TGEU Statement A Historic First – Funding Transgender Activism in Europe

Published: November 11, 2011

Transgender Europe is very pleased to announce the granting of significant funding from the Dutch Government and the Open Society Foundations. The aim of this initial funding is to facilitate and support the growth of the organisation to ensure that TGEU is in a position to apply for future core funding from the European Union.
The work for the next two years will target:
–          Capacity building of Transgender Europe and its member organisations
–          Advocacy to increase visibility of transgender issues within European institutions
–          Strengthening TGEU as organisation and network with increased accountability
–          Raising awareness with development and publication of resource materials
Transgender Europe offered two newly created positions of Executive Director and Policy & Capacity Officer to Dr. Julia Ehrt and Richard Köhler; both accepted the offer and resigned from their positions as co-chairs. The TGEU Steering Committee subsequently elected new co-chairs Cat McIlroy (Trans Education and Advocacy, Ireland) and Wiktor Dynarski (Trans-Fuzja, Poland) from the remaining members. Two new members have also been co-opted to the Steering Committee, Laura Leprince (HES-France) and Kemal Ördek (Pembe Hayat, Turkey). They will serve until the next elections at the 4th European Transgender Council in Dublin in July 2012.
The transgender network, established at the 1st European Transgender Council in 2005, has been operating thus far on a voluntary, unpaid basis. In recent years TGEU has grown significantly, as have the demands placed on it, highlighting the need for a reliable and professional network at the European level.
“This is a historic step. As the only European network devoted solely to transgender issues we have an important role to play. We are grateful to our funders and partners in recognizing and supporting this potential in TGEU. It also underlines the expectations towards TGEU, both from within the trans community and our partners and interlocutors at the European level. We are determined to live up to these hopes!” stated Executive Director, Julia Ehrt.
“We are happy to have found two very committed and experienced activists to fill the vacancies in the Steering Committee. We are looking forward to work together with Kemal and Laura in the Steering Committee and with Julia and Richard in their new positions ” commented Co-Chair, Cat McIlroy.

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