BAG RelEx members
BAG RelEx was founded by 25 non-profit organisations in November 2016; presently the organisation has 31 members from all over Germany. Their target groups and approaches are varied, and they cover a wide variety of challenges. Members’ work can roughly be divided into three categories:
- Universal / primary prevention, i.e. encouragement of competencies oriented towards democracy and human rights, prevention of individual and group radicalisation
- Secondary prevention / intervention work, i.e. early detection and work with groups at risk
- Tertiary prevention / de-radicalisation, i.e. social and ideological support, support in dissociating from the extremist scene, prevention of further radicalisation, counselling of parents
Here are our member organisations:
API gUG is a non-profit corporation working on a variety of topics in the field of integration. These are, among others, media presentation and embedding of participative integration approaches in the public sphere, continuing education of immigrants and launch and support of flagship projects. Furthermore, in cooperation with the Federal Agency for Civic Education (bpb) and ufuq.de, API has offered certified training courses for radicalisation prevention in schools and youth welfare services for many years.
Aktion Courage e.V. is a non-profit association launching and supporting projects against group-based hate. Aktion Courage was founded in 1992 by citizens’ initiatives, human rights groups, associations and individuals from all social and political camps in response to the violent racism that erupted in Mölln, Solingen, Hoyerswerda and Rostock. Presently Aktion Courage focuses on the project Schule ohne Rassismus – Schule mit Courage (School Without Racism – School With Courage), which undertakes CVE with children and teens against radicalisation and any ideologies of inequality, including among others Islamism, antisemitism, Islamophobia and homophobia.
Aktion Gemeinwesen und Beratung e.V. (AGB) is responsible for the pilot project Clearingverfahren und Case Management – Prävention von gewaltbereitem Neosalafismus und Rechtsextremismus (Clearing Method and Case Management – Prevention of Violent Neo-Salafism and Right-Wing Extremism) and an acknowledged and well-established youth services in Düsseldorf. AGB has many years of profound prior experience in the field of prevention of radicalisation. The above-mentioned pilot project is presently carried out at six schools in Germany. The project tests whether a highly-structured method is successful in discontinuing radicalisation processes. Based on the assumptions of radicalisation prevention, the clearing method is mainly to provide an array of methods and pedagogic measures to help detect radicalisation processes at an early stage and discontinue them. In this context, connecting all relevant actors from the social sphere and the school is just as important as monitoring and well-structured case management. The project is financed by the Federal Agency for Civic Education (bpb) and is aimed at the implementation of the clearing method as well as at raising teachers’ awareness and instructing them in the fields of neo-Salafism and right-wing extremism.
Akzeptanz, Vertrauen, Perspektive e.V. (AVP) is a recognized independent child and youth services provider located in Düsseldorf, Duisburg and Berlin. Since 2002, the association’s various projects have promoted the education, training and integration of teenagers with or without a migrant background. The prevention project streetwork@online was developed in fall 2017. The wide range of offers and mainly internet-based measures of streetwork@online are aimed at countering religiously motivated radicalisation of teens and young adults. The organisation fosters dialogue with Berlin teens and young adults aged 16 to 27 in order to enhance their skills of self-reflection and to support them in developing their own identity.
The Arbeitsgemeinschaft Kinder- und Jugendschutz Hamburg e.V. (ajs) is a recognized independent child and youth services provider in Hamburg. For many years now, the counselling centre has provided support and information for children, teens and parents as well as counselling, ongoing education and professional seminars for educational staff. Its work is oriented towards strengthening resource-based pedagogical child and youth protection. With its project called Jugendphase und Salafismus (Adolescence and Salafism) ajs is a member of BAG RelEx. This project is aimed at raising the awareness of educational staff who work with children and youth, as well as youth social workers, of the subject of adolescence and Salafism and to provide further training in this respect. This is to be achieved by the organisation of working groups in the social sphere, through ongoing training and professional seminars for educational staff and the preparation of informational material. It is a major concern of ajs to draw attention to the special situations, problems and challenges that young people face in adolescence and during growing up and to promote their protection, encouragement and participation. Child and youth services are motivated to check and modify their structures, offerings and attitudes in favour of long-term prevention of religiously motivated radicalisation.
basis & woge e.V is an acknowledged and well-established youth welfare organisation in Hamburg. Its profile shows a wide range of offerings in public and inpatient youth services, in assistance in the social sphere, in educational and integration work with refugees as well as anti-discrimination work. As the organisation responsible for the project SelbstSicherSein – Wer bin ich und wie will ich sein? (BeSelfConfident – Who Am I and How Do I Want to Be?), basis & woge offers workshops, counselling and group work on prevention of religiously motivated radicalisation of children and teenagers in the Mümmelmannsberg community. The target groups are multipliers, children from eight years onwards, teenagers, parents and other contact persons. The programme accompanies children and teenagers as they grow up into young adults and helps them develop strong personalities. The introduction of different perspectives is to show them the wide range of paths through life and to encourage them to self-confidently choose one of their own. basis & woge supports them in critically dealing with discourses of inequality and provides space for reflection on the experience of discrimination. A holistic view of the world of children and teenagers is a matter of course in this context. Constructive exchange with parents, teachers and other contact persons is part of the organisation’s work.
Cultures Interactive e.V is an international expert organisation on youth cultures in the prevention of right-wing extremism, religious fundamentalism and other forms of group-related hatred. The civil society approach to youth culture developed by Cultures Interactive combines political education aimed at the everyday lives of the target groups with youth cultures and narrative group work. The basic principles are as follows: do-it-yourself work in youth cultures, solidarity work, narrating and reliving, reflection and change of perspective. Structures for human-rights oriented youth culture are established throughout Germany, such as project days for schools and youth centres, as well as intensive trainings, ongoing training for specialists and counselling. In addition, action plans and educational materials are made available. The team comprises of specialists in youth cultures, political education, social work, mediation/supervision, cultural studies and socio-therapeutic group work. Cultures Interactive is convinced that best practices in CVE and support for teenagers wanting to distance themselves from extremism are similar for all forms of so-called extremism. In the fields of right-wing extremism and religious extremism, gender is of particular importance. This concept was implemented e.g. in the WomEx (Inter)national exchange of expert views on preventive youth work/youth welfare work, e.g. with the EU/RAN and OSCE, is another focus of Cultures Interactive.
The Demokratiezentrum Baden-Württemberg (Democracy Center Baden-Württemberg) is a support network that works nationwide on extremism prevention and human rights education. Through the program PREvent!on, comprehensive offerings, structures, and strategies for the prevention of radicalisation tendencies in teenagers are developed, and civil society actors are given skills and recommendations. With a network of municipal contacts and specially qualified speakers, PREvent!on develops prevention strategies alongside local civil society and government actors, most of whom are Islamic. This takes place against the background of supporting the long-term establishment of effective prevention structures and measures in each district. Through this work, the concept is furthered that successful CVE against religiously motivated radicalisation is characterized by a long-term perspective and a local focus, and it can only truly succeed if municipal and above all Islamic actors work together to implement a strategy.
The Verein für Demokratie und Vielfalt in Schule und beruflicher Bildung (DEVI) supports schools and professional education establishments e.g. with the project Berliner (Berufs)Schulen für weltanschauliche und religiöse Vielfalt (Berlin (Vocational) Schools for Ideological and Religious Diversity) in their commitment against right-wing extremism, group-based hate, discrimination and religiously motivated extremism. The association’s guidelines are, among others, the promotion of democracy as a way of life, society and government. For more than ten years now, DEVI has supported and counselled Berlin secondary schools in their commitment in the above-mentioned fields, and the association has also been active in Hamburg since 2015. DEVI offers training courses for teachers in vocational education, development of auditing methods for schools’ progress, and support for students who are active in student council or engaged in initiatives like Schule ohne Rassismus – Schule mit Courage (School Without Racism – School With Courage). In addition, seminars and class days are held with students, and support material and argumentation aids are developed which are of use also on a national level and for secondary schools.
Gesicht Zeigen! encourages people to take a stand against racism, antisemitism, xenophobia and right-wing violence. The association gets involved in the current political debate and adopts a clear public position. The goal of Gesicht Zeigen! is to raise awareness of all types of discrimination and to strengthen civil society commitment. To achieve this goal, Gesicht Zeigen! develops projects and actions which help overcome prejudices and encourage interaction and togetherness. The association launches public campaigns at cinemas, on TV or via public advertisements which campaign for moral courage and are supported by a large number of celebrities. The association shares information about current events on Facebook on a daily basis. Furthermore, Gesicht Zeigen! undertakes practical work: the association designs and implements projects for migrant communities such as the innovative exhibition 7xjung – Dein Trainingsplatz für Zusammenhalt und Respekt (Your Training Ground for Solidarity and Respect) or the Germany-wide school project “Störungsmelder on tour” (Trouble Detector on Tour). The pilot project Die Freiheit die ich meine (The Freedom I Have in Mind) develops strategies with girls and young women from Berlin-Mitte helping them to actively stand up for democracy and human rights.
HennaMond e.V. promotes the self-determination of girls, boys, women and men with a migrant background in Germany who are threatened by family violence, oppression, forced marriage and “honour killing”. The association counsels any persons concerned about the above-mentioned topics and, depending on the individual case, ensures that the persons concerned are placed in protective establishments and private accommodation in Germany as well as abroad. If persons are abducted and taken abroad, the association tries to bring them back to Germany. Counselling takes place both in the counselling centre and, depending on the situation, on site, e.g. in schools, youth centres, institutions and agencies or in families themselves. Counselling teenagers and their parents is an important part of attaining the association’s goals. Furthermore, long-established standards and values in society are to be questioned and changed, if necessary. Thus the association’s work also has a preventive effect. The association offers ongoing training, talks and lectures in addition to counselling. HennaMond e.V. has been active since 2006 and operates mainly through donations. In addition, the city of Cologne finances two members of the staff of HennaMond. The project CHAMPS is intended to promote a democratic society without the use of violence.
IFAK e.V. – Verein für Multikulturelle Kinder- und Jugendhilfe (Association for multicultural child and youth welfare – migrant work) has 40 years of experience in professional intercultural work in a wide range of fields in youth welfare well as in work with migrants and refugees. The persons working with IFAK are grouped in multicultural teams; two thirds of them have a migrant background themselves and speak a total of more than 20 languages.
Day-care centres, youth centres, open all-day schools, family centres and integration agencies belong to the association, as well as training facilities and senior citizens’ offices. Furthermore, participants provide counselling and support in educational issues and are active in outreach and support for refugees. The association caters to the needs of persons of all generations and from a wide variety of cultures and religions. In the field of prevention of religiously motivated radicalisation, IFAK uses three different approaches: counselling network Grenzgänger (Border Crossers), Wegweiser Bochum (Signpost Bochum) and the project #selam – gemeinsam stark im Pott (#selam — strong together in North Rhine-Westphalia).
Jugendbildungs- und Sozialwerk Goethe e.V. (JubiGo) was founded in 2012. The association pursues exclusively and directly charitable as well as non-profit welfare projects. It focuses on educational work in the form of projects, seminars and conferences as well as study tours and practice-oriented offerings in different fields. These fields include social issues, democracy, education, culture, integration and international exchange. One of the projects of JubiGo is 180 Grad Wende (180-Degree Turn).
KIgA e.V. develops innovative concepts for pedagogical handling of antisemitism in migrant communities. Both model and practical pedagogical approaches and materials for political education are also being developed on topics such as anti-Muslim racism and extremism. For work at schools, but also in youth leisure facilities and at other sites of political education, the staff at KIgA train young people who implement the approach of peer-to-peer learning and share their own experiences and history in the workshops. In addition to workshops for students, KIgA also offers ongoing education on the Middle East conflict and other subjects for multipliers as well as the new development and refinement of pedagogical material.
LeO e. V. has many years (since 2013) of recognised expertise in counselling, accompanying and empowering children, teens and families. In this context, the organisation offers a wide range of services in the field of child and youth welfare work. These include but are not limited to social group work, intensive individual mentoring, help stabilising family situations, support and guidance, refugee support and help for young adults including subsequent assistance. Emergency overnight accommodation for homeless teenagers is another of the organisation’s offerings. Additional activities of the association include social work in city districts with special requirements and challenges. The organisation’s work is focused particularly on families with a migrant background, and the organisation has well-established access to such families. The Wegweiser – gegen gewaltbereiten Salafismus (Signpost – against violent Salafism) project is just one example of the large number of projects implemented by LeO e.V.
Mosaik Deutschland e.V. is headquartered in Heidelberg and is active nationwide in the field of migration-conscious political education. One of its projects, Quwwa – Radikalisierungsprävention (Quwwa – Radicalisation Prevention), takes place in schools. Offerings include continuing education for teachers, as well as workshops for students or public lecture series. In addition, the project runs a hotline where people can ask questions related to radicalisation.
Multikulturelles Forum e.V. (MkF) is a migrant organisation which has more than 30 years of experience in the field of promoting cooperation and togetherness in society as a whole and in intercultural relations. The overall aim of the MkF’s work is to integrate socially disadvantaged persons with and without a migrant background into society and to enable them to participate in social life.
MkF has its headquarters in Lünen-Mitte and subsidiaries in Lünen-Süd, Bergkamen, Hamm, Düsseldorf and Dortmund. Thematically, its work is structured around five pillars: work/education, social affairs, counselling, cultural work and ongoing training. Within these core areas, MkF not only implements measures for job integration and orientation, but is moreover committed to anti-discrimination work, operates refugee counselling centres and offers intensive language training to migrants as well as ongoing training options. These are open to all persons interested, for example in the fields of language, IT, health and culture. In the above-mentioned fields, MkF implements projects funded by the European Union, the state of Germany, the state of North Rhine-Westphalia and the municipalities. The range of services offered by MkF is broad and aimed at comprehensive social impacts and inclusion. At the Dortmund location, MkF is responsible for a Wegweiser-Beratungsstelle (Signpost – Counselling Centre), which works on site on preventing violent Salafism and offers counselling and assistance to at-risk teenagers and young adults.
RAA Berlin organises and supports projects for the promotion of participation in society in different social spheres. The organisation offers counselling, ongoing training and support throughout the process. This is always done with the aim of countering social discrimination, in particular in the field of education. The project Extrem Demokratisch – Muslimische Jugendarbeit stärken (Extremely Democratic – Advancing Muslim Youth Work) supports multipliers among Muslim teenagers in their work and in their commitment to society by means of ongoing training, qualifications and accompanying coaching. Furthermore, the project offers options for exchange and cooperation with other youth organisations. The project creates a space where young multipliers from Muslim youth work can both deal with the subject of religiously motivated extremism and work out their own responses to it. The point is to reflect on one’s own perceptions and methods, supported and accompanied by professionals, thus developing positive approaches of dealing with religiously motivated extremism.
The Rat muslimischer Studierender & Akademiker e.V. (RAMSA) brings together university students and academics at 35 locations all over Germany. RAMSA connects networks, multipliers, students, working professionals and graduates in local universities with a view to qualifying and empowering them in their commitment in our society. The project Zukunft bilden (Shaping the Future) is aimed at strengthening the commitment of Muslim students against hate, discrimination, racism and isolation tendencies. Through this project RAMSA contributes to the field of prevention of religiously motivated extremism. The goal is to develop progressive perspectives in political and social discourse and to positively influence society.
The project Wegweiser Oberhausen and Mühlheim an der Ruhr, sponsored by the Ruhrwerkstatt Kultur-Arbeit im Revier e.V., is a prevention programme against violent Salafism. It aims to hinder possible radicalisation processes in their early stages in teens and young adults. An essential element of the progamme is providing concrete counselling on site. Discussions with people on site creates the opportunity to reach at-risk individuals early. In addition to advising and accompanying affected young people, Wegweiser integrates the social environment into its work.
The Stuttgarter Jugendhaus (Stuttgart Youth House) promotes the emancipation of young people. This means that young people become aware of their relationship to and actively participate in society. The counselling and information programme INSIDE OUT develops and tests concepts for preventing religiously motivated radicalisation. The goal of this prevention work is to support teens and young adults in finding their place in society through experiential education. Art and theatre education, the search for a personal vision, and intercultural simulation games support personal development and promote democratic attitudes and values. In the field of early-stage prevention, INSIDE OUT emphasizes the development of personal resources and skills in children prior to adolescence through innovative school programs in elementary schools and during the first two grades of secondary education. Ongoing training sessions and lectures are available for youth education specialists, as well as a hotline for counselling in cases of suspected radicalisation
The Türkische Gemeinde in Deutschland e.V (TGD, Turkish Community in Germany) represents the interests of migrants and advocates for their participation in society. Within a period of five years (2015 – 2019), the Präventionsnetzwerk gegen religiös begründeten Extremismus (network for prevention against religiously motivated extremism) is to build a Germany-wide network against religiously motivated extremism among Muslims and social polarisation. The goal is to empower Islamic umbrella organisations as leading CVE, thereby countering radicalisation and hate with decisive perspectives and target group-oriented counselling services. The network members plan their own projects which are tailored specifically to teenagers and multipliers. In the first project phase, concepts specific to the organisations were developed. The network’s commitment is based on the consideration of the multitude of community structures and reality for Muslims living in Germany. Close cooperation with the established organisers of CVE is intended. Furthermore, the online councelling project Emel iniciated by the TGD.
Die Türkische Gemeinde in Schleswig-Holstein e.V (Turkish Community in Schleswig-Holstein) is a volunteer-led non-profit organisation operating throughout the state of Schleswig-Holstein. The TGD promotes the interests of individuals with migrant backgrounds and promotes the integration, social participation, and training of these individuals. The organization is a participant in diverse labor and social projects. The project PROvention, a prevention and counseling center working against religious motivated extremism, has been active since 2015. Along with counseling, the team offers conferences, trainings and workshops on the topics of Islam, Islamophobia and Islamism/Salafism. The project is strengthened through further specialized projects: Kick-Off (Prevention and Deradicalisation in Prison Sentences and Probationary Work), Fachstelle Liberi (children from Salafist-influenced families) and the online counseling Sabil for those looking to exit extremism (in cooperation with the TGD). Additionally, TGS-H is involved in the Exit-Europe program, which builds Europe-wide structures for prevention and counseling work to combat religious motivated extremism.
ufuq.de is a recognised independent youth welfare organisation working in the field of political education and prevention regarding the topics of radicalisation, Islamophobia and Islamism. ufuq is active at the intersection of pedagogical practice, research and politics, developing approaches for the pedagogical handling of societal diversity in the migrant community. One major focus is the development of skills in handling matters of religion, identity and allegiance as well as the prevention of religiously motivated extremism. With its counselling and ongoing education, ufuq addresses multipliers in schools, youth work and local administration. Furthermore, the association develops teaching materials, teacher support resources and online and offline educational work. One of the projects with a focus on online work is bildmachen.
VAJA e.V. has become one of the largest organisations for outreach work / youth work in Bremen since its founding in 1992. Generally, the term outreach youth work (aufsuchende Jugendarbeit) describes a type of work forming the interface between youth work and youth social work. Because of its accessibility, outreach youth work is particularly useful in areas where young people are not reachable (or do not want to be reached) through conventional social work offerings and have chosen instead to spend their free time at informal public meeting places. are of particular importance in outreach youth work. Examples of projects organised by VAJA are kitab and JAMIL.
Vereinigung Pestalozzi supports children, teenagers and families in Hamburg in developing their own strengths and perspectives. The work focuses on persons seeking help and their personal history, their skills and abilities and their needs. Furthermore, the association supports families, children and teenagers in need. It also helps persons in psychologically stressful situations to find their way back into society, family and professional life. The counselling centre Legato addresses systemic counselling of persons intending to leave an extremist group, among other things. Vereinigung Pestalozzi is non-denominational and free of ideological convictions. The team comprises professionals from different cultures and professional backgrounds. All share the conviction that mutual respect and tolerance are the basis of their work.
Violence Prevention Network (VPN) is an association of specialists who are experienced in the prevention of extremism and de-radicalisation of violent extremist offenders. Since 2001, the team at Violence Prevention Network has been working in the field of serious violent crimes committed by ideologically motivated teenagers. Thanks to its work with right-wing extremist teenagers and teenagers at risk of Islamist tendencies, the Violence Prevention Network gained many years of expertise in working with ideologically motivated offenders throughout Germany. The method of Verantwortungspädagogik® (responsibility pedagogy) developed by Violence Prevention Network provides a humiliation-free approach to persons having joined anti-democratic structures, thus enabling them to find their way back into democratic society.
Wegweiser Düsseldorf e.V is a non-profit association where Muslims and non-Muslims share responsibilities. The association wants to help teenagers who came into contact with neo-Salafist tendencies advocating the use of violence. It offers qualified assistance in prevention aimed at these teenagers, their relatives, and their teachers. The goals of the association are providing comprehensive information on neo-Salafism advocating violence (content, structure and recruiting strategies), strengthening resilience (immunisation against contacts from a neo-Salafist context) and empowerment. In addition, the provision and implementation of qualified assistance is meant to prevent and interrupt radicalisation processes.
Yallah! – Fach- und Vernetzungsstelle Salafismus im Saarland is a project promoted by the Domestic Democracy Centre in Saarland through the federal program “Demokratie leben!” (Live Democracy!) and the Saarland Ministry for Social Affairs, Health, Women, and Family. It was established in 2016 by the Research and Transfer Office for Social Integration and Migration (GIM). Yallah!’s directive is the transfer of scientific knowledge about the phenomenon of religiously-motivated radicalisation to hands-on prevention efforts. For this purpose, the project was designed in an interdisciplinary manner, combining expertise in Islamic studies, human rights education and social justice pedagogy with specialized knowledge in Muslim ways of life, Islamophobia and the phenomenon of Salafism. Thus, the project considers the holistic societal context of radicalization processes. Yallah! implements its own measures, trains multipliers and networks with relevant actors in Saarland in order to support them professionally in the conception and implementation of their own prevention measures. The Research and Transfer Office for Social Integration and Migration (GIM) is financed exclusively through project funds provided by the Faculty of Social Sciences at the Saarland University of Applied Sciences. It was founded in 2005 and has since carried out a variety of projects supported by federal and local programs and the European Social Fund. Its mission is the research and design of transitions in the course of life, particularly with respect to migration. Thematic priorities are economic migration, municipal integration policy, social and urban development planning, early childhood education, cross-cultural relations and anti-discrimination.
GIM projects are supported by FITT GmbH, the Institute for Science and Technology Transfer at the Saarland University of Applied Sciences.
The Zentralrat der Muslime in Deutschland e.V. (ZMD) (The Central Council of Muslims in Germany) is a multi-ethnic religious community presently comprising 35 Muslim umbrella organisations and institutions. The project Safer Spaces is active in the prevention of religiously motivated extremism, actively including teenagers and parents in its work. The programme intends to help teenagers develop more self-confidence by means of participation and the ethics of religion, teaching them that they neither need to negate their religion nor to see their actions as opposing our free and democratic society. In this context, correctly interpreted Islam is considered to be an element of immunisation against extremist tendencies and violence. New prospects are opened up to the teenagers, and practical aspects like education, work and self-actualisation in society make them understand that they are important to our country and can actively contribute to the common welfare. The most important goals for ZMD are as follows: (1) Teenagers discuss and settle their questions and issues in mosques rather than in the streets. This is achieved by youth-oriented talks on Islam and lectures by well-known speakers. Another goal is that (2) teenagers are shown the practical appeal of a democratic society. Life in a democracy has many advantages of which many teenagers with an international background are not fully aware.
Members of BAG RelEx can be recognized by this stamp
In addition to networking with the German actors in preventing violent extremism, BAG RelEx strives for international exchange and networking. In this context BAG RelEx cooperates with international partners.
The Wegweiser Ostbelgien (Signpost East Belgium) is a program for the prevention of violent radicalism. It is intended to prevent young people from joining radical groups and to take care of those who have already come into contact with problematic milieus. By sensitizing first-line actors, radicalisation processes should be made more visible overall and the response to them optimised as far as possible.
The establishment of a signpost contact point in East Belgium is part of the strategy to prevent violent radicalism in the German-speaking community. It is based on a cooperation agreement between the German-speaking Community of Belgium, the State of North Rhine-Westphalia and the City of Aachen.
The government of the German-speaking Community is responsible for the contact point, which is based on the North Rhine-Westphalian Wegweiser Programme in terms of content and yet operates autonomously. The contact point was located at the Kaleido Ostbelgien service and opened in April 2017.