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eu can aid! was founded on the realisation of the imbalance between North and South and of the injustice that this imbalance creates for those affected. The same principles have therefore guided the creation of Europe and eu can aid! and today still contribute to their development.
The genesis of eu can aid! lies in the creation, in 1961, of the “Staff Committee for the Campaign Against Hunger” by staff representative organisations in the European Institutions. The task of this Committee was to collect funds from staff for the most vulnerable people. The Committee’s mandate ran until the end of 1967. However, those involved wanted to continue what had been started and set up a permanent organisation.
It was decided, therefore, to found a new, independent body dedicated to development aid. The name “Europe-Third World” was chosen at the founding meeting on 9 November 1967. That meeting also decided to keep the financing of projects in line with the association’s financial means, effectively to the money generated by fees and/or donations from European Institution staff. The idea was to give the fee-paying members and donors a feeling of personal and direct solidarity with the people of the South.
Since then, the association has become an international non-profit-making organisation (Association Internationale sans but lucratif – aisbl) under Belgian law.
In 2013 Europe-Third World is renamed “eu can aid!’ by unanimous agreement of its members to strengthen the call on solidarity and common action in support to global development
Now, more than 40 years on, eu can aid! continues to base its activities on volunteer action and the logistical support of the European Institutions, allowing it to keep its management costs to around 1% of its annual budget.