Woman of Europe 2016

In 2016 the European Movement Germany (EBD) is awarding the “Women of Europe Prize” for the 25th time. With the award the cross-party network for European policy honours women “who through courageous, creative, or persistent voluntary commitment champion integration in and the strengthening of a united Europe in a particular way”. Adriana Lettrari is being honoured in the silver jubilee year. Born in 1979 in former East Germany, the political and communication scientist spent her formative years in a Germany that had reunited in 1990. She is one of around 2.4 million children of German reunification, who today are between 30 and 40 years old. Lettrari addressed the role the decades-long division of the continent still plays in the minds of Europeans early on. Her personal answer to the question was positive: She sees the experience and the different socialization in East and West as an opportunity – for Europe as well. In 2009 she founded the network “3rd Generation East Germany, which explores how young ‘East’ Germans dealt with the experience of the fall of the Berlin Wall. But Lettrari by no means only looks back: “We children who grew up during and after reunification have something in common with the generation of the same age in neighbouring eastern European countries, namely the experience of a rapid, for the most part successful change,” she says. “We need to be aware of the skills this experience has given us and actively use them in creating a vibrant 21st-century Europe.”

The EBD jury was impressed by the 37-year old’s commitment: “Adriana Lettrari has succeeded in giving the generation of children of German reunification a voice and making them productive for Europe,” it said by way of explanation of its choice. The prize will be awarded on the evening of 8 November in Berlin and Manuela Schwesig, Federal Minister for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth, will deliver the laudatio. The honour also makes Adriana Lettrari a candidate for the Women of Europe Award, which will be bestowed by the European Women’s Lobby and the European Movement International on 1 December 2016 in Brussels.

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