23 December 2022,
Before I offer you my Christmas wishes, let us look back at the work done during these last months. We kick-started this new parliamentary year with no less than five events commemorating the 25-year anniversary of our Federation!
Last October, we were happy to co-organise, together with our French Member organisation (CNAFC), the first international edition of the General States of Birth in Paris. We also co-organised a Spanish event on Birth rates and Family Policies in Barcelona, with the Catalonian Family Platform and the CEU Saint-Pablo Institute of Family Studies. We are grateful for these occasions of cooperation because they allow us to stress that without investing in the family, there will be no future for Europe.
Moreover, speaking about future, we cannot forget our children: we held a conference at the European Parliament on child exposure to online pornography, and later discussed child access to education in a seminar on the right to parental school choice, co-organised with the International Organisation for Freedom of Education (OIDEL), the European Council of National Associations of Independent Schools (ECNAIS) and the European Council for Steiner Waldorf Education (ECSWE).
While children are the future of Europe, it is left to parents to prepare this future, through the care they provide to their families. That is what our Board recalled in November, following the publication by the European Commission of the European Care Strategy. We regretted the one-sided solution in favour of formal childcare services at the expense of family care. The following month, we organised a joint-event with the Commission of Bishops’ Conference of the European Union (COMECE) to call attention to the often-overlooked unpaid care work performed by parents, especially mothers.
However, other topics seem to prevail in the attention of the European Commission, who proposed in early December to create a European Certificate of Parenthood. In essence, based on the freedom of movement within the EU, such an initiative would oblige Member States to recognise surrogacy, even if illegal according to their national laws. We denounced this attempt since its very first announcement, last year, and we will continue to do so in 2023.
We are committed to continuing to bring forth and amplify the voice of the family in this upcoming year 2023. Our Federation’s main work is to remind European and national decision-makers of the work of families, although discreet and silent, as the future of the world. At Christmastime, how could one not think about the similarly hidden coming of a Child that would be our Saviour?
We call on your generosity, as without it our voice is incomplete, muffled. We do not receive any public funding, and so directly depend on your donations. Please do not hesitate to support us. Our website is a good source of information to learn more about the daily work of our team in Brussels and our volunteers in Paris, Strasbourg, and Vienna, who together bring forth the voice of the family into this world,
We warmly wish you a wonderful Christmas,