It’s official. Finally.
On 23 March, the new European Cancer Community Foundation was constituted and its board was appointed. Its work can now begin.
As many of you know, I am particularly enthused about the foundation and its potential to create new avenues of funding in support of the European Cancer Organisation (ECO)’s mission and strategy. It was something I promised our membership when I assumed my role as president fourteen months ago.
We have now put in place clear parameters that ensure the ECO and the foundation move forward as one, in close collaboration, benefitting our member societies and patient groups, and cancer care as a whole.
The fact that four of the foundation’s five board members are also ECO board members, including myself, reflects the synergy we expect.
The foundation, however, being a separate entity, also has the tools to help launch new initiatives. For example: if the European Cancer Organisation considers that a project is critical to implement, the foundation can raise the funds to make that initiative happen.
Fundraising is built into the structures of a foundation and will be a valuable tool for us. I am sure many of our readers are aware of the challenges that the 60/40 or 80/20 co-funding issue is creating for the implementation of the EU Beating Cancer Plan and the EU4Health schemes. Thanks to the foundation, we can work with that co-funding model. And potentially every member and society within the European Cancer Organisation stands to benefit.
I also see the foundation being an ECO ambassador beyond the cancer community. ECO has specific statutes, and its work is governed by those. It’s an umbrella organisation of scientific societies and organisations such as the European Oncology Nursing Society and the European Respiratory Society. You don’t hear, for example, the names of ‘Apple’ or ‘Google’ ever mentioned. These companies have nothing to do with cancer, but they are companies that are potentially interested in investing in what the European Cancer Organisation is doing to build more efficient and effective care across the continent. The foundation now offers them a way to get involved.
We have already heard of external entities eager to contribute after the launch of the foundation. Indeed, we heard interest expressed a year ago when the foundation was simply an idea taking shape. While some will wait to see how we operate, some are ready to go now.
This is why we have organised a kick-off event in Brussels and have invited an array of potential foundation donors. We have been eager to explain in greater detail how the foundation will proceed and how we can expand the number of organisations that want to contribute to our efforts. More details on this inaugural event can be found here.
Thank you again for your impressive collaboration and continued support.
With warm wishes,
Founder & Chair
European Cancer Community Foundation