The results of the survey conducted by the OECD Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) show that the educational performance of children is highly dependent from the social background and the income of their parents. Therefore, children with parents living on “Hartz IV” welfare are particularly deprived. The initiative “filled schoolbags for all children” aims at children in need. Teaching aids are a prerequisite for participation in the educational system. Not only will children with poor schooling be disadvantaged compared to their peers – as a consequence their job opportunities will also be limited in the future.
The initiative was launched by the Deutsches Kinderhilfwerk in 2005. Since then we provide first graders in need with free schoolbags. In doing so, we cooperate closely with social counselling facilities offered by institutions like Caritas, pro Familia, Diakonie and with other organisations offering debt counselling.
In 2006 we were able to distribute schoolbags to every child in need in the city of Bremen. In Berlin we provided 500 children with schoolbags. Demand is constantly rising. If you consider the amount that every “Hartz IV” child has at his or her disposal (in total only 208 Euros per month), it is obvious that this is not sufficient to provide the basic equipment. On our website you can find a list that shows all the costs connected to school enrolment. According to this list, an amount of 327 Euros is needed for enrolment – without the costs for school books.
It is possible for low-income families to buy second hand books, some teaching aids, however, have to be provided by themselves.
Donations to this project are welcome all year long. The demand from disadvantaged families is especially high, of course, shortly before school enrolment period.