COFACE Families Europe and the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The historic adoption of the Sustainable Development Agenda in September 2015, with 17 global goals at its core, was an important step for COFACE Families Europe. Since then we have strived to mainstream the global SDGs in our advocacy work in Europe through different means

1.Using our Special Consultative Status with the UN Economic and Social Council to build bridges between Europe and the global arena.

2.Organising an International conference in Amsterdam in April 2016 on ‘SDGs and Gender Equality: the role of family policies and exchange of good practices’, bringing together high-level policy-makers from across The Netherlands, Europe and the UN to take stock and formulate recommendations for the future. The result was a reflection paper on “The Role of Civil society organisations in the achievement of the SDGs”.

3.Participating in UN meetings. We presented the results of the Amsterdam conference at a UN expert group meeting in NYC in May 2016 on “Family policies and the 2030 Sustainable Development Goal Agenda”.

4.Publishing Written Statements to the UN:
2014: “Family policies towards the strengthening of social development”
2015: “The role of family organizations and the importance of family policymaking and exchange of good practices”
2016: “Strategies for the eradication of poverty to achieve sustainable development for all:  A European reality-check from COFACE Families Europe”
2017: “Making Europe’s invisible workforce visible: Results of the 2017 stocktaking study on the challenges and needs of family carers in Europe”
2018: “From global to local: supporting sustainable and resilient societies in urban and rural communities”.

5. Developing joint EU advocacy on the SDGs. We joined SDG Watch Europe, a cross-sectoral alliance of NGOs from development, environment, social, human rights and other sectors, to build partnerships and monitor the contribution of EU policies/legislation to the implementation of the SDGs. We especially lead on EU advocacy work on topics like worklife balance, disability, poverty prevention, education, gender equality, migration, digitalization, consumer protection, health and well-being, and more – all areas where EU cooperation contributes directly or indirectly to the achievement of the SDGs.

6.Advising the European Commission, as a formal member of the Multi-stakeholder platform on the SDGs. Implementing the 2030 UN Sustainable Development Goals can only be achieved with a strong involvement of all stakeholders. On 22 May 2017, the European Commission adopted a decision on setting up a high-level multi-stakeholder platform on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the EU. The platform is chaired by European Commission First Vice-President Frans Timmermans. Given COFACE Families Europe’s commitment to raising awareness about the 2030 SDGs in Europe, and given that many of our advocacy campaigns and policy actions contribute directly to European implementation of the SDGs (1, 3, 4, 5 especially), we were delighted to be one of the European civil society organisations nominated to this multi-stakeholder platform. The role of the platform is to support and advise the European Commission and all stakeholders involved on the implementation of the SDGs at EU level; to support and advise the European Commission in relation to Commission events on sustainable development; to help to prepare the selection process of an annual sustainability award; to provide a forum for exchange of experience and best practice on the implementation of the SDGs across sectors and at local, regional, national and EU level. The European Commission selected stakeholders from different backgrounds including civil society, non-governmental organisations, and the private and corporate sector (see all platform members). The platform aims to cover the social, economic and environmental aspects of sustainable development, as well as the internal and external policy dimensions. More here about the Multi-stakeholder platform and here about the European Sustainability Award- this year’s edition focuses on the theme of “Empowering people and ensuring inclusiveness and equality”. Deadline for applications: 14th September 2018.


October 2017 – COFACE Families Europe joins multi-stakeholder platform on the SDGs!