About the Roma Education Fund

The Roma Education Fund (REF) is an international foundation established in 2005 and dedicated to closing the gap in educational outcomes between Roma and non-Roma. With an active and growing network of representative offices across Central, Eastern, South Eastern Europe and Turkey, REF provides grants and scholarships to entities and individuals who share its belief in quality, inclusive education and desegregated schools and classrooms.


We aspire to live in a world in which the right to education is regarded as undeniable for every Roma child and youth, and educational opportunities and practices are equitable for all.


REF’s mission and ultimate goal is to contribute to closing the gap in educational outcomes between Roma and non-Roma. In order to achieve this, the organization supports policies and programs that ensure quality education for Roma, including the desegregation of education systems.


In order to develop and deliver our education programs that provide quality, inclusive education for Roma children and youth, we believe in five core values that join us together and that mirror the work, actions and ideals of our organization and its culture:


We need to work hard and not give up if we are to remain forward-looking and optimistic about the changes we want to achieve, both within the society and within REF. We hope to inspire this value in our beneficiaries, as well as in our partners with whom we collaborate.


We need to display outwardly what we expect from each other and of others. Moral and ethical principles guide us in what we do and in the feedback that we seek from others. We demand it from our partners and scholarship recipients, too.


Learning requires that we seek evidence, including disconfirming evidence, to support decisions that we and our stakeholders make. Good quality research and advocacy require that we ask the hard questions of ourselves and of others.


We operate with transparent procedures and are ready to disclose results and share information with the public, our donors, and beneficiaries.


Education is a right, essential for the development and achievement of one’s full potential.