The Youth Atlantic Treaty Association (YATA) is a network of young professionals and academics who are interested in international security policies. YATA consists of 36 member organizations or so-called national chapters, all of which are the youth wings of established NGO’s in their respective countries. These NGO’s act as the national chapters of YATA’s parent organization, the Atlantic Treaty Association (ATA). YATA’s vision is to be the leading youth network to foster the values of democracy, rule of law, liberty, peace and security, and reinforce the transatlantic link.
YATA strives to draw together the young leaders of today and tomorrow and we see it as our mission to bridge the gap between the policy level and civil society. YATA focus on dynamic youth engagement and transatlantic cooperation in areas of international security and defense through:
- the enhancement of debate and education within the general population;
- the engagement and development of youth to be active participants as well as responsible decision and opinion makers in the constantly changing security environment;
- and the strengthening of youth visibility and influence through the facilitation of network building between policy makers and civil society.
YATA remains instrumental in aligning values from both sides of the Atlantic and generally promote international cooperation and dialog. We act as a forum for debate in which member associations can realize common interests and democratic goals in the security environment of the 21st century.
YATA seeks to educate and promote cooperation among youth in NATO Allied and Partner countries, in an effort to create responsible future leaders who have an understanding of and are committed to the values in the North Atlantic Treaty.
- Volunteerism provides the foundation for YATA and is therefore, a precondition for the success of the organization. Our national chapters consist of students, young researchers and professionals who all contribute their free time to improving our global community by drawing attentions to important issues, being constructively critical of decision-makers, promoting dialog and thereby impacting agendas. Strong academic and social networks made up of dedicated individuals are created on all levels while working toward a common cause.
- Open dialog is an important part of how and why we involve young people, namely in the belief that if two individuals have engaged in civil dialog, hostility between them is less likely. YATA makes questions of global security more relevant to younger generations. YATA provides a forum for factual well-informed discussion by educating and facilitating debates that develop ideas which we can help to communicate through various channels.
- Development and leadership are central to ensuring that volunteers are constantly developing skills and being challenged. With the help of good leadership and personal development structures, YATA works to recognize and motivate volunteers. The organizational skills and political knowledge developed in YATA, as well as the ability to communicate with, manage, and motivate individuals from a wide array of countries and cultures, are competencies that prepare volunteers for the future as leaders and catalysts of change.