View this email in your browser
Network of European LGBTIQ* Families Associations
Find below NELFA's current newsletter number nine! You will find - as usual - information about the recent activities of our European Network and important news about LGBTIQ* parents, their children, allies and supporters. Enjoy reading!
BRUSSELS, 5 June 2018: The sunny Pride season warms our hearts, but there seem to be some dark clouds in the sky... The rainbow families movement in Europe is facing an uncertain future. On the one hand, we have many positive developments: especially the recent landmark decision in the "Coman case" at the Court of Justice of the EU (freedom of movement for same-sex couples) or the opening of the Greek foster care system for lesbians and gays in civil partnerships. On the other hand, we have to deal with a range of homophobic (verbal) attacks and an ugly ignorance of the well-being of children in rainbow families. LGBTIQ* activists are quite concerned - but we can't give up! Let's convince as many people as possible - that WE ARE ALL FAMILY!

Wind of change for rainbow families in Europe? NELFA is very pleased with the judgement in the so-called "Coman case" (5 June 2018). The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in Luxembourg had to interpret the word "spouse" in the context of EU law on freedom of movement (Directive 2004/38/EC). The judges clarified that same-sex spouses are included in the definition of the term: same-sex couples have equal rights to reside in EU Member States. NELFA congratulates Adrian Coman and his husband Clai Hamilton wholeheartedly and thanks to all organisations involved! Read our full press release here. (Photo: Vadim Ghirda/Associated Press)

NELFA is full of energy after an inspiring Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Lisbon on 17th of March 2018. Several active volunteers from different countries joined the Board, the Executive committee was re-elected. Read NELFA's full press release here. The AGM approved a new Action Plan, which will be further discussed and developped at a Board meeting in Paris on 9th of June 2018. The AGM also approved the Annual Report. If you want to read a summary presentation, you can follow this link. A big THANK YOU goes to the Board members who left NELFA: Jordi Antón (FLG, Spain), Caroline Ausserer (TransInterQueer, Germany) and Juha-Pekka Hippi (Sateenkaariperheet, Finland). You are wonderful! See you soon! (Photo: Paula Myöhänen. Not in the photo: Susana Cárdenaz, Veneta Limberova, Jesús Santos)

NELFA is very pleased with the outcome of the international conference "We should speak out: LGBTI & Family rights" on 16th of March 2018 in Lisbon. The event was organised by ILGA Portugal. Partners were - besides NELFA - the European Network of Parents of LGBTI+ Persons (ENP) and its national leg AMPLOS. These organisations worked together for the very first time! LGBTIQ* (and families) activists from all over Europe discussed the current struggles of the movement and made conclusions for the future. NELFA says THANK YOU to all people involved - especially to ILGA Portugal's Executive Director Marta Ramos for her great work, Paola Panzeri from COFACE Families Europe for her important attendance and Terry Reintke, co-chair of the European Parliament's Intergroup on LGBTI Rights, for her strong video message. See a range of professional pictures here. (Photos: Flavio Alberto and Björn Sieverding)

NELFA and its national member LSVD in Germany organised a cosy European Rainbow Families Meeting in Berlin (28-29 April 2018), including a Welcome Party at the Rainbow Family Centre in Schöneberg and a Boat tour on the river Spree (celebration of this year's International Family Equality Day, #IFED2018, entitled "Children's Rights Matter"). The families and allies came from Austria, Belgium, France, Italy, Spain, Croatia, Denmark, Poland, Luxembourg and Germany and enjoyed the time spent together. The children played a lot on the nearby meadow, the parents shared their experiences and specific circumstances in their home countries. Read NELFA's full press release and see some pictures here. (Photo: Björn Sieverding)

NELFA welcomes two new members! The first one is Deystvie in Bulgaria (full membership). The youth organisation was officially founded in 2012 and is well-known to the community with their legal defence program. In 2015, Deystvie started to work with rainbow families, including regular public events and an informal Facebook group. In 2017, Deystvie launched its first same-sex marriage equality legal case in Bulgaria. The second new (supporting) member is Tolerado in Gdansk/Poland. It is the first project in the country for "families of choice". Tolerado already joined the European Rainbow Families Meeting in Lloret de Mar (2012), organised by our full member FLG.

COPENHAGEN, 12-16 March 2018: NELFA's active volunteer Marina Bellanti (Famiglie Arcobaleno, Italy) attended a training course of our partner organisation "In Dialogue". The topic was "Consulting and development of teams and groups". The whole event was part of NELFA's current Erasmus+ project "Chances and challenges for rainbow families", which will officially end on 30th of June 2018. (Photo: Marina Bellanti)
 LISBON, 14-16 March 2018: In the framework of Erasmus+, ten NELFA Board members and active volunteers from France, Italy, Germany, Poland, Finland, Croatia and Albania took part in a job-shadowing programme at ILGA Portugal. The group met up with staff members to prepare the conference "We should speak out: LGBTI & Family rights" and was invited to Amnesty International to learn more about professional campaigning. A lesbian mother presented rainbow families website (OurKidsAreAllRight) and the "job-shadower" joined a hearing of the Portuguese Parliament concerning a new trans and intersex law. (Photos: Björn Sieverding)
 BRUSSELS, 16-17 April 2018: NELFA took part in an exciting network meeting, organised by ILGA-Europe. The aim was to connect LGBTIQ* activists from different organisations for a broader exchange and to discuss future tasks and possible joint projects. The participants came i.e. from OII Europe, TGEU, IGLYO, EuroBiNet, Forum LGBT, ENP and the European Lesbian* Conference. (Photo: Emma Cassidy)
 BELGRADE, 21 April 2018: NELFA Board member Daniel Martinović - along with his colleagues from Dugine obitelji - presented the first Croatian rainbow families children's book in the Centre for Cultural Decontamination. They also talked about research findings and general struggles of LGBTIQ* parents and their children in their home country. It was the successful start of a publicity campaign in the region and a good opportunity for NELFA to search for new allies. (Photo: Gayten-LGBT)
BERLIN, 30 April - 4 May 2018: Final training course of the current NELFA Erasmus+ project "Chances and challenges for rainbow families"! Seven Board members and active volunteers from Poland, Bulgaria, Croatia, Italy, France and Spain attended the event "Inspiring facilitation, teaching and training for LGBT", organised by "In Dialogue". The next Erasmus+ project is already waiting in the wings: NELFA has been granted for the third time in a row (~33.000 € for 19 so-called 'mobilities'). The new project is entitled "Joining forces for the well-being of rainbow families". (Photo: Matea Popov)
 BRUSSELS, 8 May 2018: NELFA was present at the OUT Village (Fête de L'Iris), together with its Belgian member organisation Homoparentalités. They organised a stand with a range of children's books, a quiz game, crayons and some sweets. The aim was to inform a wider public about rainbow families, and to celebrate the International Family Equality Day, #IFED2018. (Photos: Björn Sieverding)

BRUSSELS, 15-16 May 2018: NELFA Board member Marcos Jornet (Son Nuestros Hijos, Spain) congratulated COFACE Families Europe personally on its milestone birthday (on the International Day of Families). The pluralistic network turned 60 years old and celebrated the anniversary with a cheerful party. The day after, NELFA took part in the Annual General Meeting of COFACE and experienced a very welcoming atmosphere. See some more pictures here. (Photo: COFACE Families Europe).
ZAGREB/BRUSSELS, 17 May 2018: NELFA celebrated the International Day Against Homo-, Trans- and Biphobia IDAHOTB with various events. Board member Björn Sieverding held a keynote speech at the Council of the EU (Equal Opportunities Office Awareness Event) with around 120 attendees. Furthermore, Board member Daniel Martinović and the former president of Galesh, Marc Brell López, talked at a meeting in Zagreb, co-organised by the Spanish embassy. (Photos: Galesh, Jose M. L.Villaverde)
EU, May 2018: NELFA Board members celebrated their families and organisations on different occasions. May is really a fantastic month to meet other LGBTIQ* parents and their children! Have a look at the following pictures of Son Nuestros Hijos (Board members Juan Bastón and Marcos Jornet) in Madrid, FLG (Board member Eleni Maravelia) in Barcelona, Famiglie Arcobaleno in Genova (Board members Giovanni Fantoni and Esteban Jiménez) and Avellino (Board member Giuseppina La Delfa).

GENEVA, 3 May 2018: NELFA welcomes the official launch of the new NGO "International Family Equality Day" and wishes all the best for the recently elected Board! The foundation was hosted by the City of Geneva. The new Co-Presidents, Derricia Castillo-Salazar from Belize and Maivon Wahid from Fiji, want to ensure, that the IFED remains a neutral event, open to everybody. And their aim is to mobilise more people to celebrate: "The greater our visibility, the greater the impact of our ideas and ideals on global public opinion and decision-makers". Read the full press release. NELFA supports IFED since its foundation. Our former President, Maria von Känel (Dachverband Regenbogenfamilien) is treasurer of the new NGO's Board. (Photo: IFED)

TURIN, 3 May 2018: NELFA is very pleased with the outcome of the following case: Chiara Foglietta and Micaela Ghisleni (both members of Famiglie Arcobaleno and active volunteers of NELFA) were, finally, able to register their son. He was born in Italy through assisted insemination in Denmark. However, many fertility procedures (like ART) are banned under a 2004 law. Chiara stated that the public records office suggested her to lie and to say that she had 'sexual intercourse' with a man, to get her boy registered. But she refused. And after some turbulent days, the mayor of Turin took a courageous decision and registered the baby respecting the truth and the intention of its parents. Read NELFA's press release here (Photo: Corriere de la Serra)

ATHENS, 9 May 2018: NELFA is delighted by a new law in Greece which allows same-sex couples in registered partnerships to foster children. The decision - which caused turbulence, both in Parliament and civil society - was passed by 161 votes to 109. However, a ban on same-sex couples adopting children still stands. Therefore, our supporting member Oikogeneies Ouranio Tokso (Rainbow Families Greece) assesses the new legislation as positive step - with a bad aftertaste. Chairwoman Stella Belia stated in a hearing shortly before the decision: "We would expect this administration not to tell us 'you can also be a-bit-of parents, foster parents and caregivers, but not actual parents'. Once again you consider us to be lesser citizens, and this is a discrimination." Read the full statement here. (Photo: Angelos Tzortzinis, AFP/Getty)

AVELLINO, May 2018: NELFA's Vice-President Giuseppina La Delfa published her first book. CONGRATULATIONS! It is entitled "Peccato che non avremo mai figli" (What a pity, that we won't have children). The book describes the long and stony way to become a legally recognised family - with her wife Raphaelle and their two children. Most recently, they got the final court decision, that the French birth certificates (with two mothers) will be accepted and transcribed in Italy as well. A happy ending...
LEIDEN, March 2018: Kees Waaldijk is professor of comparative sexual orientation and one editor of the comprehensive LawsAndFamilies Database. He produced the connected publication "Extending rights, responsibilities and status to same-sex families: trends across Europe" for an important conference in Copenhagen (Council of Europe), with the participation of two NELFA delegates - Jesús Santos and his 15 year-old son Gabriel.
LOS ANGELES, 18 April 2018: The Williams Institute is dedicated to conducting independent research on sexual orientation and gender identity law and public policy. This time, researchers analysed findings from several surveys to develop the LGBT Global Acceptance Index. The work is entitled "Polarized Progress: Social Acceptance of LGBT People in 141 Countries". Read more here.
BRUSSELS, 14 May 2018 : The Rainbow Europe package is a wonderful tool of ILGA-Europe to compare the rights of LGBTIQ* people. It ranks 49 countries on their equality laws and policies. The 2018 edition (Rainbow Map + Index) is quite alarming: It reveals that fewer countries are moving up; many are stagnating, including countries that are traditionally perceived as equality 'frontrunners'.
BERLIN, 14 May 2018: TGEU's Trans Rights Europe Map monitors the conditions imposed upon trans people in European states for legal gender recognition. These conditions include the requirement to obtain a mental health diagnosis, still imposed in 34 countries, and the requirement for a trans person to be sterilised before having their gender legally recognised (in 14 states).
LISBON, May 2018: Ana Macedo from Portugal is a mother of FIVE children and recently published her own rainbow families website, entitled "OurKidsAreAllright". It is really a huge work! Ana is still searching for input, for example from gay dads! If you have any idea to contribute, please write an Email directly to:
BRUSSELS, May 2018: Professor Salavatore d'Amore and researchers of ULB (Université Libre de Bruxelles) have started a new study concerning surrogacy among gay fathers. They would like to find eligible participants for their survey. If you are a gay dad with a child/children born through surrogacy, please, follow this corresponding link.
For the first time, NELFA celebrated the International Day of Families - together with the European Parliament's Intergroup on LGBTI rights. We wanted to highlight that we are ALL family. LGBTIQ* parents (to-be) and their children need to enjoy the same rights as others. A big THANK YOU goes to MEP Malin Björk, Christine Revault d'Allonnes-Bonnefoy, Lynn Boylan, Péter Niedermüller for their selfies and Juliette Sanchez for her coordination! (Collage: Björn Sieverding)
Copyright © 2018 Nelfa aisbl 845937097 - Network of European LGBTIQ* Families Associations. All Rights Reserved. NELFA currently represents 31 organisations in 19 European countries with more than 20,000 members. Greetings to all LGBTIQ* families, relatives, friends, activists and supporters out there!

Our mailing addresses are:,

Support NELFA and LGBTIQ* families in Europe by making a donation.
Bank: CRELAN, Belgium IBAN: BE18 8601 1595 2465 BIC: NICABEBB

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list


This email was sent to <<Email Address>>
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
NELFA - Network of European LGBTIQ* Families Associations · Rue du Marché au Charbon 42 · Brussels 1000 · Belgium

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp