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Staff & Associates

Staff are full-time YWAM personnel, while associates can be part-time non-affiliated volunteers, or affiliated with other organisations or movements. We are building a new team and looking for staff and associates to help with organising, publicity, financial management, writing, website management, and event management. Contact

Jeff & Romkje Fountain are the initiators of the Schuman Centre, and after over 40 years living in the Dutch countryside moved in December 2017 to Amsterdam. Romkje was founder of YWAM The Netherlands and chaired the national board until 2013. Jeff was YWAM Europe director for 20 years, 1990-2009. Jeff chaired the annual Hope for Europe Round Table until 2015, while Romkje leads the Women in Leadership network. Jeff is author of Living as People of Hope, Deeply Rooted and other titles, and also writes weekly word, a weekly column on issues relating to Europe. Romkje co-leads the Heritage Tours with Jeff and assists in event management. They have three married sons, and six grandchildren.

Kathia RScreen Shot 2015-01-19 at 14.43.37eynders runs the Schuman Salon in Brussels as a place for good conversations, where some of the big ideas of life and European history can be exchanged in an environment of civility and authenticity. She completed a Masters in Commercial Sciences in Brussels, specialising in International Relations. Having worked briefly in the Financial Services sector as well as Human Resources in multinational organisations, Kathia went on educate others in Business and Economics in both High Schools and University (Antwerp). A study of Environment and Natural Sciences in Iceland for two years gave Kathia an opportunity to understand more of the conflicting world views that underpin policy on complex political issues. That experience, combined with voluntary service with young people searching for meaning and purpose in their own lives, has now led Kathia to undertake a Masters in Christianity and Society in Tilburg University. She is finding this stimulating and challenging.

cedricelina Cedric and Elina Placentino, Finland, have a cross-cultural and international marriage. She is Finnish, but grew up between Finland and England, and while raised in Belgium, he is Italian as reflected in their family name, Placentino. Recently they moved from Belgium with their two young daughters to Elina’s homeland which, as a teenager, she represented at a secular European youth parliament. This planted the idea in her mind of bringing Christian youth together to apply biblical values and perspectives to issues facing Europeans today, such as economics, migration, creation care and international relations. The result is the European Christian Youth Parliament (see

ineta-2Ineta Lansdowne, Riga, Latvia: From Rīga, Latvia, Ineta worked in missions and community development in Southeast Asia from 2004-2016. She completed a course in Reconciliation and Justice Studies in England and has focused on international and interfaith relations in the global and European context. She has participated in various peace building projects in England, Latvia, Thailand, Myanmar and also writes a weekly blog Currently she is pursuing studies in Theology and World Religions at University of Latvia.

mari-blajMari Blaj, Iasi, Romania: Mari holds a degree in Linguistics from the Faculty of Letters and did a master in Mediterranean Culture and Civilization at the Faculty of History, State Univ. of Iasi. In between she also studied Christian Worldview at the College of Humanities and Intl Studies, Univ. of the Nations, Switzerland. Mari worked in publishing before joining the faculty of the College of Humanities and Intl Studies from U. of N. where she teaches causes of poverty and introduction to biblical worldview. The last 15 years she spoke and thought in several countries on 4 continents, from Saint Petersburg to Santiago de Chile, from Prague to Erevan and Bombay. She also served in humanitarian projects in Africa (Mali, 2000 and Tanzania, 2012, 2013, and 2014).
Hobby: ideas, politics, gardening

Lavinia BesliuLavinia Besliu, Iasi, Romania: Lavi has a degree in history and a MD in Intl Relationships at the State Univ. of Iasi, Romania. In 2010-2011 she studied Cultural Studies and Comparative Religious at the College of Humanities and Intl Studies, UofN. The last few years Lavi had been trained in oral history through the Institute of Oral History in Cluj. After her training at UofN she joined ywam Iasi as part-time staff. Lavi keeps teaching history in one of the most appreciated high schools in the city, Richard Wumbrandt College. From 2012 she and Mari initiated the Romanian office of SCES. Besides working with SCES as researcher, she was and still is involved in several research projects using oral history methodology, both in Romania and in North Africa, focused on communism and post-communism, as well as European values in Muslim countries.
Hobby: intl. relations, simple people, education, Tunisia, Tanzania.

Laura MihalyLaura Mihaly, Cluj-Napoça, Romania, is married to Florin and has two children: Sergiu (11) and Andrei (6). Together with her husband she is pioneering a new ministry in Cluj-Napoca, to train Christian leaders living out biblical values in different spheres of society. She teaches in YWAM schools, runs programmes of serving in local public schools and leads a youth group in the local church.



visiting professor


evertvdpollProf Dr Evert Van der Poll

Evert and his wife Yanna are Dutch but have lived in southern France for many years engaged in church planting and academic work. Evert is professor of Religious Studies and Missiology at the Evangelical Theological Faculty in Heverlee, Leuven, Belgium. His book Europe and the Gospel offers an overview of the origins and nature of Europe, relating contemporary European developments to the formative influence of Christianity. The paradox of Europe, he states, is that it is the continent most shaped by the Bible, but also by the rejection of the Bible and its message. Evert has taught the Masterclass with Jeff in Amsterdam, Geneva and Brussels, and has contributed regularly to the State of Europe Forum.