We are very concerned about our long-standing partner organizations in Ukraine, which are particularly dependent on our help because of the war. At the moment, forum civique staff members are still on the ground in Transcarpathia.
They are very busy there with the reception and care of refugees as well as help with the onward journey. We are in constant exchange with them, as well as with our staff in Romania and Austria. Our priority is the care and evacuation of the most vulnerable. In this extraordinary situation we have to react immediately. Money is needed to house and care for the people. We are looking for a circle of friends who are willing to help with a generous special donation.
Other current campaigns of the European Civic Forum.
• We continue to support the Andalusian trade union of agricultural workers in El Ejido, in southern Spain, the SOC which now forms part of the SAT. It is the only trade union genuinely seeking to enable the migrant workers in the province of Almeria to get organised and defend their rights.
• The ECF is co-publisher (with Longo maï) of « From seed to seed », a set of four DVDs with 40 short films showing how to multiply your own vegetable seeds. These films now exist in Arabic, English, French, German, Portuguese and Spanish.
• We have for many years been involved in solidarity and in concrete projects in the Calabrian village of Riace in Italy. The mayor, Domenico Lucano, and many of his fellow villagers reacted to the arrival on the coast of hundreds of migrants by welcoming them to Riace, a village suffering from a considerable reduction in its population and from economic decline. In addition to supporting the revival of craft workshops, we would like to encourage solidarity tourism with citizens from other European countries going for holidays in Riace, thereby supporting the village economically.
• Migration. In all countries where the European Civic Forum has offices, we are very committed to welcoming and defending migrants. This is particularly true in France, Germany and Switzerland. In 2018 the ECF organised an international delegation to Bosnia-Herzegovina to investigate the alarming situation of migrants there, in particular in the refugee camps close to the Croatian border.
• Members of the ECF closely follow the evolution of forests and forest management in Europe, in particular in France. They have, for example, been active in the campaign against a large biomass power station in Gardanne, near Marseille, which would require vast quantities of wood for the production of electricity. This is just one of many such projects across Europe that are increasing the pressure on forests throughout the planet which are no longer considered to be biodiverse ecosystems, but simply sources of raw materials for industry.
• Members of the ECF in Ukraine are strongly involved in the Free Svydovets Group which is fighting against the project to build a huge ski resort in the Carpathian Mountains. Murky investors plan to build over 60 hotels, 120 restaurants, 33 ski-lifts, 230 km of ski-runs and even an aerodrome. The resort would have a capacity of 28.000 tourists and would have a devastating impact on the ecosystem, on the forests and biodiversity and on the water regime. The ECF has helped to make this affair known throughout Europe and has mobilised interventions by many NGO, members of the European Parliament and other individuals. It has also denounced the massive deforestation in the Carpathians due to illegal logging.