On 9 May 1950 the speech of the former French Foreign Minister, Robert Schuman, exposed the idea of a new form of cooperation for Europe. Schuman's declaration founded the roots of what is today the European Union, which every 9 May celebrates peace and unity on Europe day. 
We believe that in such a delicate moment in the history of the European Union, the contribution of young people in defining the future of Europe is fundamental. Thus, we set ourselves the goal of representing Europe as seen by the eyes of our Associates.
Having to describe the European Union in few words, among those identified, the following stand out: union, freedom, opportunity, future, pluralism and cooperation. But also: interests, utopia, particularisms and egoisms.
As Italian citizens, we are also automatically European citizens. One of the mottos on which the European construction is based on is "United in diversity", which underlines how being a European citizen, does not detract from our being Italian, French or Swedish, but only enriches us. Conversely, patriotic sentiments should not diminish the perception of a sense of European belonging. The issue is part of one of the great challenges of European construction, concerning its democratic element, and therefore the level of representation of European citizens in the institutions.
Most of us feel as Italian as European citizen. Being European citizens means being able to feel part of a bigger project, which does not look at national borders. Many owe a feeling of European belonging thanks to the Erasmus experience, the possibility of traveling without borders and the right to vote in the European Parliament. The connection with one's country of origin remains strong, due to cultural, historical and belonging elements. A general deficiency is perceived in the development of a true European sentiment, national differences remain marked.
When asked to describe the merits of the European Union, among the most frequent responses we find those that praise the great protection of fundamental rights and democratic guarantees, freedom of movement, opportunities for study, work and travel without borders, the single market, the European Monetary Union, the peacekeeping within the Community, trade agreements with third countries, scientific and technological cooperation and more generally the possibility of facing common challenges together, thus offering an example of humanity and solidarity in a world increasingly divided.
On the other hand, the criticisms exposed to the European Union are relevant, and in particular: the lack of political integration and cohesion, the divisions and internal inequalities, the decision-making impasse, scarce views to the future, the brake imposed by the unanimity rule in making fundamental decisions, an absence of decisive political weight in the world, inability to communicate, the ineffective management of the immigration phenomenon, the lack of responses to emerging problems, weak incisiveness of institutions, policies too far from the real needs of individual nations, the lack of a real common foreign and defense policy, the absence of a single tax system and a European army.
By elaborating on the European Union of the future, most of us hope for a much higher level of European integration in the idea that only a strong and cohesive Union can face international challenges and acquire significant influence on a global scale ; a small part, on the other hand, believes that the right path to follow is that of differentiated integration, in the idea that whoever pushes for more can encourage other Member States to align. Following are different visions regarding what we realistically believe will be Europe in the future. The evaluations of those who believe that in the long term little will change compared to today's Union, in consideration of a fundamental absence of a will to change or a decisive collaboration, prevail. In equal numbers those who believe will continue along the path of greater integration and those who believe, instead, will advance towards a differentiated integration logic. Few were the opinions of those who believe the Community mechanisms will be weakened and the sovereign logic will be strengthened.
The reforms that our Associates most support include: a strengthening of political integration, a reduction of inequalities between states, an implementation of the representativeness of the European institutions, greater protection of rights, a reform of the Dublin Treaty and a general enhancement migration policies, greater integration in the health sector, a boost to the development of a defense and a common foreign policy, greater fiscal and budgetary integration, a reform of the mechanisms, greater efforts in terms of climate change, an enlargement to the Balkans and greater support for young people.
We hope that the voices of young people will be asked first in the decision of what form the European Union will have to take, so we hope that our contribution can act as a starting point for reflection for all of us citizens, as the founding pillars of European construction.