In 2013 and 2014 under the supervision of the Dutch organization MOVISIE (Utrecht) and financed by the European Commission a consortium of European partners has introduced in Europe a new concept in the approach of domestic violence. In 6 municipalities, spread over 5 countries new pilot formats has been successfully set up under the name of Family Justice Centers (FJC). The participants were:
- Mutsaersstichting (The Netherlands, Venlo)
- Veilig Thuis Midden-Brabant (the Netherlands, Tilburg)
- Foundation G.B. Guzzetti (Italy, Milan)
- Berlin Initiative Against Violence towards Women (Germany, Berlin)
- Women’s Right Center (Poland, Warsaw)
- Province of Antwerp Welfare and Health Service and City of Antwerp (Belgium, Antwerp)
During the project Foyle Women’s Aid from Derry, Northern Ireland joined the project. This organization was also running a Family Justice Center model in Derry. Also Koncept Karen from Malmö, Sweden and the partners building up a FJC in Limburg, Belgium allied to the network of the project.
In January 2015 the project ended and all partners were dedicated to further work together on high-quality multi-agency cooperation on gender based, domestic, sexual violence and child abuse, with the FJC as leading model. To ensure the sustainability of the FJC developments in Europe, the original project team has founded the European Family Justice Center Alliance (EFJCA) in 2014. This partnership is organized in the Netherlands under the legal entity of the Foundation ‘European Family Justice Center Alliance’ (EFJCA).
Since 2015, more partners from different countries joint the EFJCA and the network is still growing fast. The geographical spread and variety of partners gives the network the capacity to achieve a wide range of regions and organisations, and the possibility to share the outcomes at pan-European level.
The EFJCA further developed and develops a range of products and activities to obtain the goals of the mission and vision. In 2015-2016 the EFJCA focused on the strengthening of the network and the work of the FJC’s and affiliated multi-agency approach, and offering different tools to the members:
- Implementing of the framework and structure of the European Network, including rolls and responsibilities
- Regular contacts with the members and members meeting
- Outreach and visits to new and candidate members
- Development of the long-term goals
- Work on financial input
- Working on the visibility and sustainability of the network
- Workshops, key-note speeches, trainings at various events
In 2017 the EFJCA develops further as a sustainable network, engaging in projects, training, conference, tools to support to the members and to develop FJCs and high-quality multi-agency cooperation.