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We give a voice to young people to promote a change of narratives and contribute to a culture of understanding, peace and dialogue in the Euro-Mediterranean region

This programme creates spaces for intercultural encounters between young people in order to promote exchanges of experiences and ideas between peers, identify shared values in the region and transcend those stereotypes that tear us apart. By doing so, it aims to equip young people with tools so they can play a relevant role in future societies and actively promote the values of diversity and co-existence in the Euro-Mediterranean area. 

The programme includes regular youth-to-youth debates on the burning issues in the Euro-Mediterranean area, including violent extremism, hate speech and migration.  

It also features the youth contest “A Sea of Words”, organised in collaboration with the Anna Lindh Foundation and its national networks. The competition is open to young people between the ages of 18 and 30 from the Euromed area. It encourages intercultural dialogue and the exchange of knowledge through the stories about experiences and concerns expressed by young people. Since 2008, each contest has revolved around a different theme, such as gender equality, sustainable development, democracy and citizenship, radicalisation and climate change. 

Through short stories, young people have the opportunity to freely express ideas, perceptions, concerns and hopes. In this way, different local and international traditions are reflected. During the 13th year of the contest, around 3,000 works were received, with a good balance between the North (47%) and South (53%) of the Mediterranean. An international jury selects between 10 and 20 texts every year, and offers the finalists the opportunity to take part in an intercultural experience in Barcelona. This exchange includes literary workshops, cultural visits and the awards ceremony, featuring prominent figures from different fields. 

The 2014 edition

Young People Combating Hate Speech Online

The seventh literary contest A Sea of Words is held again in 2014 to help foster dialogue between peoples and the exchange of knowledge and experiences between different local and international traditions. This year’s contest addresses a theme that values equality and dignity as well as human rights and diversity. A campaign against hate speech online. Young people must be aware that we can only build a society where the expression of universal and shared values of freedom and modernity are born out of respect for our neighbours, tolerance and acceptance of diversity.

The richness resulting from the existence of different cultures and traditions in the Euro-Mediterranean area must be preserved as one of the most valuable heritages surrounding us, and strengthening greater knowledge of them has to be one of the channels to nurture respect and the language of tolerance and understanding in each of its countries and regions.

Key information

The call was closed on 15 June 2014

We have received 189 stories written by youths from 31 Euro-Mediterranean countries

The contest welcomes stories written in any of the official languages of the Euro-Mediterranean countries:
Albania, Algeria, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Latvia, Lebanon, Libya, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Malta, Mauritania, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, The Netherlands, Palestine, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey and United Kingdom.

Winners announced

(1st Prize)

Seven Years in Dreamland

Martyna Chrześcijańska. Poland

(2nd Prize)

Brokeback Suicides

Mladen Grgić. Montenegro

(3rd Prize)

Love Comes from the North

Sayed Ismail. Palestine

Other finalists

The Day of the Planet Earth (the 22nd of April 2014). Earth and Law, Culture and Dog’s Poo

Amela Sarajlić. Bosnia and Herzegovina

A Summer Morning

Slavena Zaharieva. Bulgaria

Love and Hate Conflict

Mahmoud El Mohr. Egypt


Ilias Kolokouris. Greece

Ode to the Border

Giulio Pitroso. Italy

The Virtual Window

Wissam Emad Mo’hd Alazzam. Jordan

My Internet Life

Agnija Kazuša. Latvia

Little Chapel

Jarosław Macnar. Poland

A Message from the Future

Petra Iuliana Pintelei. Romania

The Dark City

Martí Vilagut. Spain


Amri Awatef. Tunisia

A Dream on the Border

Sahar Ammar. Tunisia

Co-organised with