Today, the Council of Europe, based in Strasbourg (France) brings together, with its 47 member states, almost all the countries of the European continent. Established on the 5th May, 1949 by its 10 founding members, the Council of Europe aims to encourage the creation of a democratic and legal common in Europe, in compliance with the European Convention of Human Rights and other reference texts on the protection of the individual.
The European Youth Foundation (EYF) was established in 1972 by the Council of Europe to provide financial support for European youth activities. The EYF has an annual budget of approximately € 3 million. Since 1972, more than 300 000 young people, aged between 15 and 30 years, predominantly from the member countries, have benefitted directly from the activities supported by the EYF. Its purpose is to encourage cooperation amongst young people in Europe by providing financial support to European youth activities which aim to promote peace, understanding, cooperation and respect for the fundamental values of the Council of Europe, such as human rights, democracy, tolerance and solidarity.
The EYF thus provides financial support for the following types of activities carried out by non-governmental youth organizations and national and international platforms (as well as other non-governmental structures involved in youth work) which relate to the Council of Europe’s youth policy. These include:
- educational events which demonstrate the cultural, social and humanitarian character of Europe;
- activities aimed at strengthening peace and cooperation in Europe;
- activities to promote closer cooperation and better understanding amongst young people in Europe, particularly by developing the exchange of information;
- activities intended to stimulate mutual aid in Europe and in developing countries for cultural, educational and social services;
- studies, research and documentation of youth issues.
- International activities: Meetings of young people and youth workers in Europe, which contribute to the work of the Council of Europe’s youth sector through its subject matter, the methodology used, and with a clear European dimension (individual publications are no longer eligible).
- Workplans: a series of activities for the following year (or subsequent years), which include international activities, pilot activities and also publications (including the development of web pages). These activities should be part of the strategy or action plan of your organisation for years to come, and help support it.
- Structural concessions: intended for the general administrative costs of an international organisation or network. This is a one-off grant to regional networks in order to establish a European structure.
- Pilot activities: the main criteria of this type of activity is that it is an "intervention" and to address a specific social issue linked to the local context in which it takes place.
The EYF supports the activities of the following types of organisations and / or networks:
- International Youth NGOs: an international organisation that has members or branches in at least 7 countries of the Council of Europe. The head office or registered office of the organisation is considered separate from the branches.
- International network of Youth NGOs: an international network can be considered as such when it comprises of at least 7 youth NGOs in 7 different countries of the Council of Europe. In the registration application to the EYF an organisation needs to have at least 6 other youth NGOs in six different member countries of the Council of Europe.
- Regional network of youth NGOs: a regional network has at least 4 and no more than 6 youth NGOs in the different member states of the Council of Europe. In the application for registration, the applicant organisation will be considered if they have more than 3-5 youth NGOs in the different member states of the Council of Europe.
- NGO national youth organisation: a national youth organisation based in a member state of the Council of Europe.
- NGOs, local youth organisation: local youth organisation based in a member state of the Council of Europe.