[About Utøya]

A place for commemoration, learning and engagement

On 22 July 2011, a right-wing Norwegian extremist killed 69 people at Utøya in Norway, most of them young people attending the Norwegian Labour Party Youth’s summer camp. The terrorist asserted that people with different cultural backgrounds cannot coexist in a society and promoted the conspiracy theory that Europe is slowly taken over by the Arabic world.

Today, Utøya carries a strong testimony of why values such as tolerance, equality and diversity cannot be taken for granted, but need to be promoted and practiced in everyday life. For this to happen there need to be more places for people to meet, not less.

Since 22 July 2011 Utøya has been rebuilt as a commemoration- and learning center, balancing the need to commemorate and the need for new life, learning and engagement for a more inclusive, democratic society.

[About Utøya]

An international meeting place

Utøya is an international meeting place and learning centre for young people fighting for democracy, human rights, peace and reconciliation – locally, nationally and globally. 

At Utøya, values such as tolerance, equality and diversity stand strong. In many countries, these values are increasingly under pressure and anti-democratic attitudes are on the rise. Violent protests, hate speech and hate crimes towards immigrants, refugees, LHBTQ and other minorities are more frequent than before. Polarization and distrust in democratic institutions and between people seems to be increasing both within countries and across borders. That is why it is instrumental to facilitate meeting places for young people to learn and collaborate on how to face these challenges, and together build strong international networks to promote democracy and human rights. That is what we do at Utøya.


Our International Programmes

"Utøya is the world-leading example in how they have dealt with being a place struck by terror and violence".
Cliff Chanin
Executive Vice President, National 9/11 Memorial & Museum
Utøya is one of the most important places in Norwegian society, and one of the places that have shaped Norwegian politics the most over the past decades. In summer, it is the most important podium for political speeches."
Jens Stoltenberg
Utøya-veteran & NATO Secretary General
"How they have enabled new life is what impressed me the most at Utøya. It's so human, it's so sincere, it's so truthful."
Oleksandra Matviichuk
Human rights lawyer, Nobel Peace Prize laureate 2022
"I am touched and grateful to witness how the young people at Utøya have resumed the joy of working for a better society and a better world."
Federica Mogherini
Former Foreign Secretary of the EU
"Utøya is a place of hope and resilience that shows that after an extremely violent event, things can become peaceful again and it is possible to rebuild".
Hajer Sharief
Libyan peace activist, Co-founder of Together We Build It, and & Winner of The Students Nobel Prize
"Utøya is a place that shape you as a human being"
Jan Egeland
General Secretary, Norwegian Refugee Council
"To me, Utøya, is a symbol of hope"
Jonas Gahr Støre
Prime minister, Norway