How we are funded
WeMove Europe’s financial and political independence is our guiding light. We do not allow the pursuit of financial stability to get in the way of our independence. We will not take funding from corporations, governments or state institutions to ensure we can continue to direct campaigns on issues related to corporations and remain politically independent. We work with donors who do not impose political conditions that restrict our mission or limit our independence. Our funding currently comes from individual members across Europe who support our work (89%) and progressive foundations (11%).
We want to be transparent and accountable about how we are funded and how we spend your donations. The information below is intended to do that. If you have questions or feedback on how we present this information, don’t hesitate to contact us.
Where does WeMove Europe get its funding from?
The core of our budget is made up of small donations from thousands of people across Europe, many of them donating each month with a regular donation. Being people-powered also means this, each of us donating what we can afford. The average donation is around €16, but it varies and every single donation, whether €1 or €500, helps us achieve our mission.
The support from members across Europe grew to a rocketing 2.3M euro (1.9M euro in 2021), making it 89% of our income in 2022. Other income sources were progressive foundations and partners (11%). A more detailed breakdown of our income over 2022 is available below.
When we launched in September 2015, we were able to do so thanks to the generous funding from Campact.de, WeMove’s sister organisation in Germany. They will always have our thanks for helping us get started and giving us the stability to get our feet on the ground.
The following progressive foundations have funded us at different points in time since launching in 2015: the European Climate Foundation, Charles-Leopold-Mayer Foundation, the Open Society Foundation for Europe, Porticus, Plastic Solutions Fund, the Sunrise Project Australia and a number of private individuals.
How does WeMove spend my money?
WeMove Europe has a team of 30 staff (15 of which are part-time). As our expenditure results show, the majority of our work and expenses go into running campaigns that use innovative tools and tactics. We run actions online and offline and communicate in 7 European languages. Our campaigns are run by a team of 9 full time and 10 part-time staff (located in 9 countries). At the end of 2022, they were supported by our Tech team (4 staff), Operations team (4 staff), Fundraising team (2 staff) and our Executive Director.
In the graph, you can see how WeMove Europe spent money during the last financial year.
Read about what we do and how we campaign across Europe to have a better vision of what WeMove stands for:
If we raise money for a specific action but the money raised is not enough we will get in touch to explain the situation and plans to make the action happen, but regardless, you will be given the opportunity to request a refund for your donation.
If you are donating to a specific campaign, your
donation will go towards that campaign, including specific expenses like deliveries
to decision makers, research, translation, travel costs, IT infrastructure. If
you are donating for a specific campaign tactic, like printing an advert
in a newspaper or a local protest your money will go towards funding that action.
Any donations that go beyond what is needed for a specific tactic will
go towards the campaign in general..
Will I be kept up to date regarding what happens to my donation?
Whether you donated for a specific campaign, a campaign tactic, or have set up a regular monthly donation to the organisation, we will let you know where your donation has gone. This information will almost always come in one of our emails that reports back to the whole community on the success of a specific campaign, action or tactic. But if you have any questions feel free to drop us a line at email@example.com.
What happens when you raise more money than you need for a given campaign?
WeMove Europe has very rarely been in this position. If we raised money for a tactic regarding a specific campaign (ex. Newspaper ad) and more money was raised than needed, it would go towards another tactic for that campaign. If we were to be in a position where more money is raised than necessary for a specific campaign, the donation would go towards funding campaigns on a similar topic. If this is not possible, the donation would go towards researching more campaign opportunities or tech development for new campaigning tactics. It is also important to note that donations raised do not determine how much staff capacity is put into winning a campaign.
What happens when you raise money for other organisations and movements?
WeMove Europe works with an incredible network of movements and partners across the continent. There are normally two different scenarios in which we raise money that involve other organisations.
The first is when there is an action that we are running together or contributing to, with partners. It could be buying up billboards across Brussels; organising European-wide polling on an issue we work on; contributing towards a climate march in a specific city; contributing to legal fees of a joint legal action we are taking with partners; etc. In these cases we agree beforehand how much WeMove could contribute to the specific action. We then turn to the community. If more is raised than needed for the action, the excess money goes towards other actions to help win that campaign (maybe instead of taking out one newspaper ad, we could take out two, or instead of “just” polling, we also have money to hire media experts to help distribute the results across Europe, etc.). If we don’t raise enough funds, we still contribute to the action, taking money from the budget we have allocated for that campaign.
The second approach is when there are specific moments where we believe the most valuable impact the WeMove Europe community can have is by raising funds directly for organisations or movements. For example, during the 2016 protests in Poland against a draconian law to fully ban abortion in the country, the WeMove community raised €16,000 for women’s groups in Poland to fight this law and for women’s rights. Another example is when during the harsh winter conditions in 2017, refugees stuck in Greece and Serbia were facing below zero temperatures with no shelter, clothes or food, so the WeMove community raised €70,000 to go to organisations helping people in these countries survive the winter.
After these two incredible experiences, we noticed that around 5% of the money raised went to administrative fees (bank costs, credit card fees, internal and external accounting costs, etc.) which WeMove was spending in order to be able to donate the entire sum of the donations to the organisations. So we decided that with future crowdfunding actions for other organisations and movements, 95% of those donations will go directly to the intended beneficiary, and 5% will be retained so as to cover the administrative fees.
Below you can find more answers to commonly asked questions to our donations!
WeMove’s staff is paid according to several criteria, based on experience, role in the organisation and the cost of living and competitive salary in the place they live in. We want to use our donor’s money wisely, but we also want our staff to have a good living wage, and we aim to balance both goals with our salary structure. We also orient this structure based on what other NGOs pay their staff.
WeMove takes pride in ensuring extremely high standards of data privacy and security and this particularly applies for your donation.
We use 128 bit SSL technology to secure your donations, just like a bank does. This means that all the details are encrypted and no one else can read them. It's not only for your donations, but these security measures extend to when you sign a campaign or fill in a survey.
For credit card donations, we use Stripe, a common provider of online bank transactions, to securely process your donations. We use CiviCRM to process and manage donations made with direct debit. We also offer the option to pay via PayPal so once a user has been transferred to the PayPal website to make a donation we are unable to control what happens on PayPal’s website. It is important to note, for those wishing to make a donation, that the fees from direct debit or direct money transfers to our bank account are much lower than for donations we receive from credit cards or PayPal.
At any point in time that you wish we can cancel your recurring donation. All you need to do is send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will get back to your request within a few working days.
If you make an error in donating, be it a one time donation or a regular donation, we can offer you a full refund if you email us within 3 months of making the donation. Just send us an email to email@example.com and we will get back to your request within a few working days.
For recurring donations, our team is available to make changes to your donation at any time -- whether that be to change your donation details, to increase the amount, or decrease it. For one-off donations we ask that you write to us within three days of making the donation for any changes to it. Write to us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
For refunds and cancellation please refer to the point above.
We offer various forms of payment so that everyone can contribute using the payment providers they feel most comfortable with. Different payment providers charge different fees, which will be subtracted from your donation: Sepa Direct Debit: 0,6%, PayPal: 5,2% and credit card: 4,1%
WeMove Europe SCE mbH is registered in Germany with the District Court of Charlottenburg under number GnR 777 B. The legal address is Planufer 91, 10967 Berlin, Germany.
A SCE (societas cooperativa Europaea) is a European Cooperative Society. WeMove is therefore a registered European Cooperative. This legal form aims to facilitate cooperatives'' cross-border and trans-national activities and is required to unite residents from more than one EU country. This means as a legal entity it is recognised at a European level. The reason WeMove SCE is registered in Germany is that it needs to be physically based in one EU country, and that process is simpler in Germany than in other countries, but its status is truly European -- just like the work we do.
For more information on European Cooperative Societies: https://ec.europa.eu/growth/sectors/social-economy/cooperatives/european...
WeMove SCE mbH is audited by the “Prüfungsverband deutscher Konsum- und Dienstleistungsgenossenschaften”.
The financial responsibility of WeMove SCE mbH lies with the Executive Director and the Board of Directors. The Executive Director is Laura Sullivan. The board of Directors are Blanche Shackleton (United Kingdom), Magda Stoczkiewicz (Belgium), Sonia Reines-Djivanides (Belgium) and Gaëtan Vanloqueren (Belgium).
Please note: We have not applied for charitable status for WeMove SCE and therefore do not issue any donation receipts. Following this path we thus reduce administrative costs and ensure political independence. In Germany, but also even more in many other EU countries, charity law limits the work of citizens’ movements like ours that can often be politically uncomfortable.