The Foundation was initiated by Irene Evens-Radzyminska and George Evens in 1990. Having witnessed the horrors of World War Two, which forced them to flee their home in Poland, they found new hope in Belgium. The foundation’s creation was an expression of their belief in – and commitment to – the European Project: a vision of a Europe where unity and solidarity would prevail over discord.
Since then, the Evens Foundation has evolved in response to the changing needs and concerns of communities within the EU and beyond while remaining committed to the values of diversity, freedom, responsibility and solidarity.
In 2023, the Foundation initiated a new strategy with a new mission focusing on the generation that represents the future of Europe: young people aged 16-29.
Corinne Evens, daughter of the founders, is the Honorary President of the Foundation. Joe Elborn is the Foundation's Executive Director, and Monique Canto-Sperber is the Chairwoman of the Executive Committee.
The expression Living together harmoniously in Europe embodies the founders’ vision and stands at the core of our work. We look for tangible ways to engage with this concern across the arts, democracy, education, media and science.
We identify and support innovative ideas and award achievements through our prizes and calls. Furthermore, we foster experimental projects that bridge the gap between research and practice and facilitate knowledge exchange through lectures, seminars, debates and publications.
We collaborate with an ever-expanding network of citizens, practitioners, researchers, NGOs, academic and cultural institutions connecting different communities and perspectives across the continent and beyond.
As an operative foundation, we initiate and run projects together with our partners. Since the foundation’s outset, we have opted to take risks and we remained solidly committed to experimentation—be it through designing our own projects or supporting independent pioneering ideas. We mainly focus on the development of pilot projects testing scientific hypotheses, innovative pedagogies or artistic processes.
Working from a range of different areas in Europe, we have acquired a deep knowledge of local and transnational realities and the stakes involved. Our initiatives consider these specificities while seeking a broad dissemination and pan-European praxis exchange.
Find out all about our activities and projects in the last years in our Annual Reports or check our current projects and prizes.