»Kicking off a snowball effect« - Interview with Gisela Keck

You have been founder of Bewegungsstiftung for almost a year now. How did you get to know the foundation?

»The first time I heard about Bewegungsstiftung was in a newspaper article in the 'taz'. My sister, who lives in Berlin, sent me the article. Shortly afterwards I met the  foundation's executive secrety, Jörg Rohwedder. To me it's important what kind of people are behind a project, if I can trust them and establish a good connection to them. The conversation with Jörg Rohwedder was very revealing and convinced me that Bewegungsstiftung is the right thing for me. I was really impressed by the way the FoeBuD e.V., as a funded project, was able to prevent the implementation of surveillance chips in the products of the Metro company. That showed to me that the foundation's funding work can make an important difference.«

What has motivated you to become a founder?

»The social gap in our society becomes bigger and bigger. The state withdraws itself from many areas and aggravates social problems. For example in schools: the governments reduces their spendings but at the same time they complain that more and more young people fall behind and don't find a way out of the precarious milieu. Instead the money is squandered for some objects of prestige. When social movements claim changes, they tackle the root causes of the problem. Bewegungsstiftung funds grassroots groups that want to change something, and I am happy to give away something for that purpose.«

Were you or are you still active in social movements?

»For many years I support Connection e.V. in Offenbach. They help people in war areas to say 'No' to it and to desert - may it be in Turkey, Eritrea, in the Balkans or in Iraq. I don't want to leave the people, who organize that, out in the rain and support them financially, as far as I can. But I was never an activist in social movements myself.«

Bewegungsstiftung wants to give impetus for social movements. Could the foundation also influence you personally?

»It has inspired me to gain new founders. My sister from Berlin is now also a founder. And for the foundation's meeting in Bad Boll in the beginning of December I'm going to bring both of my sisters and my daughter. Bewegungsstiftung will always kick off such snowball effects. Sometimes it takes longer than you wish it would take. But until now, many things have been achieved. What I find exhausting on these meeting is that the structure of the foundation is presented in detail again and again. But that's important to inform new members and founders.«

Some founders consider it also a burden to be wealthy. Others see more the chances that go along with it. What about you?

»To be relatively wealthy is for me first of all a chance and a duty to help where it is necessary - sometimes in Bewegungsstiftung, sometimes at other places.  When people of the foundation come to talk about how to deal with their assets, I find that very good. Among your friends it often not possible to adress this issue.«


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