The Social Welfare Organization of the Protestant Church in Germany
Diaconia stands for the social work of the churches other than the Roman Catholic Church. Diakonisches Werk der Evangelischen Kirche in Deutschland (EKD) is the social welfare organization of the Protestant Church in Germany (EKD). It includes the regional social welfare services of the 20 EKD member churches, diaconal associations of other Protestant denominations and approximately 80 specialist organizations working in different fields of social care, health care and education.
Activities in Germany include:
- Elder care
- Support for the unemployed
- Youth welfare
- Support of people with disabilities
- Family welfare
- Health care
- Migration issues
The membership of Diakonisches Werk der EKD includes over 28,000 independent institutions in Germany, of varying sizes and legal structures, employing approximately 444,000 full-time and part-time employees and providing over one million care placements. In addition, approximately 3,500 self-help groups, 18,000 member church parishes and 400,000 volunteers support German diaconal work.
Financing of diaconal activities depends on the task. Services are financed by user fees, government funds, church resources and / or donations. Fees for medical care are often paid by German social security. Other social services are mainly financed by tax-supported government funds.
History - The origins of diaconia in Germany
Organised diaconia in Germany began in 1848 in Hamburg when theologian Johann Hinrich Wichern, responding to spiritual and material poverty and social need, drafted the programme for Inner Mission (Innere Mission). A central committee was established, and Inner Mission associations created throughout Germany to run institutions, schools and social care and welfare organisations.
After the end of World War II, the relief organisation “Hilfswerk der EKD” was founded to attract foreign aid and promote ecumenical contacts to fight famine, support exiles and refugees and overcome unemployment. In 1975, Innere Mission and Hilfswerk united to become Diakonisches Werk der EKD.
In 1959, the German Protestant Churches started the Brot für die Welt project to support people in need in developing countries. Later, this project became a permanent institution and was integrated into Diakonisches Werk der EKD. Since 1959, there are special Christmastime collections for the work of Brot für die Welt in EKD and other member church parishes. Along with Diaconia in Germany, Diakonie Katastrophenhilfe and Brot für die Welt combine emergency aid with activities to fight poverty and exclusion both, within and outside of Germany and Europe.
Diakonisches Werk der EKD has been headquartered in Stuttgart, but is now transferred to Berlin. In 1992, the Brussels Office was established to represent the organisation to the European Union institutions. It is located inside the EKD building facing the Berlaymont headquarters of the European Commission.
Diakonisches Werk der Ev.-luth. Landeskirche Hannovers e.V.
Diakonisches Werk der Ev.-luth. Landeskirche Hannovers e.V. (Diakonie) is an institution oft the Lutheran Church in Germany. Diakonie was founded on the basis, that believing in Jesus Christ and active charity belong together. That is why Diakonie offers and develops all kind of social services, for example
- homes for old people
- homes for handicapped people
- help for lone mothers and drug addicted people
The services are provided in Hanover and other different cities in Lower Saxony.
Diakonisches Werk der Ev.-luth. Landeskirche Hannovers e.V. is the Headquarter of the administration of Diakonie in Lower Saxony.