For the period 2013-2020 EFIL Strategic goal in Advocacy is to engage in overall advocacy of Intercultural Learning on the European level and lobby to remove structural obstacles to youth exchanges, meanwhile confirming and strengthening EFIL’s position as a key player in providing Intercultural Learning opportunities and ensuring EFIL’s involvement in strategic alliances of interest to the AFS core business.

The main focus of EFIL’s advocacy efforts is on Intercultural Learning and its links with the wider field of Global Education, with additional topics: Active Citizenship and Volunteering.  Key strategy is to stay up to date with European developments in these fields and influence decisions in the interest of the Federation, through participation in public consultations, submitting positions on legal documents and contributing to the EU Structured Dialogue with young people on youth policy opened to European youth organisations since 2011. In order to be recognised as a relevant actor when influencing policy, EFIL links its activities with research (e.g. Forum on Intercultural Learning and Exchanges), and submits papers for conferences and publications as evidence-based contributions to youth policy connected to Intercultural Learning.

More operational matters that create the right conditions for the former include recognition of study periods abroad, visa issues regarding youth mobility, recognition of non-formal learning and volunteering, providing funding for projects involving youth organisations.

EFIL takes part in several relevant stakeholder groups and platforms, and selectively networks with like-minded organisations to create strategic alliances and make sure its priorities are addressed at the appropriate level, this way influencing policy-making at European level and mainstreaming youth exchanges as a recognized best practice for Intercultural Learning. EFIL’s main external partners are the European Youth Forum (YFJ) and the Lifelong Learning Platform.

Lobbying and networking further improves visibility, credibility and EFIL’s reputation within Europe, hereby profiling itself as a respected, professional organisation with much wanted expertise.

For an efficient follow-up, a support infrastructure is in place, including the Advocacy Fellowship programme for volunteers to become Advocacy Fellows through a blended learning journey, the Pool of Advocacy Fellows, the Advocacy Steering Group made by the Fellows representing EFIL towards institutions and Platforms.  Here you can access an overview of the structure and learning programme.

#RecogniseStudyAbroad Campaign

The objective of the campaign #RecogniseStudyAbroad is to raise awareness among policy-makers and educational stakeholders about the lack of recognition of long-term pupil exchanges.

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Advocacy Platforms

EFIL is a member of several formal platforms at European level through which we put forward the added value of youth exchanges and the AFS volunteering reality.
Youth Forum for web

European Youth Forum

he European Youth Forum (YFJ) is the platform of youth organisations in Europe. Representing 100 youth organisations, both National Youth Councils and International Non-Governmental Youth Organisations

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LLL for Web

Lifelong Learning Platform

The Lifelong Learning Platform is an umbrella that gathers 40 European organisations active in the field of education, training and youth. Currently these networks represent more than 50.000 educational institutions and associations covering all sectors of formal, non-formal and informal learning.

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Key Competences Network on School Education

KeyCoNet is a growing network of more than 100 organisations focused on improving the implementation of key competences in school education.

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INGO Conference of the Council of Europe

EFIL has participatory status to the Internation Non-Governmental Organisations (INGO) Conference of the Council of Europe.

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EESC Liaison Group

EESC is the European Economic and Social Committee, a consultative body of the European Union, representing a wide range of national civil society organisations.

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Have your say!

EFIL takes part to the EU structured dialogue with young people to:

  • ensure that the opinion of EFIL and its volunteers  is taken into account in defining youth-related policies of the European Union.
  • offer AFS volunteers the opportunity of being active European Citizens and voice their opinions on relevant EU policies that have a direct impact on them as young people and the work of their organisation.
All you need to know
YFJ GA_European Youth Forum

How to get involved with Advocacy:

The European Pool of Representatives

In order to be able to grasp them fully and represent the views and experience of our AFS members in the best way, and to reach out to external partners and developments, EFIL has a committed group of people involved in advocacy work at European and international level and represent EFIL/AFS externally.

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