Emmaus Europe

Tackling Poverty / Solidarity

Our values

The Emmaus movement aims to tackle poverty through direct action and by fighting the causes of poverty with awareness raising initiatives, advocacy work and solidarity.

Solidarity Ragpickers and Builders

From the very start of our movement Emmaus’ initiatives focused on two main areas: welcoming the homeless and launching income-generating activities to help these people find dignity and live off the fruit of their labours (mainly through activities involving reuse and recycling).

The Emmaus groups offer solidarity using the profits from their activities, helping others to avoid falling into poverty. The groups regularly support other associations by donating equipment or by making a financial contribution. Some of our volunteer-led groups (mainly in northern Europe) focus almost entirely on international solidarity initiatives.

Welcome and reinsertion

The most commonly-known and most widespread, in Europe at least, of the different types of Emmaus groups is the Emmaus community. This model allows people who have been excluded from society to take back control of their lives by living and working together as a group. The communities also offer solidarity to those who are suffering the most.

A multi-facetted welcome

But the Emmaus groups have created many different ways of providing welcome to those who need it: temporary shelter, more permanent housing, get-back-to-work schemes, etc.

What these different initiatives have in common is that the person being welcomed will always have an active role and that the group will always adapt the activities to the needs of the person in question.

Political Campaigning and Working as part of a Network

In order to better tackle the causes of poverty Emmaus Europe has joined the European Anti-Poverty Network (EAPN).

Alongside such partners we can speak out at the European Union, ensuring that the voice of people living in poverty situations is heard by such institutions. The goal of these efforts is to influence policy-making in order to reduce the level of poverty in Europe.

Housing first

Emmaus defends a policy of long-term housing for people in street situations. On this matter the Abbé Pierre Foundation, named after the founder of Emmaus, leads very active advocacy work in France and also provides funding for projects led by the Emmaus groups, notably in Europe. On the European level the foundation works alongside FEANTSA (the European Federation of National Organisations Working with the Homeless).

Solidarity Action on the European Level

Emmaus Europe coordinates the solidarity initiatives led on the European level by sending the groups an annual call for projects for any initiatives which may require support. Other interested European groups who can afford to do so then provide a financial contribution to these projects.

The Pooling of Resources

Emmaus Europe also serves as an intermediary between groups which collect a lot of material (furniture, objects, clothing, etc.) and those who only collect little, helping to redistribute our resources so that all of our groups can develop their activities.

Our various stances

Ukraine

Emmaus Oselya: two years of war, two years of resistance!

Russia’s large-scale invasion of Ukraine began on 24th February 2022. For the last two years the Emmaus Oselya group has been putting up daily resistance in Lviv with its own weapons: solidarity, mutual support, and unconditional welcome of vulnerable people; along with ideas and initiatives to keep helping those who suffer most.

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Tackling Poverty / Solidarity

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

France

Emmaus Grenoble creates its own work integration scheme: the Lucie Coutaz Workshop

The French community, Emmaus Grenoble, has inaugurated its new work integration scheme aimed at sorting, reusing and recycling textiles donated to the organisation.

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Tackling Poverty / Solidarity

France

Tackling digital exclusion

Emmaus Connect is a French group created in 2013, which promotes digital inclusion for people experiencing social and digital exclusion. We met up with Lilan Criscuolo, who is in charge of international partnerships, to hear what she has to say about future plans for Europe.

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Tackling Poverty / Solidarity

Three European projects supported by the Abbé Pierre Foundation!

Every year Emmaus Europe works with Emmaus International to present projects put forward by the groups in Europe (excluding France) to the Abbé Pierre Foundation. The projects must be focused on the topic of improving housing conditions. 

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Tackling Poverty / Solidarity

Romania

The birth of the new Emmaus Romania Federation!

Thanks to this shared body the three groups will be able to overcome the geographical distance that separates them in order to better promote Emmaus’ values and to work together to ensure that their voice is heard on the national level.

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Tackling Poverty / Solidarity

Georgia: the “balcony of Europe” and a group which is now ready to join the Emmaus movement!

The vitality of our movement can be measured by the exchanges and discussion it creates, the friendships it helps to forge and the mutual aid initiatives that it helps to launch.

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Tackling Poverty / Solidarity

Germany

Emmaus Punto: fighting addiction

An interview with Richard, Honorary Chair of the Emmaus Punto group which is based in Bergisch Gladbach. Richard tells us about this German group’s experience and expertise on matters related to addiction. 

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Tackling Poverty / Solidarity