2013 Bratislava – Weaving together a Europe of Hope

The General Assembly 2013 of Andante
wandkleed bratislava Between the 25th and the 28th of April, 2013 representatives of 18 member organisations of Andante met in Bratislava, Slovakia for the fourth General Assembly of the Alliance created in 2006.
The theme of the Study Days preceding the Statutory Assembly high-lighted both the challenges and the many areas of problems facing Europeans today, but also focused on the hopes and possibilities represented by women joining forces and working together to create “a Europe of Hope”.

Women representing Andante member organisations expressed concerns about poverty, human trafficking, the situation of migrant workers, the need to protect the Creation, bio-ethics, care for elderly people and others in need, violence against women and the crisis in the fields of values and ethics.
The participants of the Study Days were divided into dialogue groups allowing women of very different backgrounds to share and “weave” their experiences. This was also done in a very concrete way as each group presented at the end of the session a woven cloth made by the women of the group. These cloths were later put together and made into a big tapestry.


At the Statutory Assembly, the concerns from the Study Days as well as suggestions from organisations and the outgoing Co-ordinating Committee (CoCOA) were put to a vote, and the CoCoA for the 2013-2016 period was given the mandate to concentrate in particular on the themes dealing with poverty, trafficking and bio-ethics. At the same time the Assembly endorsed the proposal to encourage all member organisations to use the last Saturday of September (in 2013: the 28th) as an Andante Day for the Creation where issues regarding the protection of the Creation are put on the agenda one way or the other by each member organisation in their own country.The Assembly bid farewell to Marie-Louise van Wijk-van de Ven, one of Andante’s ‘Founding Mothers’ and an enthusiastic and devoted chair, who has worked tirelessly and with great success for the establishment and the promotion of Andante over the past 7 years as well as to Claire Renggli-Enderle who has been her close associate and Andante’s competent and loyal head of finances. Thanks were also expressed to Maria Theresia Opladen and Sophie Pujalte for their good work and efforts on behalf of Andante in the out-going CoCoA. Inese Augskalne (LKSA, Latvia), Mette Bruusgaard (NKKF, Norway), Mária Demeterová (KhzS, Slovakia), Zsuzsa Laczkóné Huszka (KNFE, Hungary) and Mary McHugh (NBCW, United Kingdom) were all re-elected whereas Waltraud Deckelmann (KDFB, Germany), Vroni Peterhans-Suter (SKF, Switzerland) and Gisela Hoeve (Unie NKV, the Netherlands) were the new members elected to the CoCoA. Mary McHugh was elected the new chair with Mette Bruusgaard and Waltraud Deckelmann as vice-chairs.
The date of the next Andante Assembly was set for the 14th to 17th April, 2016. Investigations are being made concerning the possibility of having this Assembly in Great Britain.
Many thanks were expressed to Mária Demeterová and her great team of Slovak women for their kind hospitality and for the wonderful cultural programme arranged for the participants. No doubt reports about these enriching days in Bratislava will be reported back to Andante’s member organisations along with new ideas and many challenges!

Link to the programme

Link to the Activities’ Report 2010-2012

Link to the talk of Mária Raucinová

Link to the talk of Christa Nickels (German)

Link to the talk of Doris Stump (German)