Society

Youth and Democracy

Jugend und Demokratie
The low election turnout, particularly by young people, and surveys such as the Shell Youth Study make it clear that many young people are not interested in politics or party politics. They seem to sense a distance between their own world and the greater political system and believe that they have no way of influencing this system, thus refusing to participate in it.
We therefore wish to give people – particularly young people – the courage to take on positions of responsibility in society and stand up for their interests. To achieve this goal, we established the Youth and Democracy focus area in 2009.
Our focus is on determining suitable ways of reaching people, particularly disinterested young people, in the reality of their lives. In doing so, we focus less on teaching specialized knowledge or on classic institutional education, and instead more on changing attitudes, strengthening people’s ability to act democratically, and on dealing with fundamental issues of interacting with one another in society.
Be it in school, in a soccer stadium, or in new media channels – using a wide variety of projects and new methods, we want to raise an awareness of sociopolitical topics in young people and foster political involvement as well as support activities carried out against extremism and animosity toward specific groups.
We are active in the following projects
Dialog Sets Precedents

Dialog Sets Precedents

Young people get interested in political issues through a discussion process lasting several months, guided by dialog facilitators, and are supported in developing an awareness of democracy and participation in society.

 
Jugend debattiert - Youth Debating Competition

Jugend debattiert - Youth Debating Competition

Center of the project are competitions on different levels between pupils while they learn to debate. Debating means adopting a point of view, stating your reasons, and expressing criticism, whether competitively or constructively.

 
Learning in Stadiums - Civic Education at Learning Centers in Soccer Stadiums

Learning in Stadiums - Civic Education at Learning Centers in Soccer Stadiums

We fund twelve so called learning stadiums in Germany for civic education with young people.

 
Rückgrat – Backbone Against Right-Wing Extremism

Rückgrat – Backbone Against Right-Wing Extremism

Many people active in youth social work are helpless in the battle against heterogeneity and the attitudes of group-focused enmity. With this project, we want to strengthen and train them for their daily work.

 
Strong Teachers – Strong Students

Strong Teachers – Strong Students

We support vocational teachers in dealing with right wing extremism amoung their pupils. Through the teachers, the pupils are emboldened to reflect their opinions.

 
Symposium: Civic Education in New Media

Symposium: Civic Education in New Media

What opportunities and challenges do new media offer for civic education? And how does civic education need to be designed to survive online?

 
The Media Initiative YOU HAVE THE POWER

The Media Initiative YOU HAVE THE POWER

With this initiative, our aim from 2010 until 2015 was to primarily reach young people who are not targeted by the conventional offers of political education and, in turn, to motivate them to give more thought to topics of a political nature.

 
TINCON

TINCON

The TINCON stands for "teenageinternetwork convention" and is the first festival for digital youth culture. For three days young people participate in workshops, talks, and events about their (not only) digital present and future.

 
Youth Against Extremism

Youth Against Extremism

Extremism has many different forms and in times of changes within society continues to be a big challenge. Many young people already get involved in our democratic society and speak out against extremism. We offer them support in this area.

 
Related projects of the Foundation
Campaigns for an Open Society

Campaigns for an Open Society

We support projects that strengthen social cohesion and the feeling of unity; advocate for tolerance, diversity, and democracy; and take a stance against political radicalization and hate.

 
Foundation for German-Russian Youth Exchange

Foundation for German-Russian Youth Exchange

Young adults, teachers and youth exchange specialists can find relevant offers here on language support, professional training and educational or extracurricular exchanges between Germany and the Russian Federation

 
Get Together! Strengthening Dialog between Refugees and Local Communities

Get Together! Strengthening Dialog between Refugees and Local Communities

Prejudices are dispelled where there is direct contact between refugees and the local population. We support projects that initiate on-site meetings between local populations and refugees on an equal footing.

 
Initiative Going Abroad Makes a Difference

Initiative Going Abroad Makes a Difference

We are looking for strategies and ideas to improve the framework conditions for international student and youth exchanges so that every young person in Europe gets the chance to gain international experience.

 
Let’s Have a Say in Local Politics

Let’s Have a Say in Local Politics

Get involved! Have your say! Help decide! We are supporting young people in Baden-Württemberg who want to get involved in their local area and take part in political decision-making processes.

 
Media - Mediators Between Nations

Media - Mediators Between Nations

In cooperation with the Berliner Journalisten-Schule, we organize a three-month fellowship program for journalists for Journalists from Central and Eastern Europe and from Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

 
Participation in Day Care Centers

Photo: GettyImages/BraunS

Participation in Day Care Centers

The participation of children is an important quality factor for the work of Day Care Centers.

 
Study: Global Responsibility, Internationalization, and Interculturality in Schools (GLOBIS)

Study: Global Responsibility, Internationalization, and Interculturality in Schools (GLOBIS)

The aim of the research project is to gain an overview of school strategies in dealing with globalization, identify conducive and obstructive conditions, and develop approaches for global learning.

 
UWC Robert Bosch College

UWC Robert Bosch College

An old monastery in Freiburg has become an international school – the first United World College (UWC) in Germany. A high school for students from all over the world.

 
Yallah! Dedicated Young Muslims

Yallah! Dedicated Young Muslims

We fund projects carried out by young Muslims and support creative ideas that show just how diverse "our Islam" is in Germany.