About us

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The Green Academy Hungary Association (Zöld Szabadegyetem Egyesület, ZÖSZE) is an independent civil society organisation committed to creating and spreading a culture of green and European values in Hungary and the Central-East European region with the means of non-formal education, community building, and integration with green movements throughout Europe. We encourage citizens to increased democratic political participation in a spirit of volunteering, tolerance, and cooperation.

Our activities – the flagship being the Central East European Green Summer Academy organised every year since 2008 – are generally targeting an overwhelmingly (but not exclusively) young audience in Hungary and beyond. We wish to open a green perspective for them by connecting their aspirations to change society with the context of green thinking and the European green movement. We achieve that in an intensive partnership with European green partners – that’s why we are an associate member of the Federation of Young European Greens (FYEG).

Our association is a relatively young legal entity, registered in 2013. However, its founders have been already working together for several years on the Central-East European Green Summer Academies. The organisation cooperates intensively with the several hundred former participants, speakers and volunteers of the event, many of whom take regularly part in our activities.

We want promote European values and democratic ideas, teach the principles of ecopolitical thinking, help to develop ecopolitical alternatives within several policy areas, and contribute to an effective representation of ecopolitical ideas on the local, national and European level of decision making. In order to achieve that, we strengthen the emergence of communities, especially by actively supporting grassroot green initiatives and their projects. We also strive to make green practice in Hungary more accessible (e.g. for disabled or socially marginalised people). By doing that, we aim to educate for an active democratic citizenship and participation in environmental, social and economical issues.

Our main project, the annual Green Summer Academy – a combination of an intellectually outstanding summer academy and a festival with intercultural and family-friendly atmosphere – is the only regular event in the region where participant can discover green theory and practice during inspiring discussions with a large number of high-profile speakers both from Hungary and all over Europe. Each year, it provides a unique international and multicultural environment for mainly young people to get more involved in environmental, social and economical issues, to learn more about global issues and European or local answers, on the basis of common ecological and social interests and shared human values.

We are not affiliated to any political party. However, we are also not apolitical. We strive to show our community the synergies that can be created by a cooperation of green civil society activists with green political actors. With our activities, we aim to encourage citizens to get politically active – whether in party politics or in civil society organisations or other initiatives.