To maximise the benefits of our work in Brussels, we focus our attention on three key pillars :
- Have an impact over European policy in the areas of interest to us;
- Stay informed and update our members and partners regarding the latest developments;
- Foster innovation at all levels of service provision throughout Europe.
Currently, EASPD is implementing its 2014-2017 multiannual strategy "Reaching Out".
1. HAVE AN IMPACT
As the voice of support services for disabled people in the EU since 1996, we have developed over the years both long-lasting and constructive partnerships with organisations and institutions throughout Europe, such as with the European Parliament, the European Commission and the Council of Europe.
These long-term partnerships allow EASPD to have a say in European policy developments with the aim to ensure that social services can thrive and work to support disabled people in the best possible way.
Being the representative organisation of over 12,000 service providers throughout Europe, it is our role to make sure that our partners are well aware of the expertise and know-how that our organisation can bring to them; especially in terms of knowing the effects their policy-making is having on the welfare of those most in need, and in the case of EASPD, persons with disabilities.
The organisation of events on a wide-variety of policy areas is also a key means in which to have an impact over European policy. For this reason, EASPD regularly organises seminars and policy events, which gathers experts from all over Europe, as well as from the European institutions, to network and exchange views on the policy areas of interest to EASPD.
You may find a full list of our partnerships here.
2. STAY INFORMED
The exchange of information is another key factor in the work we do in Brussels and goes in both directions: on the one hand informing our members and on the other providing our partners with current realities throughout Europe.
Towards our members, we share up-to-date information regarding developments at European and international level, whilst we also explain how such developments can impact on legislation and service provision at their own respective levels; be it local, regional or national.
Our members also provide us with key information regarding the issues they find most relevant to their everyday work throughout Europe. This allows EASPD to provide detailed information to our partners regarding the current realities service providers are encountering throughout Europe and thus attempt to push European policy in the right direction.
For this reason, EASPD regularly publishes both communication and policy publications available to its members and partners through position papers, press releases, newsflashes, newsletters, studies and annual reports.
3. BE PART OF INNOVATION
Our third key activity is to work for the promotion of innovation in our field. We have been successful in providing our members with opportunities to develop EU-financed research projects, either by coordinating them or alternatively by being a partner. As such, EASPD has developed over the years an expertise in developing successful projects and uses this know-how to support and help its members in accessing such opportunities; through, for example, project development workshops.
EASPD also provides its members with an opportunity to learn from one another and exchange best practices on developing key new responses to continuously evolving social needs and challenges.
Furthermore, to unify and strengthen the voice of service providers at national level and thus improve their ability to create partnerships for projects, we are committed to sharing our network and experiences with service providers and their umbrella associations in all EU Member States and accession countries. Since 2005, EASPD has organised, in collaboration with local partner organisations, a number of provider forums, which have significantly improved the structure of social services providers throughout Europe.
EASPD's MULTIANNUAL STRATEGY 2014-2017
Every four years, the Board decides upon a set of Strategic Choices upon which are based EASPD’s activities during that timeframe. The Strategic Choices follow the assumption that all of EASPD’s actions are dedicated to the continuous improvement of services and/or changes in service delivery to help realise the full implementation of the UN CRPD. However, at the same time, EASPD also recognises that across Europe the very survival of existing services is under threat because of the economic crisis and the political emphasis on austerity.
EASPD's new strategic orientation - "Reaching out strategy – to build an inclusive society" - introduces our new approach designed to focus on further reaching out towards persons with disabilities, our members and allies as well as towards other stakeholders such as the European institutions. The strategic decisions and measures we have decided to implement will also be converted into concrete actions in our annual action plans for 2014 to 2017.
Through this document, EASPD has once again positioned social service providers as enablers of human rights for persons with disabilities.
To view the document, please click here.