Our success story
The success of three decades of BGZ can be measured in figures and substantiated by numerous awards. However, in our opinion success also means that our work continues to have an effect. We care about the sustainable changes that our projects set in motion. It is the long-term effect that is crucial – enduring success.Chronicle
Our success in figures
Since the BGZ’s founding, more than 90 projects have been successfully completed, with a financial volume of more than 58 million euros altogether. In Berlin/Brandenburg alone more than 25,000 people have benefited, including about 15,000 young people, 1,500 skilled workers in SMEs and 6,000 Berlin residents with immigrant backgrounds.
Our prizes and awards
Awareness for Fairness
- December 2010: Prize winner “World Aware Education Awards 2010”, awarded by the North-South Centre of the Council of Europe
- November 2011: Model project at the training/education market of the congress “WeltWeitWissen 2011 – Grenzen überschreiten” in Saarbrücken
- November 2011: Official project of the UN Decade “Education for sustainable development” (award granted by the German UNESCO commission)
- January 2012: Werkstatt N project, a prize awarded by the Rat für nachhaltige Entwicklung (The German Council for Sustainable Development)
- commended as a model project in the Global Compact Cities Programme of the United Nations (2008): “Global Compact Announcement”
Umbau & Ko
- Leonardo Prize 2009 in the category “Innovation in practice“
It was not only the clear and precise material on the extremely relevant topic of energy efficiency that impressed the jury, but also the certification strategy model which serves to assist the countries on their way to mutual recognition and accrediting of acquired technical skills. The system is intended to create transparency for companies and construction teams. The project had a great impact due to the excellent collaboration with Germany, Denmark, Poland and Belgium, and through the integration of chambers and trade associations.Prof. Dr. Weiß, member of the jury, in his laudation
It is our aim to trigger changes through projects. We consider it essential to further the sustainable utilisation of the results. This has been especially successful in some particular projects:
Projects for the promotion of vocational training in Turkey
The BGZ has been actively involved in Turkey since 1983. In collaboration with the MEKSA, the Foundation for the Promotion of Vocational Training and Small Industry, we have implemented projects for the qualification of skilled workers and managers, for start-up consultancy and to further self-regulatory bodies in industry. The training centres which have been established across the country are the result of a former Public-Private Partnership. They were promoted by the German Federal ministries BMZ/GTZ/BMA (Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development/German Society for Technical Cooperation/ Federal Ministry of Labour); and companies such as Bayer AG, Mannesmann AG, Ruhrkohle AG or Thyssen Stahl AG.
Lasting effect: In 18 industry-wide vocational and further training centres in 12 cities in Turkey approximately 10,000 apprentices have been trained in 13 recognized trades in 30 years. In 1986 experience with the model projects led to the amendment of the first Turkish vocational education laws to follow German precedent.Promotion of vocational training in Turkey
ProPolska – “Polish for Business” in vocational commercial training
Berlin is close to the Polish border and more than 100,000 people of Polish origin live in the city. Their language skills can prove to be of great advantage for the economy. It is the aim of the ProPolska project to develop these language skills, most specifically in the language of business and commerce, to certify them and to link them to the needs of the Berlin economy. It introduces trainees with knowledge of Polish to companies who want to take advantage of opportunities on the Polish market and consequently need well-trained staff with special skills.
Lasting effect: Those who successfully complete the ProPolska course and final examination are awarded the Polish Foreign Language Certificate of the Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs of the Länder in the Federal Republic of Germany. The training concept was first developed in Germany in our BGZ project and was incorporated as a standard course in full-time training for office communication by the Oberstufenzentrum für Bürowirtschaft und Verwaltung (Secondary School for Business Administrationin Berlin) in Berlin.ProPolska
Operation Berlin – new ways to a career in the Fire Brigade
The project aims to try out a new approach to Fire Department careers in middle-ranking positions while at the same time considerably increasing the proportion of young people with immigrant backgrounds in the Berlin Fire Department. Previously a successfully completed training in a skilled trade had been a necessary condition, now the project tested training by stages. Tailored to the fire department’s field of work, a basic skilled-craft training was developed in the areas of woodwork, metalwork, electronics, plumbing and auto mechanics, and tried out in three runs.
Lasting effect: The Senate Department for the Interior and Sport changed the training regulations for middle-ranking positions in the Berlin Fire Department. The project is integrated as a regular course as of 2012. Other cities have already made enquiries. We operate in close cooperation with the German Fire Services Association.Operation Berlin
Umbau & Ko – vocational and further training for energy-efficient building
Energy-efficient building is in great demand in Berlin. This has become a large market for SMEs due to the European Energy Saving regulation and it requires suitably qualified staff. In the project “Umbau & Ko” modules for the qualification and certification for all relevant building aspects were developed, then tried and tested in practice and a certification concept was developed.
Lasting effect: In Germany, Poland and Belgium, instructors adopt the learning and teaching material in vocational and further training colleges. In Poland the umbrella organisation of Polish Skilled Crafts also uses the procedure to accredit foreign qualifications in the building trade. The Berlin Chamber of Small Business and Skilled Crafts uses the material in “Leonida” to train disadvantaged young people. In 2009, “Umbau & Ko” was awarded the Leonardo innovation prize.UMBAU & KO
DigiTales – mini films for equal opportunity
DigiTales is a project that offers a large number of people in Europe the opportunity to tell their story in digital form as a “mini film”. Over three days they compile their photos and pictures into a short film of about two minutes. Participants could be Sinti and Roma, children, single mothers or refugees. The BGZ developed the methods in cooperation with their international partners integrated in the Equal development partnership ProIntegration.
Lasting effect: The method is inexpensive and easily reproducible, and has consequently moved rapidly beyond the framework of the project. The service and information platform “Lehrer-Online” (Teachers online) has designed a teaching unit on “DigiTales“, that has been adopted nation-wide. The completed “DigiTales” have been posted on the homepage. In 2006 a festival covering the topic “EQUAL Opportunities for All” showed film contributions on Berlin public transport television and broadcast “Oral stories” on Radio Multikulti.ProIntegration - DigiTales
“The Stranger in the Mirror” - Short film against racism and xenophobia
The short film “The Stranger in the Mirror” was developed within the framework of the EQUAL development partnership ProInteCra and is an educational product against Xenophobia at the workplace. The film addresses young people especially, and is intended to raise their awareness concerning racism, prejudice and clichés. The film relates the humorous and interesting story of two colleagues of different nationalities who had a row because of their personal prejudices.
_Lasting effect: _ There was such great demand for the film that it was allocated to the non-commercial rental department of the Konferenz der Landesfilmdienste (Conference of Regional Film Services). The feedback and evaluation were very positive. The trailer here gives a brief insight. The film can be ordered directly via the director and producer Reinhard Günzler for € 24.90 at:
Accompanying material for use in the classroom can be found here.ProInteCra - The Stranger in the Mirror