Annual meeting in The Hague, May 15-17: ‘The right of feeling at home while being at home’

Dear Eniec members,

Due to uncertainties in this corona-times the board decided to postpone the meeting to may. It is already three years ago since we last met in real life. The cancellation of the meeting in Tallinn was very painful and the online meeting of 2021 was very joyful. But this year we hope to meet again and therefore the board chooses to better be safe than sorry in the suggestion that may feel more safe than march.

In the meantime, a bunch of people in The Hague and Gdansk are already working on the annual meetings of 2022 and 2023. The main topic both years, beside (re-)connection between the members and sharing how we dealt with the problems due to Covid-19 pandemic, is migration inside Europe. As network with so much knowledge and experience about migration the board and organizing committee find out it is very important to help with solutions the ‘new’ migrants are facing.  As members of the organizing committee of both meetings, Elisabeth de Vries and Elżbieta Czapka were delighted that Eniec member Feruze Sarikas is willing to be involved in the organization of the meeting in The Hague.

Feruze Sarikas: ‘As Eniec member I am very proud to invite my fellow members to the city where I work. The Hague is a city with lots of possibilities, good examples but also a lot off unsolved problems. For already more than five decades there where different types of policy about migration and dealing with integration, diversity and inclusion. It is my profession to help schools and the organizations to reinvent the meaning and skills off social work to make it future proof. In a superdivers city like The Hague you need other skills to help vulnerable elderly and youth then in the past. At the annual meeting of 2022 you will be shown a lot of examples as well we will debate about the topics. The debate will be about the question ‘Mobility all over Europe from East to West – how can we use the lessons learnt from earlier migration?’ The people form migrant organizations will talk about the lives of their members, who moved from East to West and dealing with issues like: families living all over Europe, health- and language-issues, not having a clear idea where and how to live when you are going to be older and expectations from family members about family care. We are delighted we are going to collaborate with some local migrant organisations about this. Furthermore, a lot of Eniec members are organizing some parts in the meeting’.

Two of those Eniec members are Ellen Pals and Irene Meijers: ‘As social workers for elderly inhabitants of The Hague we are dealing with different issues on diversity. For instance: how do we provide healthy food for migrants in daycare. We discussed this topic at one of Eniec informal Thursdays. At the meeting we will organize for you a field trip in the neighborhood of the venue where the meeting is held. The neighborhood Transvaal is the most ethnic-diverse area of the city. Together with the owner of the venue Julianaplaza, Atalay Celenk, we will show you what is to be done in co-creations between inhabitants, entrepreneurs, social and housing organizations and the municipality of The Hague to increase the quality of life of people with the people living here. Our meeting project for elderly is one of the visits during this trip and we will also involve some social work and entrepreneurs to make the field trip complete.’

Feruze: ‘We will welcome all members at may 15 in the Mercure hotel, in the middle of the city center. All new members will have a special meeting with the board just before the opening of the meeting. The start of the meeting is at Sunday, which is new for all of us, but we are convinced this is going to work. From the hotel we will walk to the headquarters of Haagwonen, the Housing company where Eniec members Mohammed Baba and Susan van der Steen work. At Haagwonen we will have our opening ceremony and buffet. Next day, may 16, we will take the public transport to Julianaplaza where we stay all day for the program. In the evening we will have our dinner and dancing here. We are also going to celebrate network’s fifteenth anniversary, as it started in 2007 in Copenhagen and was actually formalized in The Hague in 2008. The last day of our meeting, may 17, we will visit a nursing home and in this home we will have our general assembly. As the organizing committee we will make sure you all will go home with a lot of impressions, ideas and a warm feeling being part of our beautiful network.’

We are also looking forward to the next meeting, in Gdansk. Also here our main topic will be ‘The right of feeling at home while being at home’. In collaboration with the university we will continue our discussion and off course we are going to give you a glimpse off elderly care in Poland.

Kind regards, looking forward to meet you all in May!

Don’t forget to register! ENIEC AM 2022, The Hague (


The over-all organizing committee of the Annual Meetings in The Hague and Gdańsk,

Elisabeth de Vries and Elżbieta Czapka