What is the European Forum?
The European Forum of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Christian Groups is an ecumenical association of LGBT Christian groups in Europe.
The European Forum aims to achieve equality and inclusion for LGBT people within and through Christian churches, other religious bodies and multilateral organisations.
The European Forum works for freedom of religion, for human rights and dignity for LGBT people and for an affirmative discourse on human sexuality.
European Forum welcomes two new members of staff
The European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups is very pleased to welcome two new members of staff, Fundraiser Damir Kurtagic and Financial Administrator Elena Komarova.
Damir joined the European Forum team in October 2017 and Elena began her role at the beginning of January 2018. Their individual skills and contributions will be invaluable to ongoing and future developments at the European Forum.
Providing core support to the European Forum
Damir Kurtagic comes to the European Forum with a range of experience, including with EU institutions. His main duties will consist of grant-writing, fundraising proposals, and advising on overall fundraising strategy. He has already helped the European Forum to apply for additional funding and has attended events such as the ILGA-Europe Annual Conference in November as a representative of the organisation.
Elena Komarova has a strong background in financial management and bookkeeping and replaces Misha Cherniak, who served with the European Forum in the role of Financial Administrator for several years. Elena's main task will be managing the European Forum’s finances, consisting of preparing payments, bookkeeping them in our new Financial System called FundEZ, and communicating and working closely with various stakeholders.
Elena will also assist the Board and staff of the Forum with producing grant budgets and financial reports. Once a year during the Annual General Meeting (AGM), she will present the organisation’s accounts and annual budgets.
“We are very happy Damir and Elena have decided to join the European Forum staff team and are looking forward to our fruitful collaboration,” said Matijs Mihelmanis, Treasurer.
The European Forum is also very happy to continue the highly appreciated work rendered by Misha Cherniak, who was the Forum’s Financial Manager and Project Manager until 1 January 2018. Misha now serves the European Forum as its Programme Officer. He is responsible for managing and coordinating the funded (project) work of the European Forum and also creating an expanding network of individuals and organisations that help further the cause of LGBT+ people of faith within their churches, communities, and wider society. As such, Misha on occasion (co-)represents the European Forum.
Part of an expanding team
Damir and Elena join two other staff members, Programme Officer Misha Cherniak, and Communications Officer Sadie Hale, bringing the staff total to four. In collaboration with the Board, they will together work towards expanding the European Forum’s reach and scope of activities across the continent, better serving its members, increasing its presence at events, and advocating for LGBT Christians and inclusive faith whenever possible.
This is an exciting time in the European Forum’s journey and welcoming Damir and Elena is an important step in the organisation’s expansion.