Despite the existence of child benefit and other forms of financial support, child poverty remains a problem in Germany. In Braunschweig alone, every fifth child is affected by poverty. In addition to poorer educational attainment, these children often suffer on a daily basis with problems such as bad nutrition and a lack of exercise. The "Our Children in Braunschweig" foundation was established by Volkswagen Financial Services AG in 2008 and focuses on providing long-term assistance for socially disadvantaged children and youngsters in the Braunschweig region.
Our four pillars of support
The four cornerstones of the charitable foundation are education, music, activity and nutrition.
It is vital to enhance a child's natural curiosity – especially during the first years of life. Failure to do so will result in educational deficits, gaps in personal growth and maturation that may result in disadvantages in later life. In the field of education, the foundation therefore supports the project "Praxisklasse – Durchstarten ins Berufsleben" ("Practical class – Getting started in working life"). With the help of the methods of drama and theatre pedagogy, pupils learn to start out in their professional careers with self-assurance and confidence.
Music is an important factor in promoting children's development. The foundation supports early musical education in day nurseries through its project "Wir machen Musik!" ("We make music!"). It also funds instrumental lessons as part of all-day school activities and provides the necessary music teachers and musical instruments.
It is important to strengthen children's coordination, motor skills and body awareness as early as possible. The project "Sport in der Kita" ("Sport at the day nursery") aims to show children how fun activity can be. The foundation carries out this project together with the Eintracht Braunschweig Foundation. Courses of swimming lessons are provided for primary schools in socially disadvantaged neighborhoods during the holidays.
People acquire their eating habits during their first ten years of life, an attitude to nutrition that shapes them throughout the rest of their lives. It is therefore all the more important for us to teach young children the basic elements of a healthy diet at an early age. Several projects aim to inform parents and children about the importance of healthy nutrition. In a variety of different ways, the foundation promotes the collective enjoyment of healthy breakfasts and lunches in day nurseries, primary schools and youth centers.