Emmaus Europe

Circular economy / The environment 

Our values

One of Emmaus’ basic principles is living off the fruit of our labours and regaining dignity through work.

In the communities the companions regain their dignity by working on reuse initiatives. The funds raised from this work covers not only the costs of food and housing but also allow the communities to lead solidarity initiatives to support those “who are suffering the most”.

Fixing Objects in order to Fix Yourself

In the Emmaus groups and get-back-to-work schemes our reuse work provides a second life to both the objects collected and to the people involved in these activities. Often this helps the companions to take the first steps on the road to rebuilding themselves.

Emmaus is now one of the main stakeholders of the European social economy. The range of our income-generating activities is constantly growing (farming, solidarity food shops, zero waste restaurants, upcycling, etc.) but our initiatives always strive to help people who have had a tough time in life to rebuild.

Political Campaigning and Working as part of a Network

Emmaus Europe is part of the European reuse network RREUSE. Our priority is to reuse rather than recycle wherever possible as reuse extends the lifespan of objects without having an impact on the environment. We also work with our partners, however, to reduce ultimate waste as much as possible.

Defend the social economy stakeholders

We also work with RREUSE to defend the key role of social economy stakeholders in the reuse and recycling sector. This sector is becoming an interesting market for non-social economy companies whereas we use its potential to support our social action and our solidarity initiatives.

Our various stances

European Union

Emmaus at the European Parliament

On 31st January, Emmaus Europe organised a commemoration of the 70th anniversary of Abbé Pierre’s radio appeal. To mark the occasion, we took a piece of Emmaus straight to the heart of the European Parliament in Brussels, by recreating an Emmaus salon and setting up an exhibition on Abbé Pierre.

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Tackling Poverty / Solidarity

Poland

An exchange of best practices on working with wood: feedback on the event

In mid-September several European groups met in Krakow, Poland, to talk about the topic of wood – how to renovate wooden objects, how to re-use them, sanding techniques, etc.

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Circular economy / The environment 

Netherlands

Knitting together a social and circular future for textiles

An interview with Yvette Gumbs, the national delegate for the Netherlands. Yvette represented Emmaus Europe at the conference organised by RREUSE on the urgent topic of textile waste and the impact that this has on the fashion industry.

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Circular economy / The environment 

Netherlands

Back to activism with the Emmaus in the Netherlands!

Lately the Emmaus groups in the Netherlands have been acting more together and locally to raise the public awareness on different issues (migrations, overconsumption) and with different partners. We met with the new National Delegate for the Netherlands, Yvette Gumbs, to ask her all about it. 

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Tackling Poverty / Solidarity

France

Emmaus Mundo: a green, open, multi-activity sales area!

The renovation of a sales area, a key space in any Emmaus group, may represent an opportunity to launch new projects. We met with Joël from Emmaus Mundo and Nicolas from Bâtisseurs d’Instants (Builders of Moments).

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Circular economy / The environment 

European Union

European Social Economy Summit in Strasbourg

Emmaus Europe held a roundtable with its circular economy partners to coincide with the release of the European Action Plan for the Social Economy presented at the 5-6 May summit.

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Circular economy / The environment 

Belgium

Emmaus Ghlin, a solidarity carpentry initiative: Holy-Wood

This initiative began in the Belgian community when people decided to look for ways to bring added value to wood that they couldn’t sell in the shop. The Holy-Wood project is aimed at providing a second life for scrap wood as well as offering a local, ethical and solidarity-focused alternative to our customers.

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Circular economy / The environment 

Romania

Emmaus Iasi: an ingenious way of reusing old desks

Within Emmaus we’re great at adapting objects and reusing them in all kinds of innovative ways. Another great idea has recently emerged within the movement: a Romanian group has made two bedrooms in a hangar out of old desks!

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Circular economy / The environment