Council of Europe
IFSW Europe has designated representatives for the Council of Europe. The Council of Europe, based in Strasbourg (France), now covers virtually the entire European continent, with its 47 member countries. Founded on 5 May 1949 by 10 countries, the Council of Europe seeks to develop throughout Europe common and democratic principles based on the European Convention on Human Rights and other reference texts on the protection of individuals. The primary aim of the Council of Europe is to create a common democratic and legal area throughout the whole of the continent, ensuring respect for its fundamental values: human rights, democracy and the rule of law.
European Social Platform
IFSW Europe has been a member of the European Social Platform since April 2009.
The Platform of European Social NGOs (Social Platform) is the alliance of representative European federations and networks of non-governmental organisations active in the social sector.
The Social Platform and its members are committed to the advancement of the principles of equality, solidarity, non discrimination and the promotion and respect of fundamental rights for all within Europe and in particular the European Union.
The Social Platform promotes social justice and participatory democracy by voicing the concerns of member organisations.
ENSACT, European Network for Social ACTion
IFSW Europe joined ENSACT in 2006.
ENSACT is a European network of professional associations, faculties of social work and social education and national councils of social welfare.
The main activities of ENSACT shall be: voicing its members on the European level in taking part in policy making processes; to come up with statements and studies; bringing the members together at joint European conferences and expert meetings; providing the members with information on common issues, activities and documents from the different partners.
ENSACT stands for professional quality. It fosters social professionals, teachers, lecturers, trainers and social service providers in innovating and strengthening their practices, concepts and theories.
ENSACT gives a voice to social professionals, teachers, lecturers, trainers and services in Europe: directed at the Council of Europe, European Union and European Parliament.
ENSACT promotes consistency and effectiveness of professional qualifications and quality of social services and policies across Europe, including work on the Bologna process and the EU processes for mutual recognition of qualifications.
ENSACT integrates the efforts of partners in a synergistic way, aiming at optimising the activities of every partner and reaching goals individually and jointly. We draw upon the richness of traditions embedded in social professional education and social professional practice throughout Europe.
ENSACT intends to develop more effective contact with service user organizations on a national and European level.
ENSACT will integrate the interests of service users into their policies and recommendations.
ENSACT consists of six European Associations of which IFSW Europe is one:
EASSW, European Association of Schools of Social Work
EASSW is a European association of institutions of social work education, organisations supporting social work education and social work educators. Its mission is to promote social development and develop high quality education, training and knowledge for social work practice, social services, and social welfare policies in Europe.
FESET, Formation d’Educateurs Sociaux Européens/European Social Educator Training
FESET is a European Association of Training Centres for Socio-Educational Care Work. The aims of FESET are: to promote the education and training for socio-educational purposes; to participate in programmes of different European bodies; to ensure that the training centres be represented at the institutions of the European Union, the Council of Europe as well as other international organisations; to encourage exchanges and understanding between training centres in the Member States of the EU, in the Member States of the Council of Europe and in other European States; to promote terms of mutual recognition of diplomas.
FICE, Fédération Internationale des Communautés Educatives
FICE Europe consists of member organisations (sections), which are represented in almost all European countries. Generally they include establishments such as residential homes and other institutions or services operating in the field of childcare, schools, workshops for disabled people, education and training centres for young people in need of support, training centres for professional staff. The member organisations are also admitting individual members that come from the social field or research establishments.
AIEJI, International Association of Social Educators
AIEJI unites social educators from all countries and promotes quality practice that seeks to ensure the best for people served by the profession.
AIEJI emphasizes and promotes the philosophy of social education and its uniqueness in being actively involved in partnership with clients, working with them, not only individually but in groups, families, communities and the social environments towards the development of their strengths and in resolving personal, social and community difficulties.
ICSW-International Council on Social Welfare
ICSW is a global non-governmental organization which represents a wide range of national and international member organisations that seek to advance social welfare, social development and social justice. ICSW’s basic mission is to promote forms of social and economic development which aim to reduce poverty, hardship and vulnerability throughout the world, especially amongst disadvantaged people. It strives for recognition and protection of fundamental rights to food, shelter, education, health care and security. It believes that these rights are an essential foundation for freedom, justice and peace. It seeks also to advance equality of opportunity, freedom of self-expression and access to human services.
FRA, European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights
IFSW Europe was admitted to the EU Fundamental Rights Platform (FRP) in February 2010.
FRA is an advisory body of the European Union (EU). It was established in 2007 by the EU and is based in Vienna, Austria.
The FRA helps to ensure that the fundamental rights of people living in the EU are protected. It does this by collecting evidence on the situation of fundamental rights across the EU and using this evidence to provide advice on how to improve the situation.
The platform is a network of NGO’s committed to challenging human rights abuse and injustice. FRA is an invaluable source of research and information about human rights developments relevant to our practice as social workers.
EAPN, European Anti-Poverty Network
IFSW Europe joined EAPN membership in June 2012.
EAPN is an independent network of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and groups involved in the fight against poverty and social exclusion in the Member States of the European Union, established in 1990.
EAPN is one of the founder members of the Social Platform and has a long history of successful campaigning and lobbying on behalf of impoverished and excluded individuals and groups.
A high proportion of the difficulties of social work service users arise directly from poverty or give rise to it and our profession needs to be formally linked to networks of individuals and organisations committed to securing a more equal society, therefore we encourage member organisations to establish local links with EAPN networks in their own countries and to support EAPN’s campaigns.
EURORDIS, European Organisation for Rare Diseases
IFSW Europe and EURORDIS agreed to work together since 2013 to promote and develop awareness on rare diseases and the need for social care provision for people living with a rare disease and their families as well as on the important role of social workers in supporting people of all ages at times of crisis and protecting children and vulnerable adults from neglect and abuse.
The European Organisation for Rare Diseases is a patient-driven alliance of Patient Organisations and individuals active in the field of Rare Diseases.
The Objectives of EURORDIS are to build a strong pan-European community of people living with rare diseases, to be this community’s voice at the European level and directly or indirectly to fight against the impact of rare diseases by improving access to information, to services, to diagnosis, to treatment and care, and by promoting research and the exchange of good practices. It was founded in 1997 and is supported by its members and by the AFM-Telethon, the European Commission, corporate foundations and the health industry.
EURORDIS represents 695 patient organisations in 63 countries providing a voice to the approximately 30 million people living with rare diseases in Europe alone.
In January 2016 a Memorandum Of Understanding (PDF) was signed between the European Organisation for Rare Diseases (EURORDIS) and the International Federation of Social Workers Europe (IFSW Europe).