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General Assembly of COFACE



[28. 3. 2012] The annual meeting of the General Assembly of the Confederation of Family Organisations in the European Union (COFACE) took place on Tuesday, March 27th in Brussels. In addition to taking stock of last year, the General Assembly elected its new Administrative Council  as the quadrennial mandate of the directorate ends now. The new elected president is Annemie Drieskens, who succeeds to Yves Roland Gosselin. At the end of the meeting, a ceremonial reception in honour of the outgoing president took place in the European Parliament.


Basis for the election of a new president was the election of the new Administrative Council, the decission making committee of the COFACE. The Administrative Council consists of representatives of the member organisations states. Sven Iversen, director of the AGF represents Germany.

The Administrative Council elects the president of the COFACE as well as the vice-presidents and the treasurer. Beside Annemie Drieskens (Belgium) as president, Marién Delgado (Spain) and Helena Hilla (Finland) have been confirmed in their functions as vice-presidents as well as Eric de Wasch (Belgium) in his function as treasurer. Additionally Josef Jelinek (Czech Republic) was elected to vic-president.

Präsident/innen der COFACE, Andor, Nilsson
Another modification in the COFACE is a change in the directorate. Agnes Uhereczky will replace the current director William Lay, who is retiring in May. William Lay has been COFACE's director for almost 30 years. Therefore, two formative faces of the last years of COFACE celebrated their farewell in the General Assembly.

After eight years in the function of COFACE's president, Yves Gosselin said goodbye with a speech in which he looked back on eventful times of the organisation. Next to a melancholic feeling, he looks forward to a now upcoming holiday which he will enjoy without sorrows, knowing the COFACE in safe hands.
In her inaugural speech,  Annemie Drieskens highlighted the chances of changes in the board and the directorate. She thanked to her predecessor and the outgoing director for their work which will build the solid base for her future work. She is looking forward to the common future of the new team of the board and the directorate. Important challenges will have to be beard by the COFACE in the future. Especially in times of the financial crisis, it is important to underline the impact of families as being the base of the societies and to apply for their interests.

At the end of the meeting, a ceremonial reception in honour of the outgoing president took place in the European Parliament. Pervenche Berès, MEP and chairwoman of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs, invited to this event. Amongst other guests, László Andor, Commissoner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, and Steffan Nilsson, president of the European Economic and Social Committee, joined the ceremonial.