ROTER BAUM BERLIN UG – ZENTRALE – (GERMANY)
The “Roter Baum” Berlin UG is a nongovernmental organization in youth services. The non-profit company was established by the youth association “Roter Baum” in 2011 and operates since then all projects of the Roter Baum in Berlin. It operates three facilities. The youth centre “Anna Landsberger,” family center “Buntes Haus” and the “zentrale” a small facility which is the home to various participation and youth culture projects and which is administratively hosting European “ORA Network”. We currently have 10 fixed recruited, supported by 4 volunteers in EVS.
We also organize various projects in the areas of political education, international youth work and youth culture in Germany and also in other countries around Europe and Mediterranean region (geographically and politically).
Our local work takes places in a rural environment of Berlin which is characterized by a huge unemployment especially among young people. For instance in area of our community centre “Buntes Haus” lives 70% of people who are less than 15 years old receive social aid by the state. From the total number of inhabitants of our district it is 50% in that social area (neighborhood). The family center “Buntes Haus” which faces this problems most, is dealing with families which are coming with this background and educate them in organizing family life, health, nutrition, reading and recreation.
Youth centre “Anna Landsberger” is typical german-type youth centre. It works in fields of music, arts, sports, new environmental education, political education and participation / youth involvement.
Roter Baum Berlin has a very close cooperation with other branches of Roter Baum, which contains street work, youth centers, educational centers and international youth work.
In all our projects we work in accordance with self-perception of the parent organization:
“We are multifaceted and creatively active, in order to educate young people, provide them with competences and promote our values.
We deeply believe that every individual is valuable and has to have a chance to realize their own potential regardless of their ethnic, social, and cultural background. Therefore, we are interested in each person and threat him or her with respect.
We want to discern the world in order to apply the acquired knowledge to the benefit of people and nature.
We verify our actions and define our goals for the future in the knowledge of the successes and mistakes of our ancestors.
We know that this society deprives thenatural and social livelihoods of many people and we fight for this reason active against existing injustices.
We are confident that we can improve the world through our actions.
We want to be a cultural, social and political home for young people.”
Roter Baum is deeply rooted in local networks, such as neighborhood network of social and youth workers in 2 regions, the quality developing network of youth centres and municipaility and quarter management. Roter Baum is member of ORA Network.
Tilo Kießling and Martin Kleinfelder are members of the Youth and children services trust (Tilo in Dresden, Martin in Marzahn-Hellersdorf).
Roter Baum Berlin has long term experience in diverse fields of youth work and international cooperation. In city of Berlin district Marzahn-Hellersdorf our organization staff is administratively running three centres, hosting one international network of organization, taking care of education and integration of minorities (mostly young people) from our district which is known as international. First of all we are running a large youth centre, which has as main goal the non formal education of young people, to participate in decision making processes and involve them in community life for rising active citizenship. Same goals we have in the family centre we run too. Both has of one field they work specialized the education in environment and sustainability in ecologic meaning. These centres are leaded by professionals for social work and education who have long time experience in youth non formal work and integration. They do not working with target group only but also with stakeholders of projects. In this way cooperation with writers and university professors is normal and necessary.
According to the target groups need they are adapting new trends in education, integration, life styles and by them working with target groups. This places and it capacities are also excellent “playground” for international project which capacities we are usually using during international project hosting in Berlin. Other issue very important for this project especially for conference action is that Internationale Gartenausstellung – IGA entrance is next to youth centre which our organization is leading. In this way support of the organization will be given during conference not only to the IGA as local partner but also to the Conference activities.
Also we are running since more than 10 years now youth exchanges, training, study visits and seminars. The youth exchanges are always product orientated, because we are sure, that this helps youth to become involved in the project and it is also helping development of new tools and methods in future. That means that we use the creation of product mainly as tool for intercultural learning and developing social skills of youth. These projects we had implemented not only in Germany but also in many of our partners countries. We find very important collaboration with partners and development of collaboration, skills, trust between each other. By this experience and collaboration we our staff persons gather big experience in project implementation in different countries all around the world.
By hosting and implementing so many projects during the years our pedagogues and educators had become experts in non-formal learning methods and in usage of existing as well as new, projects and needs adapted (some methods who are general or the way of it implementation was good and successful our staff was using for different topics, with different inputs for the different kinds of educations and in this way developed methods goal focused) methodologies. We also have staff persons who are coming from so called “EVS International team”, some of them previous volunteers whose experience in integration, lifelong learning process, 8 key competences of lifelong learning, trans generational learning is important and in the same way crucial for integration in general as the same as for education of individual. Also, our organization had one of key role in preparation for registration of European ORA Network. Because of our administrative and professionals capacities, in cooperation with our partners we had prepared information, procedures, regulations, standards which are requested for registration of the Network. Following this our organization is hosting ORA Network and it also helping and provides necessary support to it for administrative, logistical issues.
We mention here also the close cooperation with Alice Salomon Hochschule (University for applied science). We agreed with Professor Wedekind, who will be involved in this project and who is expert for participation of youth, nature science learning and evaluation of nature science methods, to support us in content and provide professorial assistance.
A good presentation about youth services (much more than youth work) is published here: