Responsibility and social commitments
In the Deutsche Bahn Foundation gGmbH, DB Group has merged its charitable commitment and DB Museum in order to fulfill its social responsibility more effectively. Deutsche Bahn Foundation seeks to co-create an equitable society, and improve social cohesion. It combines railway history with setting the course for the future. For this reason, it operates the DB Museum, is committed to integrating those on the edges of society, and supports voluntary work. The mission statement “Ensuring a connection. Creating links. Setting the course.” summarizes its task.
Language as the key to education and integration
Deutsche Bahn Foundation, together with the Reading Foundation (Stiftung Lesen), is heavily involved in reading and language support. One expression of this shared commitment is the nationwide reading aloud day. The reading aloud kits with 20 books were presented to more than 1,000 family-supporting institutions in the year under review. Deutsche Bahn Foundation publishes three reading aloud stories for children online every week for free.
Training posts remain unfilled because many high school students are not aware of what jobs are available and which would suit them. Deutsche Bahn Foundation and the Learning through Engagement Foundation (Stiftung Lernen durch Engagement) developed the “Appointed heroes – learning through engagement for career opportunities” (“Berufene Helden – Lernen durch Engagement für Chancen im Beruf”) project to intervene in this area. Teachers assist high school students in planning and implementing a project based on their own social environment that encourages career orientation and/or skills needed for training. The students organize and reflect on their projects, acquiring specific training competences and skills, thereby laying the foundation for their future professional lives.
In addition, since the year under review, we have been implementing various pilot projects, particularly to support children and adolescents from educationally disadvantaged living backgrounds in the area of digital skills in order to contribute to greater educational fairness, and to support single parents and women of migrant backgrounds in their professional integration.
For the fourth time, DB employees who are involved in non-profit organizations in their free time were able to apply to the Deutsche Bahn Foundation in the year under review. The funds are directly channeled into concrete projects and benefit non-profit organizations. As part of the DB Award, the Special Prize for Social Commitment was awarded for the first time by Deutsche Bahn Foundation in the year under review.
To recognize and reward social engagement, Deutsche Bahn Foundation, as one of the three main sponsors of the German Engagement Prize, supported the Top Prize for Civic Engagement in Germany.
Deutsche Bahn Foundation works closely with the railway station missions (Bahnhofsmission) and their supporting institutions, which provide support at over 100 stations in Germany. Under the mission statement “Learning for Life,” Deutsche Bahn Foundation promotes local projects of individual railway station missions nationwide. In the year under review, seven sites implemented low-threshold education opportunities (including media skills mediation and assistance support with authority issues). They enable regular visitors to the railway station missions to acquire everyday skills and to experience self-efficacy in order to develop new life perspectives.
The video interpreting pilot project with the Conference for Church Railway Station Mission facilitates support conversations with non-German-speaking passengers at more than 20 locations.
Deutsche Bahn Foundation also supported a walk-in clinic near the Berlin Central Station, where people without health insurance could receive medical assistance at any time of the year and free of charge. Beyond that, Deutsche Bahn Foundation offered structured discussions to those with mental and psychological issues through “Encouragers at the Station” at the Berlin Central Station and where necessary connected them to the social and psychiatric health system in Berlin.
Promoting mental health
Deutsche Bahn Foundation has been involved since 2014 in working to destigmatize depression as a mental illness in society. Together with the German depression aid foundation (Stiftung Deutsche Depressionshilfe), it supports the German Federation against Depression (Deutsches Bündnis gegen Depression) in over 80 cities and regions. The annual Germany Depression Barometer (Deutschland-Barometer Depression) study from the Foundation of German Depression Aid (Deutsche Stiftung Depressionshilfe) and Deutsche Bahn Foundation in the year under review investigated the key topics of depression and age, which resonated particularly strongly in the media.
Help for homeless children
In the year under review, Deutsche Bahn Foundation presented its touring exhibition “uncoupled” at 12 stations; 20 large-format photographs and texts draw attention to the issue of youth homelessness. Together with the nationwide Off Road Kids Foundation, Deutsche Bahn Foundation helps to prevent runaways and sofa-hoppers from having to live on the streets. Using the online platform Sofahopper.de and the first virtual Streetwork-Station in Germany, young people at risk of homelessness can access qualified contact and advice points all over Germany. Here, young people can discuss problems with street advisors and get help anonymously.
In collaboration with the Development Helps Association (Bündnis Entwicklung Hilft), Deutsche Bahn Foundation supports people in acute humanitarian emergencies. With targeted international aid projects, it contributes to the longer-term improvement of the living situation. The Indian aid project Nai Disha (New Direction) organizes prevention and educational work along the most frequented lines, as well as access to medical diagnosis and treatment for truck drivers. This can be used to reduce the spread of tuberculosis and other infectious diseases. The project partner DAHW German Leprosy and Tuberculosis Aid (DAHW Deutsche Lepra- und Tuberkulosehilfe e. V.) is supported by DB Schenker employees on the ground.
DB Museum - living history
Deutsche Bahn Foundation runs the DB Museum, which features three sites. A permanent exhibition tracking the history of the railway in Germany forms the core of the museum and is on show in the building in Nuremberg. In addition to the railway land KIBALA, there is a further exhibition area for children to participate in, which opened in the year under review. Temporary exhibitions and an extensive event and educational program supplement the offer. With a total of about 2,500 shelving meters of documents, over one million photographs, countless original objects, about 150,000 pieces of media and over 600 vehicles, the DB Museum has the most extensive and oldest collection of railway history in Germany. The Koblenz and Halle sites will be supported by honorary employees in their work as part of a cooperation with the BSW&EWH Foundation Family (Stiftungsfamilie BSW&EWH). In the year under review, the number of visitors increased by 3% to over 225,000 guests. The Nuremberg building, in particular, recorded a significant increase in the number of visitors (+6%).