AG 2023 – FAQ
- When and where is the 2023 EEGA taking place? The assembly will take place on 24-7 October 2023 in Iasi in Romania. It will start on the morning of 24 October and will finish at midday on 27 October. This is why participants are being asked to arrive in Iasi on 23 October. The meeting will be held at the Unirea Hotel.
- What are the official languages of the 2023 EEGA? The general assembly will be held in Emmaus Europe’s three working languages – English, Spanish and French – thanks to a team of volunteer interpreters. There will be interpreting in the three languages of the plenary sessions. The workshops will either be language-specific, or interpreting will be provided in two of the languages. Working documents will be translated into the three official languages.
- Where can I find information about the 2023 EEGA? All the information about the regional assembly is available on Emmaus Europe’s website, via the members’ area, or by heading to emmaus-europe.org/ag2023-en.
- Who can take part in the 2023 EEGA? Organisations that are full or trial members of Emmaus Europe may take part in the general assembly. Any type of member may represent their group at the assembly (president, leader, companion, friend, employment access scheme employee, employee).
- What is the deadline for registering? The deadline is 30 June 2023.
- What is the maximum number of participants per group? The meeting venue’s capacity means that each group may send two representatives to the meeting. However, there is a waiting list for additional participants.
- I have been put on the waiting list. When will I find out if I can attend the 2023 EEGA? People on the waiting list will be contacted after the registration deadline (30 June 2023) in the order that their registration forms were received and depending on the number of places still available.
- How much is the registration fee? Do I need to pay it if I am on the waiting list? The registration fee is €450 per participant. This fee covers living costs in Iasi (accommodation, meals, organised visits) but does not include travel to Iasi. It should be paid as soon as possible after registering. Participants on the waiting list will also have to pay the registration fee, but may wait to receive confirmation of attendance before doing so. Based on each group's means, there is also the option of making a solidarity contribution to fund the registration fee of a representative of a low-income group.
- My group is a low-income group: how can I apply to have the fee paid? Groups evidencing that they do not have the resources to take part may apply to have the fee paid. If the request is approved, the registration fee will be reduced based on the group’s ability to pay and a minimum contribution of €50 per participant. The group must submit a request to the Emmaus Europe Regional Executive as soon as possible and by 30 June 2023 at the latest. This request must succinctly describe the group’s situation which is giving rise to the request, and the Emmaus Europe Regional Executive will ask for additional clarification if needed. A response will be provided shortly after the registration deadline (30 June 2023) based on the amount of solidarity contributions and the number of requests received. In line with the available resources, the Emmaus Europe Regional Executive will focus on encouraging as many groups as possible to take part, representing the broadest possible range of member groups.
- How do I pay the registration fee?
The registration fee can be paid by bank transfer or cheque. Remember to mention the name of your group and that you are paying the registration fee for the 2023 EEGA.
- Account: EMMAUS EUROPE
- IBAN: FR76 1027 8061 3700 0218 9490 174
- BIC/SWIFT: CMCIFR2AXXX
- CREDIT MUTUEL
- CCM de la Dhuys
- 47, boulevard Rouget de Lisle
- 93100 Montreuil, FRANCE
- Reference: Participation at the 2023 general assembly – Name of your group
- I am an elected representative or standing for election at the assembly. Am I included in the set number of participants from my group? Elected representatives coming to the end of their period of office and candidates for election are counted as being participants from their groups. They therefore need to be registered by their groups using the relevant form, be counted within the two people registered, and pay their registration fee just like the other participants.
- What is the difference between an ordinary and an extraordinary general assembly? The Ordinary General Assembly (OGA) is the “classic” assembly that is held every four years and debates most of the matters relating to the organisation’s life. The Extraordinary General Assembly (EGA) has special powers and is only convened when necessary; mainly to discuss statutory amendments. An EGA has been convened for 2023 in addition to the OGA. It will take place at the end of the day on 24 October, and its aim will be to approve the inclusion in Emmaus Europe’s statutes of the amendments made by the World Assembly to Emmaus International’s statutes, as well as some small additional amendments. The proposed amendments will be sent to all the groups before the assembly along with the working documents. The OGA will comprise all the other sessions, specifically keynote speeches, roundtables, workshops, elections, and reports of the past four years.
- What about the scheduled visits? Our time in Iași will be an opportunity to explore the city and above all learn about the work of the Emmaus group. Visits to the group’s projects are planned at the start and end of the assembly. The visit programme will be amended over the coming months, but will enable participants to visit the community house, the city centre charity shop, the Popesti rural community, and the large agricultural plot at the Belvédère. Participants will travel as a group between these sites. Visits are planned for 23 October PM and 27 October AM. These times need to be taken into account when booking your travel. For each time slot, there will be a long visit to see the Belvédère and Popesti, while a short visit will allow to discover the places in the city centre of Iași. Each visit will be organised, as necessary, in the movement’s three working languages.
- What is the schedule of the visits?
On October 23rd, the "rural" visit (Belvédère, Popesti) will be organised between 14:00 and 17:30, while the "urban" visit (city centre) will take place from 16:00 to 17:30. On October 27th they will be held respectively from 9:00 to 12:30 and from 9:00 to 10:30. Caution, this is a rough schedule, given on an indicative basis.
You may register for one of the visits on Monday and the other on Friday, but you won't be able to follow the two routes on the same day.
- What requirements have to be met in order to vote at the assembly? Each Emmaus Europe full member group, that is up to date with the payment of its 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022 membership dues, may vote at the general assembly, subject to being represented in one of the following two ways:
- If the group is able to take part in the general assembly: the group grants one of its members the power to vote on behalf of the group.
- If the group is unable to take part: the group grants a proxy vote to another group to vote on its behalf or gives permission for a blank proxy vote. Each group may hold a maximum of two proxy votes in addition to their own voting powers. Blank proxies will be handed out to the groups in attendance by the president of Emmaus Europe.
Trial member groups are invited to take part in the assembly but do not vote.
- I am unable to come to Iasi, how can I voice my opinion? In the event of being unable to attend, each organisation with voting powers can be represented by another Emmaus Europe member organisation by means of a proxy vote (see previous topic). Proxy votes need to be submitted as soon as possible to Emmaus Europe and by 30 June 2023 at the latest on logistics grounds. Naturally, to make the proxy vote more meaningful, each group is encouraged to specify on the proxy vote form its views on some of the matters being voted on, or chat beforehand with the group representing it in order to share its questions and views.
- Where can I find the voting documents? The voting powers and proxies can be downloaded from Emmaus Europe’s website: emmaus-europe.org/ag2023-en.
- Who can hold a power and a proxy vote? Anyone authorised by the group’s legal representative may hold the group’s voting powers. Any proxies held by a group are in practice held by the person authorised to vote on behalf of the group. Each group may hold a maximum of two proxies, in addition to its own voting powers. Voting powers and proxy votes may be shared out differently for the ordinary and extraordinary general assemblies.
- What is the voting procedure at the assembly? Each group in attendance or represented has a vote, and all votes have the same weight. Most votes take place by a show of hands. To this end, each authorised representative is given coloured ballot papers to indicate their choice. If 10% of the voting organisations request it, and for votes concerning individuals (elections in particular), votes are by secret ballot. The precise voting arrangements will be finalised between now and the assembly, and will be explained at the assembly. Concerns or recommendations on this matter may be sent to the EE Secretariat by 30 June.
- Which posts need to be filled?
The president and 12 Councillors of Emmaus International (CEIs) will be elected at the 2023 GA.
- President The president of Emmaus Europe is elected by the general assembly. The president is responsible for carrying out the decisions of the General Assembly, Regional Council and Regional Executive. S/he chairs these bodies. The president is elected for a two-year term of office* running from one OGA to the next. The president can be re-elected once. The president represents Emmaus Europe from a legal perspective, in front of third parties and in legal proceedings within Europe. For more information, please refer to EE's statutes.
- Councillors of Emmaus International (CEIs) The 12 Europe Region CEIs will be elected by EE’s General Assembly and will work at the regional and international levels of the movement. They are members of both their region's regional council and members of EI's board. They have a two-year term of office*, and may be re-elected once. CEIs need to have knowledge of the life of the groups, but must also have a vision of world issues and the challenges which Emmaus must face in the future. Each of the region's member organisations is only allowed to submit one candidate for election. For more information, please refer to the CEI handbook and EI's and EE's statutes.
- Who is allowed to stand for election?
Any member of an Emmaus group, regardless of their status (volunteer, companion, elected representative, employee) may stand for election for the posts of president and CEI, provided that their candidacy is approved by their home group. It is also recommended that the candidacy is supported by the national organisation, when one exists.
Regardless of the duration* of the terms of office, representatives may only fulfil the role for two terms of office:
- Members who have never been elected may therefore stand for election in 2023, and then seek re-election in 2025.
- Representatives coming to the end of their first period of office can stand for re-election for their second and final term of office.
- Elected representatives who have already undertaken several terms of office can no longer stand for election.
- How long is a term of office? Terms of office tend to last four years, and representatives can be re-elected once. However, the 2023-2025 period is a transition phase during which the Emmaus international and European assembly schedule is being switched around. As an exception, the first period of office will last for two years (2023-2025), while the second period of office (if re-elected) will run for four years (2025-2029) for the newly elected representatives.
- How do I stand for election? If you wish to stand for election, you are invited to submit your CV detailing your background and a letter explaining your vision and aims for the period of office, as well as a supporting letter from your home group. Please send these documents to the Emmaus Europe Secretariat. We also advise you to include a letter of support from your national organisation. You need to belong to an Emmaus Europe and Emmaus International member group.
- What is the deadline for standing for election? The Regional Secretariat must receive candidacies by 30 June 2023.
- How can I find out more about the governing bodies and the members that currently sit on them? For more information, please visit the Emmaus Europe website. The current members of the Regional Council are available to discuss their remits and responsibilities if you are considering standing for election. Please contact the EE Secretariat. The staff will put you in touch with the current elected representatives.
- What are the arrival and departure dates? The general assembly will start on the morning of 24 October and will finish at midday on 27 October. Participants therefore need to arrive on the eve of the GA, on 23 October, and leave once the assembly has finished, during the afternoon of 27 October.
- How should I travel to Iasi? The city of Iasi has an international airport located 7km and 15-20 minutes from the city centre and the assembly venue – the Hotel Unirea. Shuttle buses are timed to coincide with flights and take passengers to the city centre. There is also a taxi rank at the airport. The hotel offers free parking for groups wishing to travel by car. It is also possible to travel to Iasi by bus and train, but the state of the transport infrastructure makes for quite a long journey. If needed, the EE Secretariat and the Emmaus Iasi team are available to provide more information on these options.
- Can the Emmaus Europe Secretariat book/alter my travel arrangements? No. On logistics grounds, the Emmaus Europe Secretariat is unable to make travel bookings or changes to bookings.
- Is there an option of travelling to Iasi as a group? No group bookings are being made. Each participant is invited to make their own travel arrangements.
- Will someone collect me when I arrive in Iasi? And what about the return journey? No airport pickups have been arranged. Everyone is invited to travel to the meeting venue under their own steam and at their own cost. Please be aware that the local currency is the Leu*.
- What is the currency in Romania? The local currency is the Romanian Leu (plural – lei/Symbol: RON). As of early 2023, the exchange rate was roughly €1 = 5 lei. Card payments are very widespread. If you are planning to withdraw cash in the country, it is advisable to inform your bank of your travel plans to prevent your card from being frozen. You can also change your money in Romania.
- Why is it important to tell the regional secretariat about my travel arrangements? Please send the Emmaus Europe Secretariat information about your travel arrangements. This is for organizational and logistical reasons. Remember also to send us a telephone contact number or a number for the group if you are travelling in a group. This information will enable the secretariat to find out about any delays or changes to your travel arrangements, make any necessary decisions with regard to accommodation or the running of the assembly, and at all times ensure that none of the participants encounter any problems.
- Is Emmaus Europe arranging the accommodation? Emmaus Europe has arranged accommodation but solely for the 2023 EEGA period, i.e., 23-7 October 2023.
- Can I arrive before 23 September and depart after 27 September 2023? Of course. However, Emmaus Europe will only pay for accommodation for the general assembly period. You may book and pay for additional accommodation based on your travel dates.
- Where will I be staying? We will be staying at the Unirea Hotel, which is also the assembly venue.
- What will the accommodation be like? Accommodation is in en-suite twin rooms (two separate beds) with someone of the same gender. You may request to share a room; we will do our best to fulfil your request, but we cannot make any definite undertakings. For your information, in theory rooms have: bath-shower, hairdryer, safe, internet, TV, telephone, and tea and coffee making facilities. Guests may also use the hotel spa.
- Where will we eat? Meals will be provided at the Unirea Hotel, where we will also be staying and holding the meeting.
- I follow a special diet or have specific dietary requirements, what should I do? If you have a special diet or have specific requirements, please tell us on the registration form.