Person Centred Blog

20th anniversary of PCE Europe in 2018 and a restart of the network in 2019

20th anniversary of PCE Europe in 2018 and a restart of the network in 2019

In September 2018 "PCE Europe – Network of the European Associations for Person-Centred and Experiential Psychotherapy and Counselling" should have celebrated its 20th birthday, but the date passed unnoticed, there was not a big party! Only a few months earlier, in July 2018, the General Assembly in Vienna, failed to elect a new board and it became evident that PCE Europe might not survive its 20th anniversary.

There was no reason to celebrate!

There were various reasons for the apparent apathy and 'burnout'. PCE Europe started in Luxembourg, with 15 partners, and since then has developed into a strong network of 31 organisations in 15 different countries from many parts of Europe. Membership extends from the United Kingdom to Cyprus, and from Portugal to Russia. During the past decade, the biannual meetings of the General Assembly were combined with a Symposium. During these days person-centred professionals, from many parts of Europe, gathered to learn from another and exchange their ideas, but above all everyone enjoyed being in contact and having fun with like-minded people.

PCE Europe's members were reluctant to accept this undignified end of the network, without an attempt to reverse their fortunes, and a 'task force' was formed. The 'task force' was established in September 2018, with the job of providing a basis for PCE Europe's realignment, making it more attractive to its members and hopefully leading it into a fruitful future. Eight colleagues from 7 different countries joined the task force and met regularly on Skype. A person-centred mindset and a desire for European cooperation unified these people, who were of Austrian, British, German, Greek, Romanian, Russian, Scottish and Swiss origin. Their task was to prepare the groundwork for the next General Assembly, which was in Warsaw on 10 May 2019, and create a map for the association's future.

The Warsaw General Assembly was successful and heralded the relaunch of the European Network. An international Board was elected: Leonore Langner, Austria (Chair), Allan Turner, UK (Treasurer), Tito Laneiro, Portugal (EAP contact), Mihaela Bonatiu, Romania (Certificate Coordinator), Gaby Pierre Chami, Switzerland (Social Media Manager), Dimitris Portokalis, Greece (PR Officer).

The mission statement of PCE Europe was expanded and renewed, to make the network more tangible and attractive for its members. PCE Europe is seeking to register as an NGO (as is WAPCEPC), and a working group was established to determine the best jurisdiction for registration. We agreed to update, and enhance, the network's connection to WAPCEPC and to work closely together. The next European Symposium will be in Romania in 2021, and we hope that the event guidelines, prepared by the 'task force' will assist the organisers in their work.

New ideas were explored, which means that the new Board have a lot of working on its 'to do list'. There is a new momentum from the new Board, and they will value a strong network of support people who are ready to step up and contribute to PCE Europe's development.

Summary written by Simone Anderhub, Leonore Langner, Allan Turner.Contact: Leonore Langner | Address:

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