Interview of the Month: REFH (08/2019)

Every month, for you, EPWS presents the characteristics and activities of one Member Association.

Read all the previous Interviews with our Members here

Our member for August is the French association REFH: Réussir l’Égalité Femmes-Hommes (Achieving Gender Equality).



Nicole Fouché (EHESS -School of Higher Studies in Social Sciences, Paris, France and CNRS-National Centre for Scientific Research, Paris, France) has accepted to answer the EPWS questionnaire.

Contact this association:

Contact this member:

Association website:



EPWS: If you wanted to describe your association in one sentence, what would you say?

Our priority objective is to raise awareness of gender equality among young people in training girls and boys, from an early age, so that this concept can be subsequently implemented at all stages of their lives, in all fields (personal and professional, social, economic and political).


EPWS: What are the objectives of your association?

Alert and act, women and men together, against all forms of gender-based discriminations and inequalities. REFH’s main field of action – but not exclusive – is education, from kindergarten to higher education and research. At all levels: local, national and international.

Act to have women’s skills recognized and promoted in order to increase their role and decision-making power in personal, professional, social and public life.


EPWS: What is the history of REFH, in a few words?

REFH was created in 2013. We immediately set up an intervention program in schools, middle schools and high schools. We have been accredited by the Paris and Créteil Academies (national education districts near Paris)…  Sometimes we intervene in other French regions.

We have joined the network of the French Coordination for the European Women’s Lobby. The latter represents us in Brussels to European decision-makers. When it is necessary we make, via the French coordination, the link between EPWS positions and the European Women’s Lobby.


EPWS: Could you explain the organisation of your association?

It is a very classic French non-profit association (1901 Law) made up of volunteers;  national recruitment;  with a decision-making board:  a president, two vice-presidents, a secretary general and a treasurer who constitute the Executive Committee.  About fifty members pay a membership fee of 30 €. A general meeting is convened each year. Our members represent all academic disciplines and professional fields, with a slight advantage at the decision-making board level for the social sciences.


EPWS: What are its recent achievements?

The FLOT/MOOC “Being in charge tomorrow: training for gender equality” is still relevant.

We produced a critical paper on the place of women in the latest (2016) national history curricula and history textbooks for secondary schools.

With the French Coordination for the European Women’s Lobby we organized a debate (12 April 2019, Town Hall, 75014-Paris) on The European Union and Women. Presentation of Françoise Thébaud’s book, Europa, an opportunity for women ? Gender and European construction (2019) by Françoise Thébaud, Gwénaëlle Perrier and Geneviève Fraisse. This seminar was intended for academics, students, community activists and the general public.


Poster made for our association by girls and boys from a secondary school class of Lycée Marie-Laurencin, 91542-Mennecy, in Versailles region.
Title: When pregnancy weighs heavily
Comments: from top to bottom
1) You will be dismissed when you return from your maternity leave.
2) She was denied the promised position.
3) Your fixed-term contract will not be renewed.


EPWS: What is your agenda for the coming months?

Olympic Games 2024: We will take advantage of the fact that the next Olympic Games will take place in Paris (2024) to raise young girls’ awareness of sport, encourage them to participate in competitions and work with them on the values of the Olympic Charter, namely gender equality, universalism and secularism. We have a partnership with the National Union of Physical Education Teachers (United Trade Union Federation).


EPWS: Are you collaborating with other EPWS members?

We very closely follow all the activities of the French  Femmes & Sciences (Women and Science) association, attend (or even participate in) their conferences and sometimes collaborate in some of their field actions, and vice versa. Many members have the two memberships (Women and Science and Achieving Gender Equality).

We also worked together (and others French associations) to build the MOOC  “Being in charge tomorrow: training for gender equality” (supra n° 5).


EPWS: What do you expect from EPWS? In what ways can it help you develop your action?

Networking, exchange of information, news, ideas…; expertise on university and scientific models or political systems different from our French one; contacts, solidarity, interventions at the level of the European Union…

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