Starting in November 2009, Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) will award three people with a Fellowship grant every month for the coming year. Everybody who is actively working for Free Software but cannot afford the Fellowship contribution can apply for the grant.
Despite financial constraints many people in the Free Software community devote a great deal of their time to Free Software activities. For example programming, translating, administrating, organising events, giving talks or advocating Free Software principles at public events. FSFE has now found a way to recognise their efforts and let them become part of the Fellowship.
Matthias Kirschner, FSFE's Fellowship coordinator, says: "The Fellowship is the primary way people can identify with and support FSFE. It has always consisted of three aspects: financial support, political weight, and active engagement. We are offering the Fellowship grant for people who have shown their dedication to the cause of Free Software. We won't allow financial problems to hold anyone back from becoming part of the Fellowship community."
The Fellowship grant is made possible by FSFE's supporters. Thanks to a generous donation from tarent GmbH, FSFE is finally able to offer the Fellowship grant to Free Software activists as a reward for exceptional work. Thanks to these donations, 36 new Fellows will be joining the Fellowship over the next 12 months.
Elmar Geese, CEO at tarent GmbH says: "We grew closer to the Fellowship of FSFE since some of our employees are already Fellows. We know that being a Fellow is a great way to become involved with FSFE and make a real difference for Free Software. We are glad that our contribution will allow other enthusiastic people to become part of the Fellowship."
Dedicated Free Software supporters can apply for a Fellowship grant by writing an e-mail to email@example.com, explaining what they are doing to promote Free Software. Each month, FSFE will select outstanding candidates and announce the decisions at the beginning of the following month.