Press release (23.01.2023)



Children get involved and have a say: In its first meeting, the newly founded children's council decided which children's aid projects the Schwalbe company would support with a total of 15,000 euros. The eleven children of Schwalbe employees have selected a wide range of projects: winter blankets for Ukrainian children, a bicycle workshop in Burkina Faso or balance bikes for the Janoschs Trauminsel family center in Gummersbach. They all have one thing in common: They enable other children to look to the future with more confidence.

The children's council gives children and young people a voice in the company. The idea for this arose from Schwalbe’s cooperation with the children’s aid organization Children for a better world e.V., which the company has been supporting since January 2022.

Seven motions at first meeting 

At the first meeting in December 2022, seven local and international project applications were submitted, which they evaluated on the basis of five factors: impact, urgency, long-term nature, scope and concept. After the motions were presented, the children engaged in open discussion.

For example, there was a request for warm winter blankets for children in Kharkiv, Ukraine (via Rocking Horse Association): "None of us know what war feels like." But the children quickly agreed that help was urgently needed. Mats said: "The children will then be cozy and warm in the blankets and maybe they won't think about the war for a moment, but about something nice."

Also requested was the purchase of a wheelchair lift for a four-year-old child who has been in a wheelchair since birth and lives with his family on the first floor of an apartment building. The thoughts in the group revolved around many questions: "only" one child was helped (reach factor), but in the long term. The children weighed up the pros and cons, and the role of the parents was also discussed, as they had to carry more and more weight as they got older. "With the elevator, parents don't need all their strength to carry him up, they can use it to play with him even more," Leo said.

Apprenticeships for bicycle workshops in Burkina Faso

The children found the greatest relation to Schwalbe in an application from a bicycle repair shop in Burkina Faso. There, several training positions for two-wheeler mechatronics are to be supported in order to offer young people better future prospects. It was immediately clear to the group that children in Africa are confronted with completely different problems: “We can spread bread in the morning if we are hungry. It's completely different depending on the country there.” The children saw a ray of hope in the training places. Paul: "This can break the vicious circle of not getting out of poverty." Julian also supported the idea: "In this way they can pass on knowledge from person to person."

CEO Frank Bohle: "With the newly founded children's council, we want to involve the children of our employees in important decisions. They are given space to deal with various social problems and to actively find ways of solving them. This encourages them in their own commitment – today and in the future.”

Ultimately, the funding amounts requested exceeded the available budget for the session, so the children decided to fund five projects fully, one partially and one not for the time being.

This is the children's council:

A total of 13 children of employees between the ages of 8 and 18 form the children's council and thus give children and young people a voice in the company (two were absent due to illness). The Advisory Board meets twice a year to discuss the project applications and ultimately to decide on a total funding amount of EUR 20,000.

How the child council works:

1. Organizations submit project applications

2. Children's Advisory Board discusses applications received at meetings

3. Children's Council awards grants

Where did the concept come from?

Schwalbe has been collaborating with the children's aid organization Children for a better World e.V. since January 2022. This organization annually reaches more than 10,000 children and adolescents in Germany through its programs. In line with the motto "With Children. For Children," the organization promotes programs aimed at combating the effects of child poverty in Germany, advocates for the rights of children and adolescents, and supports the involvement of young people.

Further information

Schwalbe UK LTD
Press Office
Hortonwood 30 | Shropshire TF1 7ET Telford 
Phone: +441952602680 |

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