How does JEF work?

about yem icon

YEM is closely affiliated with a number of European organisations.

By becoming a paid member of YEM, you automatically gain all the benefits from being a member of these ones, too!


JEF is present in over 30 countries. Its impressive span means that its structure can be a little daunting at first, but here’s a quick explanation…



yem map




Your local YEM branch

When you join us, you’ll become a member of your local branch or will have the opportunity to create your own. Thanks to YEM’s agreement with the European Movement (EM), you will automatically become a member of the local EM branch, too.



Local YEM sections can expect to be supported by the National Board which will offer materials, advice, and where possible finances to help your local section organise projects. The national level will also help the local sections coordinate with our continental friends and form partnerships across the Channel.


The National Board is elected at annual general meeting. As a paid member of YEM, you have the right to stand and vote in these elections. The National Board cooperates with the European Movement to formulate the growth strategy for both organisations and find new avenues for cooperation. The President of the YEM UK can therefore vote on both the National Council and the National Executive of the European Movement.


JEF Europe

YEM UK is a national section of JEF Europe. This means that all YEM members are welcome to attend International Seminars organised at the European level as well as JEF’s Federal Committees and Congresses as Observers or voters.

JEF’s biannual Congress is the biggest event in the JEF calendar. Here, the political platform of JEF Europe is voted on – most excitingly, elections are held for the JEF Executive Bureau.

JEF’s Bureau is made up of…
A President
Two Vice-Presidents
Four general members
A Treasurer, and
A Secretary-General (a paid post)

Elections are also held for 20 of what are called “directly elected Federal Committee members.” They represent the whole of Europe in the JEF Federal Committee and do not represent a specific national interest.

But who has the vote at these Congresses? JEF uses proportional representation to divide up the votes between national sections. Every section is guaranteed at least one out of the total of 100 votes with a cap on 25 votes for any one national section.

YEM holds two votes at the Congress, one of which must be cast by our International Officer.


JEF also hosts a Federal Committee. This meets in the spring and autumn one year, and then only in the spring of the next (the Congress is held in the autumn). Here, policies are formulated. Every national section has one vote at the Federal Committee, as do each of the 20 people directly elected at the Congress.

The national vote for YEM UK is currently given to the International Officer.

Every two years the Federal Committee elects the new Secretary-General of JEF Europe.


The Executive Bureau is elected biennially at the JEF Congresses. It consists of the President, two Vice-Presidents, four general members, the Treasurer, and the Secretary-General (who is the exception, being elected at an FC). They essentially set the pace and tone of JEF-Europe, leading the organisation through their term and giving support to the whole organisation. The National Board communicates with the Executive Bureau regularly through online Skype sessions and e-mail and occasionally at International Seminars and the FCs and Congresses.



The Secretariat is run by the Secretary-General and is based at the JEF office in Brussels:

Square de Meeûs 25
B-1000, Brussels
Tel: +32 2 512 0053

The Secretariat oversees the administrative running of JEF including everything from the website to ensuring that organisation is working efficiently.


The Arbitration Board is a mechanism put in place to settle disputes between National Sections and within National Sections when an internal settlement cannot be reached. A simple-majority verdict by the Arbitration Board is final, but will hopefully never be needed!


Finally, JEF’s Auditors Committee – which is composed of 3 members – checks the organisations accounts and reports on them to the Federal Committee at least once a year.

Any questions? Just ask us!

To receive JEF Europe news direct to your inbox, why not subscribe to JEF’s newsletter?