socioeco.org
Resource website of social and solidarity economy

Ekumenická akademie

ekumakad.cz/

Ekumenická akademie/Ecumenical Academy (EA) is an NGO established in 1996 in the Czech Republic and our vision is a socially just, sustainable and tolerant society. EA works on human rights and finding solutions for economic, social, gender and ethnic inequalities. EA supports alternative forms of economical democracy, such as social solidarity economy (SSE), fair trade, cooperatives. EA is organizing campaigns, conferences, seminars, round tables, discussions, publications, happenings and information stands to raise awareness about these issues. EA is active in networking with partner institutions in the Czech Republic as well as throughout whole Europe. EA is a founding member of the Czech Development Cooperation Forum, Czechia Against Poverty (GCAP campaign), Fairtrade Czech and Slovakia, Czech Climate Coalition, Czech Social Watch Coalition, Czech Clean Clothes Campaign, Czech Fairtrade Towns Campaign and newly also a member of Czech Womens Lobby. EA is also member of international networks - Eurodad (European Network on Debt and Development), OIKOSNET Europe (Ecumenical Association of Academies and Laity Centres) and RIPESS Europe (Social Solidarity Economy network). EA has more than 20 years of experience in informal education, cooperation with universities, campaigning on responsible consumption and alternative economic models and creating good practice examples of SSE. EA has been working on promoting and practicing SSE since 2004 on a national and international level. It was an initiator of fair trade movement in the Czech Republic, has run a fair trade shop for 10 years and in 2013 co-established Fair & Bio coffee Roastery. Most importantly EA has been organising SSE educational and awareness raising activities for years in the Czech Republic, has been part of numerous European campaigns, one of them was „Social & Solidarity Economy as Development Approach for Sustainability (SSEDAS) in EYD 2015 and beyond“ in the years 2015-2018 (www.solidarityeconomy.eu, funded by European Commission), which has had an impact not only in the Czech Republic in terms of introducing the term Social Solidarity Economy. Project activities included mapping the situation of SSE in the Czech Republic and showing good practice examples, as well as organizing local and international discussions and networking events, for example a successfull SSE Forum connecting people from different initiatives, areas and territories. EA has a lot of experience with putting the issue of food production and consumption into the SSE context. The focus on the problem of unsustainable agriculture and food production, climate change impacts and the alternatives and possible solutions (on different levels) led to a closer cooperation with organizations promoting organic, local and sustainable food production and finally the Czech Food Sovereignty Initiative was established in 2015. This cooperation is important for promoting SSE, because a lot of good practice examples and a big potential for establishing new initiatives is in this field. Since 2011 EA is also coordinating together with other two organizations the Fairtrade towns campaign (including also fairtrade Schools and Faith groups) and developed good contacts to lot of municipalities and active schools, teachers and trainers in the whole Czech Republic. EA is communicating the topic of fairtrade in a broader context - sustainable consumption, support of local and social solidarity economy initiatives, the Sustainable development goals, etc.