European Region of the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association

Pre-mailing

Dear Friends,

The movement that never sleeps.

IDAHOT activities are just behind us and many of you are gearing up for Pride events and other summer activities. Here in Brussels we are not only preparing our first ever Brussels European Equality Gala, our team is also already getting ready for the next big thing. We are more than excited to invite you to the 19th ILGA-Europe Annual Conference which will be held in Athens, Greece, from 28 October – 1 November 2015 under the theme

“Many voices, One movement- Together, mobilised for a just society”

We are grateful that our Annual Conference this year will be hosted by ILGA-Europe member OLKE, in collaboration with: SYD, Trans Gender Association, Queer Trans, Rainbow Families, Athens Pride, Thessaloniki Pride, Praksis, Positive Voice, Homophobia and transphobia in education and Volunteers of 2004 Athens Olympic Games. Read the welcome letter from our local hosts.

Register now! Apply for scholarships and propose workshops now!

The Registration Form is now online. The deadlines are as follows (note: the calls for Scholarship Applications and Workshop Proposals are closed):

Tuesday, 30 June 2015 Call for Scholarship Applications closes
Tuesday, 30 June 2015 Call for Workshops Proposals closes
Monday, 31 August 2015 Registration closes

ILGA-Europe offers scholarships for activists who would otherwise be unable to participate in the conference for financial reasons. We are only able to offer limited number of scholarships and therefore encourage you to seek funding in advance within your organisation or from available funding sources. If you apply for a scholarship, you should not yet register via the registration form, but solely fill-out the scholarship application form.

Conference theme

Learning from our conversations in Riga, we plan to ask ourselves some challenging questions this year. Athens will provide the backdrop for discussions on how we can consolidate our victories and engage the entire movement. Our workshops and events will decipher the following topics:

  • How can we make use of the European LGBTI movement’s emerging position as a flag bearer of human rights and democratic values to leverage positive change and rally new allies?
  • How do we broaden the movement of supporters of equality, especially in the face of opposition groups?
  • How can we find new allies to help respond to new threats and challenges?
  • How can we reach out to rally new supporters of equality?
  • How do we leverage growing public support for LGBTI equality to bring about lasting society changes?

During this conference, we will unpack the concept of mobilisation, from including our own communities in our advocacy work to changing public attitudes and involving our allies effectively. We want to explore what the key conditions are for effective engagement. We will be looking at what mobilisation means in different contexts and strengthen our movement’s ability to lead this work. This will lead us to reconsider some of our traditional methods of work, to give a critical look at the messages and narratives we use, to look into new strategies and update our “activist toolbox”.

This year’s conference will see another great number of fantastic speakers. At this stage we are excited to present you already three confirmed keynote speakers:

  • Thorbjørn Jagland,  Council of Europe Secretary General
  • Jessica Stern,  Executive Director of IGLHRC 
  • Geeta Misra, Executive Director of CREA.

Following last year’s success, Miguel Vale de Almeida (anthropologist, professor at the University Institute of Lisbon, and LGBTI activist) has again agreed to be our conference host.

More information about the programme can be accessed here.

Practicalities – welcome to Greece

A welcome reception will take place on Wednesday 28 October, so we advise you to arrive in Athens during that afternoon. The closing dinner will take place on Saturday evening 31 October. Our hosts organise a sunny beach brunch on Sunday 1 November. From there you can easily take a bus to the airport for departure later that afternoon / evening. Please note that your registration foresees departure that same Sunday, but you’re of course welcome to make your own arrangements in order to be able to enjoy Greece longer.

This year’s conference venue is the Divani Caravel hotel, in the heart of Athens and providing a wonderful view on the Acropolis from its upper floors. The budget option, the Best Western Ilisia is located just around the corner. 

Participation fees

Conference hotel
Divani Caravel

Budget Hotel
Best Western Ilisia

No accommodation

Single room

Double room

Single room

Double room

Valid when booked until 30 August

€775

€615

€590

€480

€300

Participation fees include all meals from dinner on Wednesday 28 October until breakfast on Sunday 1 November.

Please note that registration closes 31 August. After that ILGA-Europe still allows on-site registration with no accommodation. All participants wishing to register after 31 August thus have to book their own accommodation. The on-site registration fee to be paid cash in Athens is €350.

Conference mailings

This pre-mailing includes the Scholarship application Form, the Conference Participation Registration Form and the Workshop Proposal Form. The calendar of mailings and further important dates are as follows:

  • 30 June – Deadline for submission of scholarship applications and for workshop proposals
  • 01 July – First Mailing
  • 5 August – Deadline for submission of proposals
  • 26 August  – Second Mailing
  • 31 August – Deadline for registration of conference participants
  • 16 September– Deadline for nominations of candidates for the ILGA-Europe Executive Board, for amendments to proposals, for submission of proposals to host the 2016 conference
  • 5 October – Third Mailing

Social events

The local organising team is working hard to make sure this year’s conference is going to be unforgettable. As part of the social programme they offer a few optional activities that you can join, including a bus-tour, visit to the Acropolis and a brunch at the beach on Sunday. Please note that these activities are optional and that the activities on Thursday and Friday evening overlap with the self-organised spaces. Please indicate in the registration form whether you are planning to attend these activities. Payment for these events takes place upon your arrival in Athens.

Diversity

This year we are aiming to make our conference an even more inclusive space, where we can celebrate the full diversity of our community. Please read our letter about what our plans are and how you can contribute to this

Finally…

For any questions relating to the conference, please contact us at: Athens2015@ILGA-Europe.org

We look forward to seeing you all in Athens in October this year, and we hope in great numbers.

Yours sincerely,

Evelyne Paradis
Executive Director
ILGA-Europe