»The foundation is a lively place where people get connected with each other « - Interview with Stephanie Handtmann

How did you come to Bewegungsstiftung?

»I know a lot of people in the eco-centre in Verden from our common political work. The idea for the foundation was created there and I found it amazing from the beginning on - to bring together money and movement. The initial starting point to become a founder myself, was when my parents gave my a little amount of money. I didn't need this money to live and wanted to hand it on. Apart from that I found it great that the foundation consults people from social movements in its boards and thus use their competences. I wanted to participate in it and bring in my experience.«

What kind of experiences are that?

»I work full-time for Attac where we deal with the negative consequences of globalisation. This includes a lot of issues - the aftermath of the financial crisis, the privatisation of public property, the question of a just distribution of common wealth, social issues... That's why I'm close to the topics of the foundation. Moreover, working for Attac means working a lot of within volunteer structures - which you also have in the foundation. Although I don't like the word 'volunteer'. I prefer to talk about 'committment'.«

Are you also involved in the foundation?

»Yes. I take part in the consulting of projects. Together with other founders and Jochen Stay as an employee of the foundation, I advise a funded project. During my own work I made the experience that such conversations with outsiders can be very productive. But my work for the foundation gives also something back to me.«

In what way?

»I get to know other projects from the inside. In addition to this, it's simply fun to meet many great politically active people - among the founders as well as within the funded projects. That's what I appreciate most in the foundation: It is a lively place, where people get connected with each other. There are a lot of people from many social movements who come to the meetings, a good cross-section of the different groups. That's like some sort of family reunion.«

Apropos family - what's your life outside the foundation like?

»I live with my family and have two daughters, who are eight and ten years old. My partner and I are both working - sometimes is pretty difficult to juggle all of these things. Private and political issues are quite entangled in my life. But that's not bothering me, on the contrary: I'm very happy about the privilege to make my living with my political activities.«

Is there a political topic, that's dear to your heart and that moves you?

»Yes, my secret favourite topic is the scandalisation of lobbyism, which is more powerful in this country than the parliament. I think it's great, what the Cologne based association LobbyControl has achieved in this field. It's a pretty young organisation, which is being supported with a basic campaign funding by the foundation. I'm very impressed by their work and am very happy about their success.«


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