60 years of COFACE Families Europe – 30 Key milestones
1958 – COFACE is born as a separate arm of the International Union of Family Organisations, following the creation of the European Economic Community. In this context, Families were considered as ‘consuming units’.
1979 – For the first European Parliament elections, COFACE adopts a declaration calling for the rights of all families: “The family is a biological, emotional, educational, cultural, social, consuming unit… It is necessary both to the happiness and self-actualisation of individuals, and to the balanced development of society”.
2005 – COFACE sets up a European project on reconciling work and family life, with a focus on “Men in Families” and the need for men to be more involved in the care, upbringing and education of their children.
2006 – COFACE joins discussions on Europe’s demographic future and solidarity between generations, through active participation in the “European Alliance for Families” and the “High Level Group on Demography”.
2009 – Bridge-building between research and policy becomes a key area of COFACE action, through a first structural partnership with universities in the FP7-funded “Family Platform”, a project on evolving family patterns and contemporary family life.
2010 – COFACE co-organises a European conference with Belgian Presidency of the EU on social inclusion of families, in the framework of the European Year of Combating Poverty and Social Exclusion 2010.
2012 – Links are strengthened between COFACE and the United Nations through cooperation on the International Day of Families and the publication of “The Family Dimension of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities”.
2015 – COFACE builds knowledge and consensus on the importance of a great start in life for all children through high-quality, accessible and affordable early childhood education care which adopts a two-generation approach.
2015 – COFACE launches the #ToysAndDiversity campaign on social media showcasing good and bad examples of toy advertising for children, which led to a study of toy catalogues across 9 countries published in 2016.
2016 – COFACE launches the “Compendium on Financial Inclusion”, a publication compiling good practices, providing independent advice and advocating for financial inclusion and a financial system at the service of Europe’s citizens.
2016 – COFACE, with official special consultative status at the UN ECOSOC, joins the discussion on the Sustainable Development Goals with a conference on the SDGs and Gender equality. In 2017, COFACE joins the multi-stakeholder platform on the implementation of the #SDGs in the EU.
2017 – COFACE Families Europe actively participates in shaping the European Pillar of Social Rights as a useful social policy framework for all families in Europe. Persons with disabilities, Family carers, Work-Life Balance, Financial Inclusion, Community-based services.
2017 – After several years of COFACE advocacy, the European Commission proposes an EU Work-Life Balance Directive. COFACE calls for swift adoption of the directive as first step towards setting minimum standards across Europe.
2017 – COFACE conducts a major European data collection to map the needs and challenges of family carers in Europe, gathering 1000+ testimonies. The resulting study “Who cares?” is presented in the European Parliament.