In this section you can find information about who the funders of ILGA-Europe are and how the funding is structured.
In this section:
- What are ILGA-Europe's sources of funding?
- How is the funding being used by ILGA-Europe?
- How are ILGA-Europe’s activities and objectives defined and decided?
- How are ILGA-Europe's finances monitored?
Like every other non-governmental organisation registered under Belgian law, ILGA-Europe’s accounts are public and audited twice a year, including by the European Commission. Our management satisfies the highest transparency standards, and our annual and financial reports are publicly available. Find it all in this section.
Who are ILGA-Europe’s funders?
ILGA-Europe currently has five main funders (public and private funders). They are:
- European Commission/PROGRESS Programme
- Sigrid Rausing Trust
- Open Society Institute: Human Rights and Governance Grants Program and Rights Initiative
- Ministry of Education, Culture and Science of the Netherlands (under the “LGBT and Gender Equality Policy Plan of the Netherlands 2011 – 2015”).
- Freedom House
- The Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor leads of the United States’ State Department
Does ILGA-Europe receive membership fees?
As one of 6 world regions of ILGA (World), ILGA-Europe’s member organisations pay their membership to ILGA (World) directly. Out of solidarity, ILGA-Europe supports the principle that membership fees are used by the world association to support LGBTI organisations in other regions of the world. This is why ILGA-Europe does not receive membership fees from its members.
The grants received by the different funders support various costs incurred by the organisation. The operating grant received from the European Commission is used to cover expenses such as training and capacity-building events for members, production of research and legal analysis to inform policy-making at European and national level, dissemination of information, staff costs, office costs as well as the organisation’s annual conference and board meetings.
Financial support received by the different funders for staff costs is indispensable as it is the staff of ILGA-Europe who has the expertise to provide capacity-building across Europe, to implement projects and to support different actors involved in promoting equality and combating non-discrimination (which currently include employers, trade unions, European and national policy-makers, police forces, equality bodies, etc.).
What is the role of LGBTI organisations in defining ILGA-Europe’s objectives and priorities?
The definition of ILGA-Europe’s priorities and activities is always the outcome of an organisational process involving members, board and staff. Every three years, ILGA-Europe develops a Strategic Plan which serves as a lighthouse to guide all of ILGA-Europe’s activities over a three-year period. This Strategic Plan is adopted by ILGA-Europe’s members at the Annual General Meeting.
Work programmes are developed every year on the basis of the Strategic Plan to set intermediary objectives and to define activities that will be carried out to make progress in relation to each strategic objective. The Executive Board – composed of elected representatives from member organisations – oversees progress on implementation of the Strategic Plan and gives guidance to staff in ensuring that the organisation’s programmes and activities will contribute to achieving the organisation’s strategic objectives. The staff team, led by the Executive Director, is responsible for carrying out the activities linked to the implementation of the strategic objectives and for developing annual work programmes based on the Strategic Plan. The Executive Board and Executive Director report on an annual basis to the members on implementation of the work programmes. ILGA-Europe’s annual activity reports are approved by members at the Annual General Meeting.
What is ILGA-Europe’s relationship with its funders?
ILGA-Europe always seeks financial support from funders whose priorities match ILGA-Europe’s own priorities as identified and defined by LGBTI organisations in Europe in the organisation’s Strategic Plan. In practice, ILGA-Europe does not adjust its objectives to match those of a funding institution. ILGA-Europe currently receives financial support from its donors for work defined by its membership and which is in line with its strategic plan.
ILGA-Europe accounts are managed by the Finance Manager under the supervision of the Treasurer and of the Executive Director. The Finance manager authorises the actual expenditure (after having been given specific authority by the board) and only within the budgets already approved by the Board. The Finance Manager is also responsible for preparing regular financial reports comparing actual income and expenditure with budgeted income and expenditure, and other reports and financial documents required. ILGA-Europe’s treasurer is chosen amongst the members of the Executive Board and is responsible for maintaining an overview of the organisation's affairs, ensuring its financial viability and ensuring that proper financial records and procedures are maintained.
An external Belgian accountancy company is used to ensure compliance of ILGA-Europe’s accounting system with the Belgian accounting standards. Bookkeeping is kept by the external accountants in consultation with the Finance Manager. The accounts are checked quarterly by the Treasurer who is responsible for presenting interim quarterly reports to the Board and final accounts to the General Assembly for voting and approval. ILGA-Europe members approve audited accounts and budget every year at the organisation’s annual general meeting. Moreover, ILGA-Europe reports to its funders on an annual or bi-annual basis on its activities and finances.
ILGA-Europe’s accounts are audited by an external auditor twice a year. ILGA-Europe also gets audited by the European Commission services periodically (ex-post audit) in accordance with its grant agreement.
ILGA-Europe has thoroughly transparent practices in terms of providing information about its budget, allocation of funds and expenditure. The accounts of the organisation are publicly available, including through ILGA-Europe’s annual activity report and financial reports sent to ILGA-Europe members in preparation for the Annual General Assembly (as per ILGA-Europe’s statutes). ILGA-Europe’s audited accounts (since 2008) can be retrieved upon request.
In short, ILGA-Europe’s funding abides by the high standards our funders require, as well as by Belgian law. Its funding, governance structure and activities are comparable to other similar organisations, such as the European Disability Forum, European Network against Racism, the European Youth Forum, the AGE Platform and the European Women’s Lobby.