Diaconie of Schleswig-Holstein
The „Martinshaus“ in Rendsburg, Germany – the Diaconie’s Headquarters / © Diaconie of Schleswig-Holstein
Who we are
Diaconie is the social welfare organisation of Germany’s Protestant churches. We operate independently and across political parties. We respect the dignity and uniqueness of every human being, and work to promote every individual’s right to independence and self-determination.
Diaconie provides aid to people in need of careIn addition, Diaconie advocates on behalf of the underprivileged in politics and society, leading discussions on the causes of poverty and social injustice.
The Diaconie Schleswig-Holstein, based in Rendsburg, is an umbrella organization of diaconal organisations and associations. About 28.000 staff members work in more than 900 facilities, and thousands of volunteers are involved in diaconal activities. As umbrella organization the Diaconie of Schleswig-Holstein represents the interests of its member organisations and offers advice to its members in legal, conceptional, educational and economic matters. It negotiates framework agreements and recruits grants from the EU, federal and regional levels and social lotteries.
Why we are involved in SEMPRE
The Diaconie is a Christian welfare organization and as such social exclusion, poverty and inclusion are core elements of our professional and spiritual life.
For the Diaconie in Schleswig-Holstein SEMPRE is a milestone in different ways. As a first-time Lead Partner we develop organizational capacity, enlarge our transnational cooperation and acquire new professional knowledge. Furthermore, together with our transnational partners we contribute to social innovation for social services, an essential element for the viability of service providers in rural areas.
Empowerment is a tool which initiates processes of self-determination for individuals, organizations and communities, and the Diaconie is most interested in exploring processes which combine these levels. What do people and organisations need in order to become involved and to impact positively on their lives in communities? SEMPRE is going to raise and tackle such questions.
The Diaconie’s focus is on single-parents and together with our partners – transnational and local – we intend to develop coherent empowerment approaches which will facilitate innovative service design and delivery based on single parents’ immediate needs. Single parents are going to become co-producers of services - a new role for them and for service providers. SEMPRE will address the need in capacity and competences, both of single parents and staff of service providers, in order to make empowerment successful.
What will be the most important result of SEMPRE?
One key result that SEMPRE is hopefully bringing about is to tap into the change potential of organizations and to make staff experience this potential positively.
A second key result is connected to the environment of social service provision: SEMPRE will highlight social, economic and political references which are essential for high quality service provision in rural areas.
Whom we are working with
The Diaconie’s regional focus is on Dithmarschen, an area in the West of Schleswig-Holstein. We intend to work with single parents because a former project has shown that in spite of available statistical data, little is known about the real life circumstances of single parents in rural areas. Single parents are usually perceived as a ‘deficit group’, their resources and their expectations are rarely part of the general perception. With the help of empowerment tools and micro-projects we hope to change this stereotype classification and to improve the life quality of single parents who want to be involved in SEMPRE. In order to really impact on people’s lives we intend to involve different kinds of stakeholders such as politicians, local service providers and businesses, self-help and interest groups, parishes and others who work with single parents right from the outset.