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FMS looks back at 2022

The FMS team looks back on an eventful year, in which the world of democracy and development cooperation experienced some highs but unfortunately also many lows. In 2022, the world was shocked by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which also disrupted Dutch and European societies on many fronts, and by climate disasters in Pakistan and the Horn of Africa. But we also witnessed people in Iran and the Balkan who defied power and took to the streets for democracy and human rights.

Our staff, partners, and volunteers

have worked hard this year to make politics fairer and people stronger. And fortunately, we were also able to achieve a lot. We have listed some of the highlights for you.

The fundraiser for Ukraine 

Project Manager

Emiel: "A highlight of 2022 for me was without a doubt the Ukraine action we organised in April to support our loyal partner SD Platform. In no time at all, dozens of volunteers in all corners of the country were ready to help us collect important foodstuffs for those affected by the war. In total, we were able to transport thousands of kilos of goods to Ukraine, where our partner distributed it to those in need - it was very impressive to be part of this."

Read more about the fundraiser here



Another physical Africa day

Project Manager

Jarne: "Africa Day has been organised for over 25 years. After two years when this public event could not take place due to the pandemic, in May this year we organised

there was a physical Africa Day! The central theme was the role of African voices in social discussions and policy - nothing about us, without us. The research that the FMS has done on African perspectives in EU policies was therefore discussed on the day."

Read more about Africa Day 2022 here




The MENA Academy in Kurdistan


Project Manager

Meriem: "The MENA Academy was a great opportunity to bring together women and young people from our sister social democratic parties from the Middle East and North Africa. The aim was to improve their political and personal skills, enabling them to make a positive impact in their countries. In addition, participants were able to expand their regional network. "

Read more about the MENA here Academy




Increased focus on fair development policies

Senior Policy Officer

Anne says: "The FMS is committed to fair and coherent policies towards developing countries, because the Netherlands regularly makes policy choices that cause situations and problems in these land worsen. In 2022, there was a lot of focus on fair and coherent policies for development in the Lower House. As a highlight, we managed to get a separate Committee debate on this issue on the agenda of the Lower House! This debate will take place next year, so hopefully there will be just as much political attention to fair policies in 2023!"

Read more about fair policies for development cooperation in 2022 here




Listened to our contribution

Trainee Lobby and Advocay

Sofie: "In the partnership 'Building Change

' the FMS is working on fair development policies. I have followed many chamber debates and worked with Building Change, we chose one Chamber question that we felt was best with the 'Chamber Question of the Year'. Building Change was also mentioned by name several times this year in policy documents and by MPs. For instance, Minister Schreinemacher's Policy Coherence Action Plan referred to us, and SP MP Jasper van Dijk quoted Building Change in his contribution during a consultation. These moments are very direct proofs that our input is actually taken into account. That makes us proud!"




Attention to the refugee crisis in Curaçao


Intern Democracy

Mathieu: "In November 2022 organisingand we hosted a political café on the refugee crisis in Curaçao. It was a great moment to bring politics, civil society and academia closer bij together to put an underexposed topic in the spotlight. After the political café, I wrote another article on the subject for OneWorld, which was picked up in Curaçao by the Antilliaans Dagblad. The political café en the article underscore for me the strength of the FMS: Highlighting, connecting and engaging with the goal of a fairer world."

Read the article on Curaçao in OneWorld here

Watch the Political Café back





150 visitors at conference on democratic erosion

Intern Democracy

Geerke: "For me, the Democracy under Pressure conference was a highlightof the past year. Together with 150 activists, officials and politicians, we discussed the breakdown of democracies worldwide. The lecture by Belarusian artist and activist Tasha Arlova stayed with me in particular. She spoke about her own experiences of resisting an autocratic regime. Eva Rovers' workshop on citizens' deliberation as an instrument against political polarisation and disillusionment I found hugely inspiring. Hopefully, next year the organisers will have another chance to put down a second conference on this pressing topic!"

Read more about the 'Democrat'ie Under Pressure' conference




Meeting in northern Macedonia


Kido: "In November, I stepped into the role of director of this foundation. But FMS is also a member of several (inter)national networks. From the European Forum for Democracy and Solidarity, I also became secretary-general. Very special to me was the EFDS network meeting in the Macedonian capital Skopje, organised by FMS together with our partners in the Balkans. The warm ties there allow for more regional cooperation and better coordination on how we can help. Instructive and motivating!"