Adoption of the written declaration on DEAR

The European Parliament calls on member states and the European Commission to support the development education across Europe.

After 4 months of intensive campaigning, the European Parliament has adopted a written declaration for development education and active global citizenship.

On 5th of July the European Parliament officially ratified the written declaration for development education and active global citizenship, co-tabled by MEP Filip Kaczmarek (PL, EPP), Maria Badia i Cutchet (ES, S&D), Fiona Hall (UK, ALDE), Catherine Grèze (FR, Greens) and Michael Gahler (DE, EPP).

This declaration is a major political event in the field of development education. It encourages the strengthening of development education policies both on national and on European level.

The very positive political response of the European Parliament came after heavy campaigning, led by CONCORD and DEEEP and it sets the cornerstones, and determines the framework for future debates for the European citizens’ role in the field of development.

  • Despite the fact that some European Member States have already adopted a national strategy on development education, great is the number of those which does not have such strategy, or has not fully implemented it yet.
  • While Europeans widely support the development, their personal and active engagement for global equality and fairness is still quite low: 89% of Europeans consider development cooperation quite important, while only 4% of them are actually involved in volunteering.
  • The European Commission is one of the most important financing organizations of development education and awareness raising (DEAR) in Europe with a budget of 30 mln euro, transferred to EuropeAid, and still there is no explicit strategy for development education.

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MEP Kaczmarek proclaimed that “development education plays a key role in poverty eradication and sustainable development promotion. It strengthens the support for more active civil engagement on local and global level for encouraging justice, human rights and sustainable development”.

CONCORD and DEEEP will continue working together with the European Institutions and with the European Parliament for promoting development education. The adoption of this written declaration is one very important step towards strengthening the awareness of European citizens with regards to development. Such progress also envisions setting up the foundation for the elaboration of a European Parliament’s report on development education.

In Bulgaria, the Bulgarian platform for international development (BPID) led an active campaign amongst the Bulgarian MEPs. The most active role in this activity had the chair of the DEAR WG, Nadya Boneva, who has sent written materials and information to the Bulgarian MEPs various times, as well as she has met with them in person during the meeting about the declaration, organized in Strasbourg on 23th of May, 2012.

The declaration was supported by the following Bulgarian MEPs: Filiz Hyusmenova and Vladko Panayotov from Movement for Rights and freedoms, Ivaylo Kalfin and Evgeni Kirilov from Coalition for Bulgaria, Andrey Kovatchev, Mariya Nedelcheva and Vladimir Urutchev from Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria and Antonia Parvanova from National movement for Stability and Progress,

The declaration as well as more materials can be found on the website of DEEEP – http://deeep.org/.