WOW-Day 2022: SAGST Matching Fund for Ukraine Emergency Aid

Colorfully painted children's hands hold together
Photo: C. Fischer

Every autumn, Waldorf students around the world organise donations for less well-resourced Waldorf institutions in other countries on Waldorf One World Day (WOW-Day). Thanks to a matching fund from SAGST, in addition to the money raised in this way, the same amount will be paid out to aid projects for Ukraine in 2022.

The day of action coordinated by the “Friends of Waldorf Education” has been an expression of worldwide solidarity for many years: Waldorf schools and preschools, as well as curative educational and social therapy institutions, use it to help Waldorf schools and preschools abroad that have to manage without any government support. The motto for the 2022–23 school year is “Education for Future”. The coronavirus crisis has put an enormous strain on government budgets. As a result, spending on education is also coming under heavy pressure, especially in poorer countries, putting already existing economic inequalities in danger of worsening. “We started working with WOW-Day as early as 1994 to ensure that children and young people all over the world have access to Waldorf education and thus to a holistic educational concept, regardless of their social background”, reports project coordinator Johanna Ruber. “In this context, the pupils of the participating schools organise a wide variety of fundraising activities to support disadvantaged children as well as to counter educational injustice on an individual and global scale with a positive initiative.” The fundraising campaign will start on 29 September 2022.

“In 2020, our foundation used an extra budget to double the WOW-Day donations so that they could respond to the extreme strain many institutions were under due to the coronavirus pandemic”, explains SAGST project manager Andreas Rebmann. “Two years later, the Ukraine war has cast a dark shadow over Eastern and Central Europe, and millions of people are fleeing their homes. In view of this dramatic situation, we have decided to once again set up a 50,000 euro matching fund in 2022.” The money provided will go towards the Ukraine aid organised by the “Friends of Waldorf Education”, such as emergency educational offers for refugees or support for destroyed facilities in the war zones. This commitment complements the anniversary donation of 300,000 euros with which SAGST has already endowed the “Auf Augenhöhe” Fund for refugees and newcomers from Ukraine on the occasion of its 30th anniversary.