the advancement of natural culture and sport, for international understanding and friendship;
Maintain the closest possible contact with the Unite Nations Organization and its agencies, particularly with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), and the International Labour Organization (ILO), by cooperating in their programmes for youth and by interesting them in solution of questions of vital concern to young people;
Develop contacts and cooperation with other international organizations concerned with youth problems, including the carrying through of and joint support for campaigns, meetings and reciprocal visits, exchange of information, publications and all other forms of cooperation;
Strengthen contacts and cooperation with national, continental or international organizations by establishing common areas of work and action, and envisaging the signing of bilateral agreements;
Develop cooperation with trade union and other international professional organizations, for implementation of rights of youth.
The WFDY publishes regularly in different languages, the magazine “World Youth”, as well as other publications.
The executive bodies of the WFDY must set up all bodies necessary for the accomplishment of its tasks, taking into account the different forms of activities and sectors of youth.
Status of WFDY
Article 1: The Member Organizations of WFDY
1.1. All national youth NGOs, regardless of their ideological, political or religious orientation, which contribute which contribute to the safeguarding of the interests and the promotion of the activities of youth, may become members of WFDY. Organizations advocating racist or fascist ideas are banned from membership of WFDY.
1.2. The different categories of membership are:
FULL members: those national organizations, which fully accept the aims, principles and the constitution of WFDY.
OBSERVER members: those national organizations which support the aims and principles of WFDY’s activity but do not satisfy all requirements for full member or do not wish to be a full member.
ASSOCIATE members: those organizations which would like to cooperate closely with WFDY but do not wish (or do not satisfy the requirements) to be full or observer members. National youth councils may become Associate members of WFDY.
1.3. The sovereignty and autonomy of WFDY member organizations are fully guaranteed.
1.4. Affiliation to WFDY does not preclude affiliation to other organizations or associations.
1.5. New members shall be accepted into WFDY by a decision of the General Council. All applications for affiliation are to be presented by the President and decided by the General Council. The application must be supported by at least 5 full members. After consultations, decisions on affiliation to WFDY shall be taken by a simple majority vote of the members attending the meeting of General Council and to be ratified by next Assembly.
1.6. Membership in WFDY may be suspended or cancelled by the Assembly at the proposal of the General Council. The membership of organizations that declare their dissolution is automatically cancelled.
The decision to cancel or suspend the membership shall be taken by two-thirds majority vote of the participants of the Assembly.
Membership may be cancelled for the following reasons:
An organization does not participate in the activities of WFDY for more than two years without any explanation or information;
An organization does not pay its membership fee for more than two years without a justifiable reason.
Member organizations may withdraw from WFDY or suspend their membership; notification must be given of this decision. Membership can be suspended temporarily by the decision of the General Council. This decision should be taken two-thirds majority vote of those present and presented to the next Assembly for approval.
1.7. Any regional or international youth organization may have a consultative status with WFDY, provided that it has close cooperation with WFDY on issues of mutual interest or within its competence. The Consultative Status gives the possibility for achieving bilateral agreements on concrete aspects of cooperation.
International Bureau for Youth Tourism and Exchanges has Consultative Status with WFDY.
Article 2: Rights and Obligations of Member Organizations
2.1.1 Full member organizations have the following rights:
To participate in the Assembly of member organizations by sending at least one delegate, to take part in the discussions and decisions-makings on all affairs of WFDY;
To vote in the Assembly, based on the principle of one organization one vote;
To be elected to the executive bodies of WFDY;
To submit proposals for the considerations of the Assembly and its executive bodies, and to be present when decisions on matters concerning their organizations are taken by these bodies, and to be consulted on decisions concerning their countries.
To apply to the executive bodies of WFDY for assistance in implementing their activities.
To participate in all activities of WFDY.
2.1.2 Observer member organizations have the following rights:
A. To participate in the assembly of WFDY by sending at least one delegate having the right to take part in the discussions and to put forward draft resolutions;
B. To put suggestions to the executive bodies of WFDY, and to be consulted when these bodies take decisions concerning their organizations;
C. To participate in all the activities of WFDY;
D. To apply to the governing bodies of WFDY for assistance in implementing their activities.
2.1.3 Associate member organizations have the following rights:
A. To participate in the Assembly of WFDY and to take part in the discussions;
B. To submit proposals for joint initiatives and / or activities within their competence for the consideration of the Assembly or its executive bodies;
C. To be consulted on WFDY’s initiatives within their competence or to take place in their countries;
D. To apply to the governing bodies of WFDY for assistance in solving problems covered in the bilateral agreements and in the carrying out of associated initiatives.
2.2.1 Full member organizations have the following obligations:
A. To accept the aims, principles and the Constitution of WFDY;
B. To work for the implementation of the decision of governing bodies of WFDY and for the success of initiatives to which they have agreed;
C. To work for the united action of youth at the national level and to promote cooperation between the different organizations for the satisfaction of the interests of youth;
D. To strive to develop cooperation, solidarity and friendship at international level;
E. To fulfil their financial obligation by paying the membership fees.
2.2.2 Observer member organisations have the following obligations:
A. To implement the decisions of the governing bodies of WFDY, which they have accepted;
B. To promote further cooperation with WFDY on the national, regional and international level;
C. To contribute to the success of the WFDY activities in conformity with their interests and views;
D. To fulfil the financial obligation by paying the membership fees.
2.2.3 Associate number organisations have the obligation to fulfil the agreements concluded in their capacity as associate members.
2.3 Members organisations are not obliged to apply decisions of assembly or of the executive bodies of WFDY with which they do not agree.
2.4 Member organisations facing similar conditions or having the same priorities have the right to organize, within the WFDY, a coordination mechanisms of their work on certain political and thematical issues; non-member organisation can be involved in activities. Such a mechanisms should not contradict the aims, principles, political guidelines and decisions of governing bodies of the Federation. It has the right to apply for assistance to the governing bodies of the Federation.
Article 3: The Assembly of Member Organisations
3.1 The Assembly is the supreme governing body of WFDY. It is composed of all member organizations through their direct or appointed representatives and representatives of BITEJ and International Committee of Children’s and Adolescent’s Movements as well as any other organization or association having consultative status with WFDY. Voting right in the Assembly is granted to all organizations according to their category of membership.
3.2 The Assembly of member organizations shall meet at least once every four years. The time, place and draft agenda shall be fixed by the General Council. All member organizations shall be informed of the holding of the Assembly at least three months in advance.
3.3 At the request of not less than one-third of the member organizations, or by a two-thirds majority decision of the General Council, an Extraordinary Assembly may be called.
3.4 The Extraordinary Assembly on a single urgent issue may be held also in the form of a referendum by post. The detailed procedure of the referendum shall be determined by the General Council.
3.5 Powers of the Assembly:
3.5.1 To discuss and decide upon the general political line of the Federation, and on the economic, political, social, educational and cultural problems and activities of the youth and their organizations and their material and moral interests;
3.5.2 To amend the Constitution, if necessary;
3.5.3 To examine and discuss the reports on the work of the General Council and the Auditing Commission;
3.5.4 To elect the General Council and the Auditing Commission from among WFDY full member organizations;
3.5.5 To cancel or approve the suspension of the membership of any organization in WFDY;
3.5.6 To determine the site for the permanent headquarters of WFDY;
3.6 All decisions of the Assembly shall be taken separately through the effort to reach mutually acceptable agreement. If this is not possible, the decisions shall be taken by a simple majority vote, except for amendments to the constitution and cancellation or suspension of membership, which shall require a two-thirds majority. The procedure and voting arrangements shall be determined by the Assembly.
3.7 The quorum shall consist of one half plus one half of the full member organisation of WFDY.
3.8 Each organisation or group of organisations has the right to reserve its position or make a statement on any decision to be included as a WFDY document, guaranteeing the rights of minorities in the Federation.
Article 4: The General Council
4.1 The General Council is the main governing body of the Federation between two Assemblies. It is the executive body to carry into effect the tasks of the WFDY as fixed by the Assembly. It is the sole body, which may speak on behalf of the Federation between the General Assemblies.
4.2 The General Council shall be composed of the members elected directly by the Assembly from the full member organisations on the basis of the proper representation of all regions for the period between two Assemblies. Its number shall not exceed one fourth of the total number of member organisations. The exact number, procedure of elections and the number of vote required to be elected is to be determined by the Assembly.
4.3 Each elected organisation shall name one number who shall be the representative of the organisation to the General Council. Changing of the representatives must be notified to the President.
4.4 The general council shall meet not less than once a year and shall be convened by the President. Extraordinary meetings may be called by the president or at the request of two thirds of General Council members.
4.5 The quorum for the General Council shall consist of one half of its members plus one. The chairperson of the Auditing Commission, the director of International Voluntary Service for Solidarity and Friendship of Youth, the head of the Financial Department and the representatives of organizations having consultative status with WFDY shall have the right to attend the meetings of the General Council in a consultative capacity. The decision on certain urgent issue can be taken also by post.
4.6 The General Council is accountable to the Assembly for all its activities and decisions.
4.7 Functions of the General Council:
4.7.1 To ensure the implementation of the decisions of the Assembly through its permanent involvement in the activities of the Federation;
4.7.2 To adopt the position and standpoint WFDY on major political issues on the basis of the decisions of the Assembly;
4.7.3 To convene the Assembly of WFDY;
4.7.4 To elect the President, General Secretary and Vice-President and to decide on changes in the composition of the Coordinating Council in case of need;
4.7.5 To examine and evaluate the annual work of the Federation on the basis of the written report presented beforehand by the President;
4.7.6 To adopt the annual plan of work of the Federation;
4.7.7 To examine and adopt the reports of the members of the Coordinating Council, to evaluate the performance of each of them and, if necessary to make changes in its composition;
4.7.8 To appoint the Financial Commission including the head from among the members of the Coordinating Council;
4.7.9 To define the financial rules of the Federation, to adopt the annual budget and examine and adopt the balance of the previous year presented by the General Secretary and the Auditing Report. To request the Auditing Commission or independent Auditor to prepare the Auditing Report;
4.7.10 To exercise the legal ownership of the property of the Federation;
4.7.11 To determine what fees are to be paid by the member organizations;
4.7.12 To make the decision on the affiliation of new members;
4.7.13 To make the decision on the suspension of membership of any organization. Such a decision shall require a two-thirds majority vote of those present and shall be presented for the final decision of the next Assembly;
4.7.14 To make the final decision on joining international structures, organization and institutions, after consulting with the member organizations concerned countries.
4.8 Each organization or group of organizations has the right to reserve its position or make a statement on any decision.
4.9 All decisions of the General Council shall be taken separately through the efforts to reach mutually acceptable agreement. If this is not possible, the decision shall be taken by a simple majority vote except for cancellation or sustention of membership, which shall require a two-thirds majority vote.
4.10 The General Council shall elect a women’s commission of 5 members from those organizations which volunteer to appoint a delegate. This commission elects its coordinator; she or her deputy shall have the right to attend the General Council and Coordinating Council meetings.
Article 5: The Auditing Commission
5.1 The Auditing Commission shall consist of five members elected by the Assembly. It shall have its own chairman who will convene its meetings. The members of the Auditing Commission must not be members of the General Council.
5.2 The Auditing Commission shall meet regularly before the holding of the Assembly. Furthermore, the Auditing Commission may meet whenever it feels it necessary to do so, or when the President of WFDY calls for its meeting.
5.3 The Auditing Commission shall supervise the financial affairs of the Federation, and observe that the financial rules are strictly adhered to and not violated.
5.4 The Auditing Commission shall draw up an Auditing Report for submission to the Assembly. The Auditing Commission shall be accountable to the Assembly.
5.5 The Chairman of the Auditing Commission (or his/her deputy) shall have the right to attend the meetings of the General Council.
Article 6: The Coordinating Council
6.1 The Coordinating Council coordinates and facilitates the work of the General Council.
6.2 The members of the Coordinating Council shall be elected by the General Council from among its members. The Coordinating Council is elected for a two years term. Its number shall not exceed one third of the members of the General Council. The Coordinating shall not necessarily be based in the headquarters. A meeting of the Coordinating Council may be called by the President or General Secretary if there is a need for a political decision on behalf of WFDY.
6.3 The Coordinating Council shall be composed of the President, the General Secretary and the Vice-presidents.
6.4 The Director of SIVSAJ and the head of the Financial Department have the right to participate in the meetings of the Coordinating Council in consultative capacity.
6.5 Functions of the members of the Coordinating Council:
6.5.1 The President represents the Federation and acts on behalf of it within the guidelines of the General Council, chairs the Assembly and the General Council meetings, and oversees the implementation of the decisions of the Assembly and the General Council meetings, and oversees the implementation of the decisions of the Assembly and the General Council;
6.5.2 The General Secretary coordinates the work of the Coordinating Council and its responsible for the implementation of the plan of work;
6.5.3 The vice-presidents coordinate the activity of the federation in areas of its work constituting the priority of WFDY, and coordinate the WFDY activities in their respective regions.
6.6 Functions of the Coordinating Council:
The Coordinating Council:
6.6.1 Is entrusted to carry into effect the decisions of the Assembly General Council, the Plan of Work and the Budget of WFDY;
6.6.2 Ensures permanent liaison with member organizations and regional commissions, directs the different services and commissions and is responsible for issuing WFDY publications;
6.6.3 Adopts a position on urgent issues within the lines adopted by the Assembly and General Council, which must be approved by the General Council, and presents proposals for standpoints on important issues to the General Council;
6.6.4 Appoints such permanent or temporary staff as is necessary to ensure the efficient running of the day to day work and activities of the WFDY, and runs the properties of WFDY, subject of the ratification of the General Council.
6.6.5 Is entrusted to represent WFDY in the development of its relationship with other youth organizations, United Nations bodies, inter-governmental institutions and organizations.
6.7 All decision of the Coordinating Council shall be adopted by a simple majority vote.
6.8 The activities of the Coordinating Council shall be submitted for approval to the General Council.
Article 7: The Regional Commissions
7.1 To coordinate the activities in the respective regions and to advise the General Council on issues related to them, depending on the decision of the member organizations of the regions, Regional Commissions of WFDY may be established. They should be the following:
-Commission on Africa
-Commission on Asia and Pacific
-Commission on Europe and North America
-Commission on Latin America and Caribbean
-Commission on Middle East
7.2 The regional commissions shall be composed basically of General Council member organizations in the respective regions and other member organizations where decided in the respective regions.
7.3 Regional commissions may elect regional coordinators from among their member organizations.
7.4 Regional Coordinators have the status of vice-president and work from the region as liaison officers between the Coordinating Council and member organizations in their respective region. Their election shall be approved by the General Council.
Article 8: International Voluntary Service Committee-SIVSAJ
8.1 SIVSAJ is the body of the Federation for coordinating the activities of member organizations in the field of voluntary service projects and scholarship. It organizes its activities and projects on the basis of the WFDY Plan of Work and Budget.
8.2 The organization of the Director of SIVSAJ is appointed by the General Council and accountable to it.
9.1 The financial resources of the Federation shall consist of the sums paid in fees by the member organizations of the Federation, and of the income from other resources, such as unconditional donations from youth organizations, collectives or individuals, and payments received for services rendered within the framework of the activities provided for under the Constitution.
9.2 Membership fees
9.2.1 An annual membership fee shall be paid by each full and observer member organization. The amount is to be determined in each case by the General Council. The membership fee shall be paid before July each year, and shall be calculated for each calendar year.
9.2.2 An organization failing to pay its membership fees for a period of one year or more without justifiable cause, can by a decision of the general Council be deprived of voting rights in the leading bodies of the Federation and of all financial support from the Federation. The same decision for the organizations coming to the Assembly can be taken by the Assembly.
9.3 Budget and Financial Reporting
9.3.1 The Annual Budget of the Federation shall be approved and adopted by the General Council. It shall be under the administrative responsibility of the Coordinating Council.
9.3.2 The General Council shall examine and approve the Annual Report on the implementation of the Budget, presented by the Financial Commission, and the Auditing Report.
9.3.3 The General Council adopts the Financial Regulations of the Federation.
9.3.4 The General Council appoints the Financial Commission from amongst the members of the Coordinating Council. The Financial Commission supervises the implementation of the Budget, planning and realization of the economy of WFDY, advises the Coordinating council on financial decisions, formulates future budgetary guidelines for the general Council, prepares the financial report to the General Council under the supervision of which it works.
Anthem and Emblem of WFDY
10.1 The WFDY Anthem is “Song of Democratic Youth”.
10.2 The WFDY Emblem shall be adopted by the Assembly.
Article 11: Headquarters
The Headquarters of WFDY are determined by a decision of a two-thirds majority of the participants in the Assembly.
Article 12: Constitutional Documents and Amendments to the Constitution
12.1. Constitutional documents of WFDY are:
Constitution of WFDY –basic Constitutional Document.
Documents of the Assembly –valid between two Assemblies if not otherwise decided by the Assembly.
12.2 All amendments whether provisional or otherwise must east be adopted by a two-thirds majority of full member organizations present at the Assembly.
12.3 All amendments to the Constitution officially moved by the Coordinating Council or by the member organizations shall be circulated to all member organizations at least two months prior to the Assembly and the amendments moved by the member organizations should be submitted to the Coordinating Council three months prior to the General Council meeting.
Article 13: Languages
13.1 The official languages of WFDY are English, Spanish and French.
13.2 Documents with legal character and official documents of the Federation must be laid down in the official languages.
13.3 The working languages of the Assembly and the General Council are the official languages of WFDY. At the Assembly and the meetings of the General Council other languages may also be used.
13.4 The working language of the Coordinating Council is English.
Article 14: Dissolution of the Federation
The WFDY may be dissolved only by a decision of the Assembly of member Organizations passed by at least a two-thirds majority.
The site of the Headquarters of the World Federation of Democratic Youth is in Budapest, Hungary.