The 2nd RIPESS Europe Congress that is scheduled to take place in Lille on the 5th and 6th of July 2013 is rapidly approaching. Local support will be provided by the regional network of the l’Assemblée Permanente de l’Economie Solidaire du Nord Pas-de-Calais (APES), as well as the Mouvement d’Économie Solidaire français (MES). Almost two years after the Founding Congress in Barcelona, much ground has been covered, but we need to continue our efforts. Firstly we need to expand the network, as continuing to increase our influence is a major issue. There has indeed been progress in this respect, with all continents continuing to prepare for the 5th Meeting of the “Globalisation of Solidarity” that will be held in October in Manila. The theme will be Social and Solidarity Economy (SSE) as an alternative development model. But rather than organising a “ghetto” workshop on expansion, we decided that this issue should be included across the board in all of the workshops.

The workshop themes were decided on the basis of the themes in which that the various members of RIPESS Europe are already involved. The idea behind this is to use the European space as a motor to help our organisations to progress at everyday level, because by working jointly we shall find the means to jointly develop tools and suitable strategies. So please do contact the people responsible for moderating these workshops as of now! They are (1) Responsible consumption, (2) popular education, (3) learning from one another, (4) the state of the art, (5) employment and (6) identity. By doing so you can input ideas for reflection and mobilisation.

RIPESS Europe is continuing to follow the road as an actor in the social movements, and mobilising an increasing number of citizens to build a new paradigm that is grounded in concrete actions. This is why we tool part in the World Social Forum in Tunis. But we are also still continuing to establish the dialogue with public authorities. The opening of our Congress will be devoted to the issue of public policies that support SSE, in partnership with RTES (Réseau des Territoires de l’Économie Solidaire). In the current state of crisis, I believe we can mutually benefit from cooperating and fighting the rise in populism and introverted, stagnating attitudes. Looking forward to seeing you all at the Congress…

Contact :

Eric Lavillunière – General Coordinator RIPESS Europe