10th ENIL Freedom Drive
From the 26th – 28th September, ENIL will hold its 10th Freedom Drive in Brussels. The overall theme of the 2022 Freedom Drive will be “50 Years of Independent Living” and it will be dedicated to Kapka Panayotova, our former President and the founder of Independent Living in Bulgaria, who passed away suddenly in October last year.
Freedom Drive is one of the key campaigns of the European Network on Independent Living (ENIL) – held every two years since 2003. It provides supporters of the Independent Living Movement with the unique opportunity to meet MEPs and promote human rights issues, as well to share experiences and ideas with colleagues from around Europe. Freedom Drive has developed over the years and is now a large 3-day event, bringing together up to 300 people. It has a rich programme, including workshops, a hearing in the European Parliament, a conference with sessions on multiple topics, a meeting of the ENIL Youth Network and the culmination – a noisy march to the European Parliament where Freedom Drivers meet with MEPs. The first 6 editions of the Freedom Drive took place in Strasbourg, until 2015, when for the first time the location was changed to Brussels for strategic reasons.
The Freedom Drive is open to disabled people, independent living activists, their friends and allies. Participants are responsible for covering their own travel and accommodation expenses, but ENIL provides fundraising tips in advance of the event, as well as advice about finding accessible accommodation.