WHO WE ARE & WHAT WE DO
When the association INWOLE was founded in the early 2000s, no one involved at that time could have imagined how this project would develop one day. Our primary goal was to create a common place where we could combine the areas of living, working, education, culture, social and political activity.
In 2005 we came a big step closer to our goal when we were able to buy the vacant villa with a large piece of land in Potsdam-Babelsberg.
A lot has happened in the following years. Together we have laughed, sweat and tears have flowed, we have been euphoric, we have experienced setbacks, started new ways and achieved success.
Today, we and our environment include 3 residential houses with about 40 residents (as well as 4 cats and 1 dog), a workshop house with 6 workshop departments, a seminar- and guest house with accommodations and seminar rooms, a project and consulting office as well as a large network of numerous associations, initiatives and individuals.
As an association we are a provider for various projects of educational work, intercultural meetings, ecological mobility and sustainability. We offer committed people rooms, concepts and a legal - organizational framework to implement their ideas and conceptions.
With our concepts and projects we want to support an eco-social change in society. Together we try out models to work and produce with our own hands again, to live communally and in solidarity, to actively co-design cities for all people, to find ecological forms of mobility as well as to integrate people from other cultures.
Since 2012 and 2019, respectively, we are a recognized youth education center and further education institution of the state of Brandenburg.
Are you curious? Then feel free to drop by or write an email to: info [at] foerderverein-inwole.de!
WERKHAUS (WORKSHOP HOUSE)
The Werkhaus is the only large "house of self-work" in the region with a focus on traditional crafts and support for Do-It-Yourself ideas and upcycling. The basic idea of the Werkhaus is to motivate people to become active again with their own hands - collaboratively and in a resource-saving way.
Our workshops are open, which means that you can realize your own ideas and projects here.
We also offer various courses and workshops and can organize practical days as well as extracurricular educational projects.
Our workshop departments are wood workshop, pottery, smithery, textile workshop, bicycle workshop and wild plants.
An oven house with a kitchen and a large pizza or bread oven is also part of our area.
If you want to know more about our workhouse, please contact us:
Email: info [at] werkhaus-potsdam.de
SEMINAR AND GUEST HOUSE
Our self-organized seminar and guest house is actually a floor in our historical manufacturer’s villa.
The premises are open for initiatives and groups doing emancipatory project work. We offer a variety of possibilities for use: seminar day, (youth) meeting, team meeting or workshop week.
The facility consists of 2 seminar rooms and a covered outdoor area, 4 rooms for overnight stays with a capacitiy of 23 beds, self-catering kitchen, outdoor area, workshops and social program on request.
You want to know more? Reach out!
Email: vermietung [at] foerderverein-inwole.de
OUR PROJECTS - OUR TOPICS
Education for Sustainable Development (BNE)
The basis of our commitment is the understanding that there is an urgent need for social change in order to be able to solve the major global problems. For this, it will be necessary to try out new ideas of sustainability, solidarity economy, social participation and solidarity and to make them public.
For this purpose, we continuously organize projects, from thematic evenings and expert forums, to workshops, seminar and thematic weeks, to the creation of various educational materials (flyers, brochures, curricula).
We cooperate with other initiatives and associations in this thematic field and are member of various working groups and networks. Since 2016 we are co-organizer* of the Wandelwoche (transition week) in Berlin-Brandenburg.
In cooperation with "ImWandel e.V." we have established an interactive online platform about sustainable development for Brandenburg.
All historical projects of the Inwole e.V. from Potsdam-Babelsberg are gathered under the umbrella term "Gedenkerfahrungen" (commemorative experiences). For many years now, political and historical education has been one of the main focuses of our association's work.
Thematically we are flexible and open. However, historical topics that are still relevant today are especially important to us. Be it because certain topics still pose a threat to a free and solidary society or because lessons for the future can be learned from dealing with these topics.
In the same way, we are interested in historical topics that do not get the attention in current historiography that we think they deserve. We are also thinking of progressive, historical movements that are only marginally covered in "mainstream history." Faced with the challenges of the future, a look at history can both admonish and inspire.
In our projects, encounters that enable exchanges across national borders or age groups are a major focus. Together, this has made it possible to discuss many questions, look at different perspectives and create interesting materials.
Today, our project website brings together all of our history projects. Originally, the site was launched for the international project on World War I in 2018. At that time, a website was created where mainly young people could present their experiences, their perspectives and their form of "commemoration". In 2019, a project on the topic of revolutions followed, and in 2020, the focus was on the so-called "baseball bat years", dealing with the right-wing violence in the 1990ies in East Germany.
In 2021, we had an international project with partners from Novi Sad (Serbia) on the Yugoslavian cemetery of the former prisoner of war camp Stalag III A near Luckenwalde. This resulted in a documentary film that helped to find relatives in the countries of the former Yugoslavia.
In 2022, we dealt with various topics of international or local relevance at the Remembrance Policy Theme Days.
From previous years, we have now integrated the content from two projects on the role of the media in the Yugoslav wars of the 1990s and on the role of Yugoslav women in the fight against fascism and Nazism. The brochures produced as part of these projects are also available for download as PDFs.
Email: geschichtsprojekte [at] foerderverein-inwole.de
We support people and self-organized initiatives, which are engaged in current political topics.
The basis for this are emancipatory, democratic and solidary concepts and positions. This includes networks for an alternative and critical urban development, groups working for climate justice and anti-racist initiatives.
We ourselves are responsible for concrete projects, but we also support other groups with our infrastructure.
The "fLotte Potsdam" is a free cargo bike project. The origin of the commitment to cargo bikes is the project "Mediatrike".
Many years ago, cargo bike fans, media educators and activists from Werkhaus Potsdam started a project that combined the construction of cargo bikes with creative and cool media uses. As a result, cargo bikes were built in schools, homes for refugees, and cultural and youth centers for use as student radios, farm mobiles, and play bikes. Eventually a large festival with and for cargo bikes took place for the first time in 2017 on Bassinplatz in Potsdam - the Mediatrike Festival.
Support Work For And With Migrants
The support of refugees and migrant self-organizations has a long tradition with us. The Inwole association has therefore seen itself for years as an open and protected place for all migrants, regardless of their origin, perspective on staying or sexual orientation.
We want to practice solidarity, recognize the diversity of people, position ourselves against discrimination and reflect on our role in this. We organize intercultural theme and film evenings, work together with the new media, conduct emancipatory training seminars for women and girls, and plan excursions in Potsdam and Brandenburg.
In 2022 we started an Ukraine project in order to support refugees from Ukraine.
International Meeting And Education
International projects i.e. our cooperation with partner groups from other countries has long been an important focus of our work. Our goal is to network and develop lasting partnerships with various actors in the fields of youth, adult and political education, as well as sustainable development.
This way, our work and competencies are constantly improved, and issues relevant to us (sustainable development, social transformation, urban development, social justice and human rights) are addressed on a broader level. This is because all challenges in these thematic areas cannot be successfully addressed on a limited (local and national) level, because their causes and effects only partly have local and/or national origins. That is why a global perspective and international cooperation are a matter of course for us: We want to link our projects in a holistic approach and establish connections to other social projects and thus influence the social climate locally, regionally and globally.
Currently we cooperate with different associations, networks, federations and initiatives from France, former Yugoslavia, Greece, Italy, Spain, Denmark, Czech Republic, Russia, Belarus and Ukraine. These cooperations take place in different frameworks, as bilateral and multilateral thematically specific projects, study visits and seminars for professionals, youth meetings, summer camps and bicycle tours, both abroad and in Potsdam and the state of Brandenburg.
Our international projects are funded by various state, federal and European programs, such as KJP of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports of the State of Brandenburg (MBJS), German-French Youth Workshop (DFJW), German-Greek Youth Workshop (DGJW) and Erasmus+ programs of the EU. In addition, our projects have been supported by various foundations, such as the Foundation Remembrance-Responsibility-Future (EVZ) and others.