Affiliate Pages|IFWEA Executive Committee

Our Vision

A world where all working people have access to lifelong learning opportunities which enable them to claim and exercise their inalienable democratic rights, responsibilities and freedoms as global citizens.


Our Aim

To Build a Global Knowledge Community which facilitates global co-operation between worker educators so as to advance the frontiers of knowledge, education methodology and practises of democratic worker organisations promoting freedom, justice and equality for all. 




IFWEA's Youth Globalisation Awareness Programme (YGAP) took place at the Secretariat in Cape Town South Africa from Sunday 30th October to Saturday 12th November 2016. The Nordic School and the Foundation Leadership Skills School are based at the Secretariat at Community House in Salt River, and produced "Postcrads from the South" telling of their experiences.


 ▶️ Join us on Facebook to view  photographs on the activities during the


 ▶️ View the "Postcards from the South on IFWEA's You Tube channel

IFWEA Affiliate and Secretariat News

GLOBAL / SOUTH AFRICA: IFWEA Executive Committee Meeting, November 2016

IFWEA's Executive Committee members met in Cape Town, South Africa. In this picture Dr Moenieba Isaacs from the Programme for Land and Agrarian Studies at the University of the Western Cape addresses the Executive Committee on jobs, quotas and food security in the fishing industry of the South Africa. The EC also went on a field trip to meet leaders of Coastal Links and Masifundise Development Trust.

INDIA: StreetNet holds its 5th International Congress in India

StreetNet "9 countries , 150 delegates. The StreetNet Congress was about delegates, policies and election of leaders. All this was made possible , and held together by an amazing group of people who quietly worked 24/7 to make this happen."

IRELAND: report from President Sue Schurman and General Secretary Sahra Ryklief

Their trip included meetings with: ▸ The Peoples College - Here adult and workers' education is supported by the Irish Trade Union Congress and most of the national unions. ▸ Unite the Union - with Jimmy Kelly, Irish Regional Secretary for- learning about their work like the "Right2Water campaign", along with Dr. Maura Adshead from the University of Limerick.

SOUTH AFRICA / SWEDEN - IFWEA SECRETARIAT welcomes Olof Palme International Center (OPIC) Intern Frida Sundqvist

"Frida Sundqvist is our new intern from the International Center of Olof Palme in Sweden. Frida is 29 years old and has a Bachelor and Master’s degree in political science from Uppsala University, including an exchange semester at Science Po Paris. Her working experience includes for instance, the Swedish Migration Agency, the Swedish Permanent Representation in Brussels and being a research assistant at Uppsala University. She also has a background within the Swedish Social Democratic labour movement, where she’s been having several committments and roles throughout the years. Her passion is mainly about labour and welfare studies, the trade union movement, globalization effects, gender and civil society. She will stay with us at IFWEA until December 2016."

GLOBAL: "REPORT on "International Ministerial Meeting on Education Sector Responses to Violence Based on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity/Expression" by Louise Walsh

Louise Walsh is Founder and Chair of the Berger-Marks Foundation. 'Elin Lilijenbladh, board member of the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer Youth and Student Organization (IGLYO) advocated “a non-critical approach to sex education: “We don’t have to be the same to be equal.”

SOUTH AFRICA: Labour Research Service (LRS) celebrates its 30th anniversary and holds a National Workshop on Collective Agreements"

"The LRS' anniversary and workshop was attended by unions from the agricultural, higher education, mining and postal services sectors. The workshop analysed the framework for collective bargaining, and celebrated the victories unions have made in these sectors recently.'

SOUTH AFRICA via GroundUp: IFWEA General Secretary Sahra Ryklief writes on "South Africa’s 2016 municipal elections – why the excitement? An in-depth analysis of the results."

'It is nearly three weeks since the South African electorate voted in the fourth municipal elections since 1996. The municipal elections are normally a quiet affair, without much fanfare or high profile post-electoral analysis. The aftermath of this year’s elections turned out to be anything but quiet, due to a number of milestones which have some significance in South Africa’s maturing democracy.'

SOUTH AFRICA "National Women's Day"

"General Secretary Sahra Ryklief was asked to do the key note address at the Congress of South African Trade Unions' (COSATU)'s Women's Day event held at Community House in Cape Town South Africa, where the Secretariat is based. Those who attended included gender representatives from member unions - educators, members and office bearers. Community members and associates of the labour movement also attended. The gathering honoured veterans of the labour movement - Hester Stephens and Lynn Carneson. COSATU in the Western Cape also honoured outgoing educator Mike Louw for his years of service."

SOUTH AFRICA: IFWEA welcomes affiliate member Ditsela's new director

IFWEA's programme manager Saliem Patel welcomed the new executive director of Ditsela, Ntsilo Molumaelea. Ditsela is a South African affiliate, and the Secretariat staff attended their first 'Western Cape Educators' Forum' for this year.

EGYPT via Center for Trade Union and Workers' Services [CTUWS] CTUWS launches new website

"On its website CTUWS is trying to open a window onto the Egyptian labour movement and highlight its events, presenting their news and presenting its issues and dilemmas with the hope of developing its services to meet more labour needs."

USA via Sunshine Publishing: "In Motion" by Andy Piascik NEW RELEASE

"In Motion, first and foremost, is a story of solidarity: the solidarity of two sisters, the solidarity of the sisters and their mother, the solidarity of the multi-racial residents of a city under siege. Most of all, In Motion is the story of the solidarity of Jackie and Jack, two passionate lovers on the cusp of adulthood seeking to live authentically."

IFWEA's Second Quarter e-bulletin of 2016 Issue 33 "Labour Solidarity Has No Borders"

In this e-bulletin: ▶ IFWEA SECRETARIAT NEWS ▶IFWEA PROGRAMME DEVELOPMENTS ▶ AFFILIATE NEWS HIGHLIGHTS ▶ SOLIDARITY IN ACTION: Check out the campaigns where you can take online action, view research and download resources.

SOUTH AFRICA via Popular Education: "Colloquium on Forging Solidarity: Southern Perspectives of Popular Education, 9 - 11 June 2016"

IFWEA Secretariat's Saliem Patel and Erna Curry attended this two day workshop. "Some fifty people gathered at the colloquium which was held at the Sustainability Institute, Stellenbosch. Participants came from different organisations, including academic institutions, government, social movements and NGOs, from as far away as Chile, India, Senegal and Canada and as close as Delft, Khayelitsha and Grahamstown. They brought with them focus, energy and willingness to be creative, and a commitment to engage with critical questions both on a one on one basis, around tables, and in plenary sessions. The aims of the colloquium were to grapple with the central theme and in the process give food for thought to 20 people who are contributing chapters to a book of the same name. Presentations were made, in the main, by contributors to the forthcoming book."


The IFWEA Secretariat and Labour Research Service hosted a solidarity visit from General Secretary Manuel Cortes and President Mick Carney from Transport Salaried Staff Association (TSSA), an affiliate of IFWEA member International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF)

FINLAND: YGAP Nordic School - Annual 2016 Meeting

YGAP Co-ordinators Niklas Skeppar from ABF Sweden and Katri Söder from TSL Finland had their annual meeting with former Finnish YGAPpers in Kirkkonummi. Present was Jenni Pilaste, Serveh Khalili, Milla Granlund, Rami Lindström, Tiina Vesa and Maria Nyroos.

EUROPE / SWEDEN: IFWEA Executive Committee Meeting

IFWEA Executive Committee Members have held their first meeting of 2016 in Gothenburg, Sweden.

GLOBAL "May Day greeting from the IFWEA Secretariat"

"On behalf of the Executive Committee of IFWEA and the staff of the Secretariat, I wish to greet all our affiliates and the trade unions and worker associations they partner with and wish them success with their Mayday activities.On this historic day, I would also like to draw your attention to, and call on your support for the IFWEA resolution on Resourcing Workers Education, adopted at our 22nd General Conference in Lima in December 2015."

IFWEA Stands in Global Solidarity against Terror attacks: Message from General Secretary Sahra Ryklief, Editorials by IFWEA affiliate members Solidar in Belgium and LEF in Pakistan

General Secretary Sahra Ryklief reaffirmed IFWEA's approach of workers' education to build a democratic global society against extremism in a message to IFWEA affiliates in Pakistan and Belgium citing the Emergency Resolution Against Terrorism that was adopted in 2015 at its 22nd General Conference in Lima, Peru: “It is a great relief to know that you and your staff are safe after the shocking events. Our thoughts are with you and all in Belgium and Pakistan."

SOUTH AFRICA IFWEA and Shoprite Checkers UNI Alliance Meeting at Community House

photographs via FES Trade Union Competence Centre Sub-Sahara Africa -TUCC

ASIA: NEPAL, PAKISTAN and HONG KONG affiliates CLASS Nepal, Labour Education Foundation (LEF) and Asia Monitor Resource Centre (AMRC) Meeting

Director of LEF Khalid Mahmood and Executive Secretary General of CLASS Nepal Tilak Jang Khadka report on this regional meeting

Weekly Labour News

INDIA "How Bonded Labor Fuels India’s Garment Industry" by Leon Kaye

'India’s garment industry is a $100 billion powerhouse, with $40 billion worth of textiles and garments exported annually. It is the country’s second largest sector after agriculture, employing at least 45 million workers directly, it and contributes to the economic livelihood of at least another 60 million Indians.'

KOREA via The Morning Star "General Strike in South Korea Demands Impeach President" by

'The embattled leader has been resisting calls to step down amid an ongoing political crisis that has rocked her presidency and united Koreans in disapproval and outrage. Millions of people have poured into the streets across the country over the past weeks.

CHINA " 20,000 Walmart Workers in China Organize One of the Country’s Biggest Strikes Using WeChat"

'Eli Friedman, a labor scholar at Cornell University, told the New York Times in an interview that the Walmart movement was “probably the most substantive example of sustained, cross-workplace, independent worker organizing we’ve ever seen in China’s private sector.”'

GLOBAL via The Guardian: "Economic frustration has spawned Trump and Brexit, warns UN labour chief" by Katie Allen

"Politicians around the world risk giving more traction to nationalistic movements if they continue to ignore the growing numbers of workers getting a “raw deal” from globalisation, the head of the UN’s labour agency has warned. The director general of the International Labour Organization (ILO), Guy Ryder, described Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election and the UK’s vote for Brexit as “the revolt of the dispossessed” and gave a damning assessment of the establishment’s failure to offer an alternative to protectionism."

UK via Equal Times: "Radical reforms are needed to protect workers’ rights in the UK" by Carolyn Jones

'The Institute for Employment Rights (IER) – an independent, UK think tank - has put forward detailed policy proposals to reform UK labour law. A Manifesto for Labour Law: towards a comprehensive revision of workers’ rights represents a timely intervention to tackle low pay, extreme wage inequality, and job insecurity whilst promoting a stable and productive economy.'

GLOBAL: "Make People > Profits: UN Special Rapporteur" by Kate Conradt

'Millions of workers in the global economy have been disenfranchised from their rights, either tacitly or deliberately by governments, exacerbating “global inequality, poverty, violence and child and forced labor,” says Maina Kiai, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of assembly and of association, in a frank report presented last week to the United Nations General Assembly in New York.'

HONDURAS: "2 Honduran Rights Activists Killed, More Threatened" by Carolyn Butler

'The leader of a rural land rights organization and a fellow activist were killed in recent days in the northern Honduran department of Colόn, and other activists report escalating threats and intimidation. José Angel Flores, head of MUCA (Unified Campesino Movement of the Aguán), and MUCA activist Silmer Dionisio George were shot by four men as they left a meeting on Oct. 18.'

TURKEY "Turkey: 90 journalists in jail - have your say!" International Federation of Journalists (IFJ)

'The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) will launch a global solidarity action on 21 October in support of journalists in Turkey and its affiliates the Journalists’ union of Turkey (TGS), the Progressive Journalists’ Association (PJA) and the Association of journalists of Turkey (TGC).'

QATAR via Guardian: "Fifa faces legal challenge over Qatar migrant workers" by Owen Gibson

"Fifa is facing legal action in the Swiss courts over its alleged complicity in the mistreatment of migrant workers in Qatar ahead of the 2022 World Cup, the Guardian can reveal. But the legal challenge, brought by the Netherlands Trade Union Confederation (FNV) on behalf of a Bangladeshi migrant worker called Nadim Sharaful Alam, is the first time that Fifa has been made directly accountable in the Swiss courts."

PALESTINE: "Trade union head says labor laws don’t protect Gaza's workers" by Rasha Abou Jalal Contributor, Palestine Pulse

'In an interview with Al-Monitor, Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions head Sami al-Amasi discusses working conditions in the Gaza Strip, in light of growing poverty and increasing unemployment levels.'

COLOMBIA: "War, art and peace: about the Colombian referendum and the peace agreement" by Adriana Ruiz-Restrepo

"Colombia is a country of contrasts. It positions itself as the happiest in the world, but has been trapped in a state of war for over fifty years. Located in the corner of South America, its north and west are bounded by two oceans whilst the south and east are home to the Amazon rainforest and the Eastern Plains.'

GLOBAL: "Financing Development: A Business Opportunity For The Rich" by Tania Romero

'Helping developing countries escape poverty represents a big opportunity for businesses and economic interests in rich countries. State-owned or part state-owned development finance institutions (DFIs) are in charge of channelling towards the private sector part of the official funds intended to aid less advantaged countries. But the benefits of these public-private projects in developing countries remain unclear.'