In the Chair of the Forum’s closing statement, EIGE Director Carlien Scheele addressed the all-important priority to look through the eyes of others to find new ways to develop powerful policies for a gender-equal Europe.

In just two days we’ve had dozens of inspiring discussions and met hundreds of amazing people united by a shared ambition for true gender equality.

And many, many of you have made pledges to take #3StepsForward.

So, where do we go from here?

We need to turn all this talk into action.

At this Forum, we gave space for the youth to speak loud and clear.

And we listened.

We heard their concerns, their values and their dreams.

We learned their all-important perspective.

In the European Year of Youth, we owe it to them to act on this.

By looking through the eyes of others we can find new ways to develop powerful policies for a gender-equal Europe.

I hope what you have learned at the Forum has given you a greater purpose towards that goal.

It’s doable. You can do it.

We’re in the eye of a storm. But together we’re stronger.

And if we continue to form new coalitions, share and support each other, we will prevail.

I want to thank those who worked tirelessly behind the scenes to coordinate this event and mobilise such a fabulous group of participants.

My thanks to the team at EIGE;

The contractors supporting them;

The panelists;

The speakers;

The session organisers;

And the sign language interpreters, who helped make this such an inclusive, open event.

Finally, my biggest thanks to you for playing your part.

The hundreds attending in person and the tens of thousands more who joined us online.

But now your work really begins.

Between now and our next Forum in 2024, we want you to take your own #3StepsForward towards creating a gender-equal Europe.

You can revisit every session from this event online. And I will publish my Chair Statement in December.

For our part, EIGE will continue to invest in research, data and outreach to support the Commission in the remaining years of the Gender Equality Strategy.

We will take what we learned in today’s closing session to inform our work in 2023 on the Green Deal and Gender Equality.

We’re almost there, but not completely.

For those of you who have not seen ‘The Conductor’ documentary movie yet, you can watch it at 2 PM here at the Forum venue.

Some of you will also stay on for EIGE’s Expert Forum meeting or a meeting for EIGE’s Regional Coordination Platform for Gender Equality Action in the Western Balkans and Turkey, as a part of EIGE’s project funded by the European Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR).

And for all others - as a parting note, I leave you with a thought-provoking teaser for our next campaign.