The mission of the European Citizens’ House (ECH) was to help restore a sense of participation and ownership of the European project to citizens.
Since the financial crisis in 2007/2008, the gap between the EU Institutions and the citizens has become ever wider. Extreme right wing nationalist populism and xenophobia is on the increase throughout Europe. Moreover, among all the prestigious institutional buildings and offices in Brussels, citizens and civil society lack their own space. Civil society organisations see themselves as missing out in terms of access to European funding, sharing of best practices and networking. Commercial and producer interests still make up 85% of the estimated 2,600 associations and 15,000 lobbyists around the EU.
The goal of the ECH was to engage “the unengaged” by becoming a focal point for citizens and European civil society not yet represented in Brussels through both physical premises and a strong online presence.