News

Jan 31, 2022, Independent Living

European Solidarity Corps Internship: A look back

My time with ENIL has come to an end. I was the ESC volunteer from June to December 2021. It was an eye opening and exciting experience. I got the opportunity to support the organisation of events such as ENIL’s “Freedom Surf” in September. I was also given the chance to interact with the Secretariat…

Freedom Drive Song Contest

We are just 8 months away from the 10th edition of the ENIL Freedom Drive (on 26-28 September 2022), and for this anniversary we decided to go with something special: a Freedom Drive Song Contest! The idea is simple: we are looking for songs on Independent Living, with bonus points if they are referring to…

Jan 17, 2022, Independent Living

ENIL Job Opportunities: Policy Coordinator & Project Assistant

The European Network on Independent Living (ENIL) is looking for a two new team members: a Policy Coordinator (full time, permanent contract) and a Project Assistant (part time, 10 months). Deadlines to apply are 6 February 2022 (for the Policy Coordinator) and 13 February 2022 (for the Project Assistant). 1. The Policy Coordinator will be…

Jan 12, 2022, Independent Living

In memory of Manfred Srb

Manfred Srb, one of ENIL’s co-founders at the European Parliament in Strasbourg in 1989, and a member of ENIL’s first Board passed away on 8 January 2022, a few days after his wife Annemarie Srb Rössler. In his native  Austria and other German-speaking countries, Manfred was a well-known and successful advocate for disability rights, in particular, for…

Dec 23, 2021, De-institutionalisation

ENIL Recap of 2021

As we near the end of the year, we wish to take an opportunity to reflect on what we have done, and highlight other memorable moments. Instead of the usual Newsletter, we will take you through the year 2021 at the European Network on Independent Living. We begin with some facts and move on to…

Dec 03, 2021, Europe in Action

Support ENIL’s Petition to Demand Closure of Institutions!

Brussels, 3 December 2021 –  The European Network on Independent Living – ENIL has followed the use of European Union (EU) funds for more than a decade. We know that EU funds are sometimes used to build new institutions or to refurbish institutions. We also know that EU funds are being used to transfer disabled…

Nov 30, 2021, De-institutionalisation

EU Funds for Our Rights Campaign Meets in November

The annual meeting of our EU Funds for Our Rights Campaign took place on 15 November. Due to the situation with COVID-19, the meeting took place online, like the last year. The meeting was attended by representatives from 11 EU Member States: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain, and…

Nov 30, 2021, Independent Living

Boarding Denied by Ryanair

My name is Laura Alčiauskaitė and I work as a TRIPS Project coordinator at ENIL. This October, 2021 I was planning to go to the HUMANIST conference where I was supposed to deliver a presentation about our project.  As I’m based in Lithuania, I booked the flights from Kaunas to Rhodes Island and a return…

Nov 30, 2021, De-institutionalisation

ENIL and Partners Discuss Housing & Independent Living

On the 24th November, ENIL held a webinar on accessible housing, an issue of major importance for us. It took place on Zoom and was recorded through ENIL’s YouTube channel. The event was introduced by ENIL’s Deputy Director Ines Bulic Cojocariu, and our first speaker was Thiandi Groof, a self-advocate from the Netherlands, who spoke…

Nov 30, 2021, De-institutionalisation

My Takeaways from the ERA Conference on Independent Living

I had the privilege of attending the European Law Academy (ERA) Annual conference on the rights of persons with disabilities from 17th – 19th November 2021. The main topic was the right to independent living, with presentations on disability human rights law, relating to a few different areas such as deinstitutionalisation (DI) and the right…

Nov 30, 2021, Independent Living

Meet Our Volunteer Melike!

I am Melike, a new volunteer at ENIL. I was born and raised in Beşiktaş, Istanbul and moved to Brussels as of September 2021. I completed my undergraduate and graduate education at Istanbul Bilgi University Sociology and Cultural Studies programs. I took part in various projects and researches for 10 years in the Center for…

Oct 30, 2021, Independent Living

Uloba celebrates: 30 years fighting for equality!

In 1991, five disabled Norwegians, three woman and two men, gained freedom and independency in their lives. How did they utilize this freedom? To ensure thousands of others the same possibilities through importing and developing citizen-led personal assistance in Norway. It is this entrepreneurial effort through three decades that we are now celebrating! On October…

Oct 30, 2021, De-institutionalisation

Freedom Surf: Loud and Proud Online!

Between the 21st and 23rd of September, ENIL held online the Freedom Surf conference, which replaced our usual flagship event of the Freedom Drive, that was postponed due to COVID-19 and the restrictions surrounding the pandemic. We had numerous events each day, such as meeting with ENIL and ENIL Youth Network boards, workshops, and interesting…

Oct 30, 2021, Independent Living

Games and Lessons: Reflections on My Time in Genoa

I had the privilege of representing ENIL in Genoa (Genova), Italy recently. To be more specific, the small town of Santa Margherita. A picturesque town that really showcased the beauty and wealth of the Northern part of Italy. We were hosted by the Italian organisation AFIDO. I went with a group of other disabled people…

Help us plan the 2022 Freedom Drive!

At the European Network on Independent Living – ENIL, we started planning the next Freedom Drive, scheduled to take place from the 26th – 28th September 2022, in Brussels. However, whereas usually we would plan it with the assumption that many of our members and allies will take part, we feel we have to do…

Oct 18, 2021, De-institutionalisation

In memory of Kapka Panayotova (1956 – 2021)

The European Network on Independent Living – ENIL learned, with deep sorrow, that our former President and Board member Kapka Panayotova, passed away suddenly on Thursday, 14 October 2021, at the age of 65. Kapka served as a Board member at ENIL for several terms and was the President until standing down during the General…

Oct 05, 2021, De-institutionalisation

ENIL Welcomes Concluding Observations on the Initial Report of France

France was reviewed by the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Committee) in August 2021. Meetings with the French DPOs took place at the beginning of August. Our French members, Coordination Handicap et Autonomie – Vie Autonome France, submitted a written contribution prior to the review. In its Concluding Observations (COs), the…

Freedom Drive 2022 … Here We Come!

The Freedom Drive began in Strasbourg in 2003, at the initiative of late Martin Naughton, the Irish Independent Living pioneer. Every two years, it brought together Independent Living activists and allies from across Europe, first in Strasbourg, then in Brussels. In 2019, when the last Freedom Drive took place, over 200 people came together for…