DAFNE is an informal network gathering donors and foundations associations in Europe with the aim of providing a platform to share knowledge and learn from best practices. With 25 member associations with a collective membership of more than 7,500 foundations and grant-makers, DAFNE underpins individual activities of its members by encouraging dialogue and collaboration between the national associations. Each DAFNE member individually serves public benefit foundations and other donors at national level: their roles and services vary from country to country.

The diversity among the various DAFNE members brings the opportunity to gain different perspectives, enrich each association by learning from peers’ experiences and get to know the wider European context. DAFNE creates an effective mechanism for Europe-wide collaboration; exchange of know how; and the creation of a pool of knowledge at the level of the DAFNE network among philanthropy support organisations.


DAFNE provides a collective voice for Foundations thus supporting the representative role that Associations play at national level. DAFNE works with two main strategic partners EFC and WINGS to strengthen the voice and representation of the philanthropic sector at European and global levels.


DAFNE provides for:

  • exchanging national experience
  • networking opportunities and encouraging joint projects and initiatives
  • promoting donors best practices at EU level
  • supporting advocacy effort at national, EU, and global levels
  • defining common positions on legal and fiscal issues
  • data collection, consolidation and analysis


DAFNE members are national association that share DAFNE objectives and agree on working together within the DAFNE framework. DAFNE has a membership fee system based on solidarity, flexibility and trust. Members can set their own fee and offer an additional contribution on a voluntary basis.



DAFNE is currently chaired by Felix Oldenburg, from the Association of German Foundations.

Felix Oldenburg studied philosophy, politics and music at the universities of Bonn, Tübingen and Oxford and holds a postgraduate degree in Policy and Non-Profit Management from Georgetown University. In 1998 he co-founded an online start-up based on the non-profit introduction of one of Germany’s first social networks. From 2000 to 2002 he worked at McKinsey & Company in London as strategy consultant. Felix Oldenburg was Managing Director of Ashoka Europe for seven years before joining the Association of German Foundations as Director General in April 2016.

Felix Oldenburg is a fervent supporter of a strong civil society and believes in the power of innovations and ideas.

He is supported by a Steering Committee comprising Magdalena Pekacka – Polish Donors Forum, Beate Eckhardt – Swiss Foundations, and Beatrice de Durfort– Centre Francais des Fonds et Fondations. The Steering Committee is responsible for:

  • making policy and activity proposals to the membership
  • setting the agenda for the ongoing year and overseeing the implementation of a work programme
  • overseeing and monitoring the DAFNE budget
  • supervising the Coordinating Director