Madrid, February 2021
The Delegates Meeting March 5-6, 2021
Dear Delegate of the EFPP
It is our pleasure to invite you to the biennial EFPP Delegates Meeting 2021 that will take place Friday 5th and Saturday 6th via Zoom.
We and the whole Board wish that all of you and your families and beloved ones are in good health.
A lot has happened since we last saw each other in Berlin in March 2019. The effects of the pandemic are having a dramatic impact on society: we are confronted with the overburdening of our health systems, economies are collapsing, poverty is increasing along with social inequalities, destructive populism is finding more and more space in politics and society and the vulnerable people are at risk of being insufficiently cared for to be in a condition to participate in society. The fantasies that the vaccine would come to save us and take us back to the good old days also break down when we find a reality where its administration does not escape the habitual conflicts.
The public is feeling desolate, sad, frustrated, disappointed, angry, fatigued … So are we and our institutions and organizations. Similarly, the hopes placed in the new technologies, which at the beginning of the crisis seemed to be a salvation anchor that would allow us to continue to work in the same way, are beginning to collapse. More and more we hear a growing discomfort in our patients, in ourselves and in our associations and national networks, for having to continue to relate in this way. But we also have to be tolerant, open-minded and flexible and take advantage of the opportunities that this new way of life offers us.
The Delegates´ Meeting, a fundamental event in the institutional, social and emotional life of the EFPP, must also face this reality, it needs to contain and tolerate it. If we are capable to do so, we will find a way to enjoy this event, strengthen ourselves with shared experiences and renew our inspiration and motivation to keep working, repairing and building the future of EFPP.
The present reality unfortunately forces us to hold the Delegates Meeting entirely in Zoom and not in the hybrid format (face-to-face and virtual) as we wanted and announced in the letter of 30 October 2020. However, we have organised and scheduled the meeting in such a way that a fluid, fruitful and stimulating meeting can be realised.
Thus, the meeting, originally planned as a three-day event, will take place over two days. In order to be able to discuss and work on important topics in depth, several preliminary meetings have been held in each section since last autumn. The process developing in these section meetings will be able to reach a first completion in a final section meeting during the Delegates Meeting itself.
This format offers an ample space for the protagonists of this event, the Delegates.
Some Delegates have kindly agreed to share different experiences of the national networks they represent with all Delegates. There will also be space for Delegates to report on the activities of their associations and national networks (conferences, books, working groups, etc.).
We are pleased to have Anna Zajenkowska as our speaker on “Reflective citizenship”. The presentation will be followed by an experience session. It will certainly be a thought-promoting experience to think as citizens of Europe and as Delegates of the EFPP.
We will be pleased to present the new EFPP Website, a dynamic instrument that will promote communication and interaction among Delegates. Anne Sauer will send you a tutorial with instructions for the use of the Delegates Area. We greatly appreciate your collaboration to update your data and those of your associations, suggest changes and make comments on aesthetic aspects. This collaboration is essential to make the Website ready to launch to the public.
Regarding the Board, given that many changes took place in the previous Delegates Meeting, (president and three members) and to favour the cohesion and continuity of the working group, it has been decided that Hansjorg Messner and María Teresa Díez Grieser will continue for a term of two more years. We will say goodbye to Ulrich Schultz-Venrath, thanking him for his fruitful work as Chair of the Group Section and we will welcome the new representative to be elected at the Group Section meeting. Michael Stasch, co-opted by the Couple and Family Section, will be officially ratified as a representative on the Board of this Section.
For the closing of the Delegates Meeting and on the occasion of the 30th Anniversary of the EFPP we will conduct a panel with the first president of the EFPP Brian Martindale and further former presidents. We have to know where we come from to know where we are going!
Finally, we invite you to a farewell toast to celebrate a meeting that will be different but hopefully full of life and good work.
We are very much looking forward to meeting you in March.
Warm regards, also on behalf of the EFPP Board
María Eugenia Cid Rodríguez María Teresa Díez Grieser
President Honorary Secretary