Frequently Asked Questions About FEMYSO
What is FEMYSO and how was FEMYSO founded?
FEMYSO is an abbreviation for the Forum of European Muslim Youth and Student Organisations. The first meeting between Muslim youth organisations across Europe took place in Sweden in 1995, when the Foreign Ministry of Sweden in co-operation with the Swedish Muslim Youth organisation SUM (Sveriges Unga Muslimer), organised an international conference titled ‘Islam in Europe’. The participants at this conference felt the need to establish better communication between the organisations and undertake steps towards greater co-operation and co-ordination. In June 1996 a meeting was held in Leicester (UK) where thirty-five participants attended this meeting representing nineteen youth and student organisations from eleven countries across Europe. This meeting created strong bonds between those present and resulted in the official launch of FEMYSO.
What is the status of FEMYSO?
FEMYSO is an international non-profit NGO (aisbl) registered in Belgium, our EU Transparency number is 292913016962-90.
What is the structure of FEMYSO?
FEMYSO consists of its Member Organisations, the General Assembly, the Executive Committee and the Board of Trustees. The General Assembly, comprising all Member Organisations, meets every year. At this meeting, the Executive Committee presents its annual financial and activity reports.
A new Executive Committee is elected every two years directly by the Member Organisations at the General Assembly. The Executive Committee, headed by the President, is responsible for defining and implementing the work plan and the day-to-day management of the organisation.
The Board of Trustees is elected every four years by the General Assembly. Its role is to advise the Executive Committee on matters of strategy, policy and vision.
What are FEMYSO’s values and what does FEMYSO really stand for, or envision?
FEMYSO’s vision is to be the leading voice for European Muslim youth, developing and empowering them, and working to build a diverse, cohesive and vibrant Europe. That is achieved through the following mission: To be an exemplary European institution, bringing together Muslim youth to network and exchange ideas, developing them to achieve their full potential and working closely with its Member Organisations as well as other partners to build a better Europe for all.
How many Member Organisations does FEMYSO have?
FEMYSO is a network of 32 Member Organisations across 20 European countries. You can view the full list of Member Organisations here.
Which countries do FEMYSO’s Member Organisations come from?
FEMYSO’s 32 Member Organisations are from Albania, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, North Macedonia, Moldova, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Sweden, Ukraine and the United Kingdom.
Which institutions does FEMYSO engage with?
- EU institutions: Commission, Parliament, Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA)
- Council of Europe: European Youth Foundation (EYF), Youth Department, INGO Conference, Advisory Council on Youth, European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI)
- OSCE: Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR)
- United Nations: Human Rights Committee.
What are some examples of successful trainings and/or campaigns that we have carried out?
- Green Up My Community (2011)
- Islamophobia Monitoring and Action Network (2014)
- Advocates Against Islamophobia in Education (2016)
- ‘Your Vote, Your Voice’ – European Parliament Elections 2019
- Outbreak of Generosity (2020)
Capacity building programmes
- Build my NGO – Leadership development programme (2014)
- Study Sessions with the Council of Europe, e.g.: Combating Islamophobia through intercultural and interreligious work (link to report); Reclaim Your Narrative, I Choose the Council of Europe (link); Outspoken Study Session (video).
- FEMYSO Summer School (2020)
Participation with a delegation at the European Youth Event (EYE) 2016 and 2018. The EYE is an event that brings together thousands of young people from all over the European Union and beyond to meet and inspire each other in the heart of European democracy and develop ideas to contribute to the future of Europe. The event takes place at the European Parliament in Strasbourg.
What is FEMYSO’s stance on hate speech, racism, and discrimination?
FEMYSO stands up against all forms of racism, discrimination and exclusion. Our activities, partnerships and campaigns are testament to our efforts to build a more diverse, cohesive and vibrant Europe.
Where does FEMYSO’s funding come from?
FEMYSO relies on institutional funding such as of the European Commission, European Parliament and Council of Europe (European Youth Foundation). As well on European foundations grants, for example from the European Network Against Racism (ENAR), Open Society Foundations (OSF), and others. Another source of income comes from the Member Organisations’ annual membership fees. As like any other NGO, FEMYSO also allows for individual donations which can be made on our website.
Is FEMYSO affiliated with any political or ideological party, group, movement?
No. FEMYSO is not a political or ideological party or movement, nor is it linked to any political or ideological party, group or movement and has proven throughout the years that our sole objective is to work for a diverse, cohesive and vibrant Europe. See our statement on false accusations here.
Is FEMYSO member of any networks?
FEMYSO is member of a few networks as following:
- Religions For Peace (RfP) European Interfaith Youth Network (EYIN)
- European Network Against Racism (ENAR)
- European Students’ Union (ESU)
- EU Youth Dialogue (European Commission)
- Conference of INGOs (Council of Europe)
- Between 2018-2019, FEMYSO was an official partner of the European Parliament’s “This Time I’m Voting” Campaign.
FEMYSO was formerly member of:
- European Youth Forum (YFJ)
- European Network on Religion and Belief (ENORB)
And finally, while not a network, FEMYSO is officially represented at the Council of Europe’s Advisory Council on Youth.
Is FEMYSO member of the Council of European Muslims (formerly FIOE)?
No. FEMYSO has never been a member of Council of European Muslims (formerly known as Federation of Islamic Organisations in Europe – FIOE).
How can we get involved with FEMYSO?
We are always looking for passionate young people to join FEMYSO and to work together for a more cohesive, diverse and vibrant Europe. If you are interested please apply to join here.