FICE was founded under the auspices of UNESCO in 1948, at a time when schools, children’s homes and children’s villages had been set up to meet the needs of millions of children displaced or orphaned by World War II.

Many of the children had travelled a long way from their homes in the course of the War, as refugees or transported by Government decision. They were no longer in settled communities, but mixed with children from other countries and cultures, with other languages. It was felt that an international network would help people learn from each other and be able to support each other in their challenging task of creating a positive future for the children.

After World War II many of the European countries have developed economically. The problems presented by children and young people have changed as well, and in response FICE has grown and developed. Originally know as the Fédération des Communautés d’Enfants, it changed its name about twenty years ago in order to reflect changes in emphasis, but it kept the same initials for the sake of continuity of identity.

Throughout its history, there have been FICE National Members in other continents, and Congresses have been held in Africa and North America. Although still largely-Eurocentric, FICE has members in other continents and wishes to develop further so that its membership truly reflects the worldwide services for children and young people.

The Honorary Officers of FICE


Dashenka Kraleva Bulgaria 2010 – present
Monika Niederle Austria 2006 – 2010
Theo Binnendijk Netherlands 2000 – 2006
Robert Soisson Luxembourg 1994 – 2000
Dr. Steen Mogens Lasson Denmark 1988 – 1994
Prof. Heinrich Tuggener Switzerland 1982 – 1988
Raoul Witzberger Belgium 1975 – 1982
Louis Francois France 1970 – 1975
Rene de Cooman Belgium 1950 – 1970
Peggy Volkov United Kingdom 1950
Robert Preaut France 1948 – 1950


Federal councils:

November 2014 Barcelona, Spain
April 2014 Frankfurt, Germany
October 2013 Bern, Switzerland
April 2013 Sofia, Bulgaria
October 2012 Sofia, Bulgaria
May 2012 Israel
October 2011 Bucharest, Romania
April 2011 Prague, Czech Republic
December 2010 Stellenbosch, South Africa
May 2010 Tallinn, Estonia
2009 Ohrid, Macedonia
May 2009 Soro, Denmark
October 2008 Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria
2008 Helsinki, Finland
October 2007 Tel Aviv, Israel
September 2006 Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina 
September 2005 Alba Julia, Romania
September 2004 Glasgow, Scotland
May 2004 Plovdiv, Bulgaria
October 2003 Roskilde, Denmark
April 2003 Moscow, Russia
September 2002 Berlin, Germany
April 2002 Budapest, Hungary
October 2001 Bucharest, Romania


FICE Congresses

FICE usually holds Congresses every two years now. They are the main international events at which it also holds its General Meetings where elections are held for the President and other key international posts. They are usually attended by several hundred delegates from about forty countries. Their programmes include major papers, workshops for smaller groups, visits to services, a chance to meet people and network and opportunities for tourism.

The first Congress was held at Trogen in Switzerland in 1948. In addition to Congresses, FICE-International holds seminars in the countries where Federal Council meetings are held, organised by the National Sections which are acting as hosts. There are also international seminars (such as those run under the auspices of FICE-Europe), expert workshops and working parties on specific subjects.

2013 Bern, Switzerland Ways Toward Inclusion – A Challenge for All of Us!
2012 Beit Berl University College, Israel Care leavers.
2010 Stellenbosch, South Africa Celebrating the courage to care in a diverse world.
2008 Helsinki, Finland Better Future for Children – Today – 60 years of International Cooperation for Children in Care.
2006 Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina Build a positive future despite a difficult past!
2005 Alba Julia, Romania Domestic violence.
2004 Glasgow, Scotland A Place for Children.
2003 Zlatibor, Serbia Expert seminar.
2002 Berlin, Germany In the Jungle of the Cities.
2001 Bucharest, Romania Quality management in the field of child and youth care and family support.
2000 Maastricht, Netherlands The Century of the Child – Changes in the views of (residential) youth care, Retrospect and Perspectives.
1998 Paris, France De la Déclaration universelle des Droits de l’Homme à la Convention internationale des Droits de l’enfant.
1997 Erfurt, Germany “Wenn Erziehung zur Strafe wird…” Zur Verhältnis von Jugendhilfe und Justiz im internationalen Vergleich.
1996 Koopenhagen, Denmark Fostering Cultural Diversity in a Turbulent World: A Challenge for Extrafamilial Care.
1995 Grenoble, France La formation des éducateurs.
1994 Milwaukee, USA Family-centered Child and Youth Care. 
1993 Nova Gorizia, Italy Evacuating Children from Crisis Areas.
1992 Luxembourg Policy-making, Research and Staff Training in Residential Care. 
1990 Prague, Czechoslovakia The changing roles of children, parents, childcare workers… who learns from whom? 
1988 St. Gallen Trogen, Switzerland Born in privacy to live in society? 
1986 Malmö, Sweden Community care inside and outside residential settings. 
1985 Luxembourg, Luxembourg Current problems of young people in institutions in Europe. 
1984 Luminy / Marseilles, France Communautés et culture: Accès à la culture, aux sports et aux loisirs des jeunes en difficulté – Rôle des communautés éducatives. 
1983 Remich, Luxembourg Open negotiations with the Pestalozzi Children’s Village Foundation.
1982 Köszeg, Hungary Heinrich Tuggener (Switzerland) elected President. 
1981 Hadasseh Neurim, Israel Residential education for disadvantaged youth.
1980 Vienna, Austria Der Sozialpädagoge in Europa.
1979 Dublin, Ireland Das Recht aller Kinder im Geiste des Friedens und der Nächstenliebe aufzuwachsen.
1978 Graz, Austria Behinderte Kinder und Jugendliche im Heim – Möglichkeiten der Integration in Familie und Gesellschaft. 
1977 Vienna, Austria Heimerzieherausbildung in Europa. 
1976 Aberdeen, Scotland Integrated caring.
1975 Amsterdam, Netherlands New developments in residential assistance. 
1974 Banjaluka, Yugoslavia Analyse der Möglichkeiten und der Ziele für die Behandlung und Resozialisierung gefährdeter Jugend. 
1973 Paris, France Pre-service and in-service training of teachers and specialized educators in children’s and adolescent’s communities.
1972 Warsaw, Poland Die Vorbereitung zur gesellschaftlichen Eingliederung mancher Kinder mit Entwicklungshemmungen und Behinderungen. 
1971 Königstein, West Germany The child between home, parents and administration.
1970 Budapest, Hungary Child and Youth Welfare in Hungary.
1969 Klemskerke, Belgium Education in children’s communities, for life, through life. 
1968 Trogen, Switzerland Etudes des nouvelles orientations de la FICE. 
1967 Vienna Austria Heimerziehung in Österreich. 
1966 Tabarz, East Germany Die sozialpädagogische Aufgabe der Heimerziehung in der DDR. 
1965 London, England The residential environment: theory and practice.
1964 Ljubljana, Yugoslavia Activity and engagement of youth through children’s communities.
1963 Malmö, Sweden The influence of cultural environment on the adjustment of children and adolescents. 
1962 Prague, Czechoslovakia Das Prinzip der Verbindung von Erziehung und Leben.
1961 Tunis, Tunisia Die Probleme der Kindergemeinschaften in den Entwicklungsländern.
1960 Zurich, Switzerland The silence.
1959 Vienna, Austria Ziel und Methoden der pädagogischen Arbeit im Kinderdorf.
1958 Jerusalem, Israel L’éducation pour le travail et par le travail dans les communautés d’enfants L’éducation individuelle et en groupe dans les communautés d’enfants.
1957 Brighton, England State and independent provision for child care. Is love enough?
1956 Heppenheim West, Germany La mentalité des enfants et des jeunes à la suite de la guerre et de l’aprèsguerre à la lumière des expériences des communautés d’enfants. 
1955 Courcelles, Belgium L’éducation en fonction des droits de l’homme et de l’enfant Les préjugés en éducation. 
1954 Boulouris sur Mer, France Les communautés d’enfants comme solution au problème mondial de l’enfant sans foyer L’apprentissage de la démocratie en communauté d’enfants. 
1953 Coq sur Mer, France L’adolescent ingrat.
1952 Strasbourg, France Le problème de l’éducateur. 
1951 Florence, Italy Les besoins affectifs des enfants sans famille. 
1950 Lyons, France L’éducation de l’enfance inadaptée.
1949 Charleroi, Belgium Les problèmes éducatifs de l’enfance vagabonde.
1948 Trogen/Heiden, Switzerland The education of war-handicapped children.