Annual Report 2016

9.5 Meet and Greet

The nine participants to the 2016 EFA Meet and Greet the EU training met with six Members of the European Parliament. 


From left to right: Capacity building sessions with RESPIRA (Portuguese COPD patients’ association), FENAER (Spanish Respiratory   patients’ association), FFAAIR (French Respiratory patients’ association), Allergy UK (UK Allergy patients’ association).

EFA Meet & Greet the EU training

Every year we invite patient advocates from our network to learn more about the functioning of the EU institutions, understand what is at stake in the EU policies under discussion, and influence their Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) to adopt decisions embracing patients’ needs. In 2016, nine participants learned how to develop an advocacy campaign strategy and the insights of the current EU discussion on prevention, reimbursement, and rehabilitation. Eight participants met with their MEPs to ask them to sign the written declaration on chronic respiratory diseases.

Efa Info STAR

“Thanks to EFA’s Meet & Greet training, not only I learned how to influence health policies more effectively through advocacy campaigns and social media, but also I started put them in practice during a Polish event on the circular economy organised at the European Parliament. As PhD candidate and expert on personal exposure to ambient air pollution, being invited to such high level conference was a great experience”.

Anna Gayer, polish patient advocate and Meet & Greet participant

EFA capacity building programme

Our capacity building programme aims at supporting our members’ capacity to achieve meaningful results at national level and through EFA. In 2016, we transferred knowledge to four national patients’ associations and helped train 67 patient advocates, who acquired new competences in governance, fundraising, project management, communication and advocacy.


“The 2016 capacity building session which was extremely useful for our volunteer members. We learned very important things such as how to structure our day to day activities, to better communicate and to inspire others”.

Isabel Saraiva, Portuguese COPD patient and advocate and Capacity Building participant