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The Value of Europe

Anna writes about her experience as a new European citizen

Written by Anna Hollnagel and posted in opinion

This is an opinion of a young person and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of It is one person's experience and may be different for you. If you'd like to write something for please contact

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Everyone knows the benefits of the European Union which I do not have to go into in detail. What I can tell you however is that here and there I come across people who take those benefits for granted. They complain that their country has lost its sovereignty or cannot govern itself as it would wish to; that there is some sort of unfairness, maybe in monetary policy or the refugee situation.

Being born in Armenia and just recently becoming an EU citizen I could not fulfil my dream of work and travel across Europe when studying at university. Back in those days I could not go and visit my dream country, Ireland, the country with its world-famous Guinness, beautiful music and famous friendliness of its people. There is that restriction for Non-EU citizens called the Schengen Agreement, the impact of which I felt the most.

Earlier in 2017 I visited Ireland for the first time and was not disappointed. I fell in love from the first time I touched Irish ground. Every detail when talking to people, breathing in their way of living and that warmth and kindness is second to none. I could not feel more happy and grateful about the European Union`s idea of free movement of people, goods and capital.

Having that opportunity to culturally exchange with so many countries and get to know the diverse and unique history of each one of them makes me feel free and happy. Moreover, I strongly believe that only a united European Union can ensure safety in times of terrorism and prosperity in a hard-contested global economy.

Let us continue working on a democratic and strong EU so our descendants will continue benefiting from it the way we do now. It is highly important, especially in times of Brexit.

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Published April 19th, 2017
Tags eu hub eu europe european union brexit politics opinion
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Need to get in touch with your local MEP? Simply click your constituency below and we will give you the MEPs for your area and their contact details.

Select your constituency - Dublin Midlands North-West South

MEPs in Dublin Constituency

Lynn Boylan

01 873 6554


58 Parnell Square, Dublin 1.

Nessa Childers

01 296 2263


11 Glenard Hall, Clonskeagh, Dublin 14

Brian Hayes

01 209 6548


6 Main Street, Donnybrook, Dublin 4

MEPs in Midlands North West Constituency

Matt Carthy

042 967 4001


10 Monaghan Street, Carrickmacross, Co. Monaghan

Luke 'Ming' Flanagan

094 962 2710


Priory House, Barrack Street, Castlerea, Co. Roscommon

Marian Harkin

071 914 5890


28 Emmet Place, Union Street, Sligo

Mairead McGuinness

041 685 4633


Mentrim, Drumconrath, Navan, Co. Meath

MEPs in South Constituency

Deirdre Clune

1890 989 533


74 South Mall, Cork

Seán Kelly

085 125 5263


European Parliament, ASP 08F353, rue Wiertz 60, B-1047 Brussels.

Liadh Ni Riada

01 872 6100


20 Commons Road, Blackpool, Cork

Brian Crowley

021 489 6433

Maryborough Lodge, Maryborough Hill, Douglas, Cork

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