Today saw an important guest visit the BVB Learning Centre. As part of its comprehensive commitment to the fight against racism and discrimination, Borussia Dortmund welcomed Thomas de Maiziére to Signal Iduna Park. The Interior Minister visited Germany's largest stadium at his own request, where he expressed his satisfaction with BVB's intensive and sustainable work in this area.
"The word integration is experienced in quite a particular way in the sport of football," said BVB President Dr. Reinhard Rauball at the event at Signal Iduna Park, which lasted approximately 90 minutes. It was also attended by Hans-Joachim Watzke (Chief Executive Officer), Daniel Lörcher (Head of Fan Affairs at Borussia Dortmund) as well as employees of the BVB Learning Centre. "We want to make use of our social responsibility in order to protect young people in particular from any attempts by the right to influence them." The Interior Minister was able to gain an impression of how that idea could be put into practice during a workshop with children and youths in the BVB Learning Centre.
Beforehand, Lörcher and Marco Rühmann (Project Leader for CSR at Borussia Dortmund and the Head of the BVB "leuchte auf" (light up) foundation), had already brought de Maizière up to speed on the key elements of Borussia Dortmund's anti-discrimination work and the work of the foundation. The Interior Minister subsequently drew a very positive conclusion of the Bundesliga club's efforts: "Preventive work to combat right-wing extremism is the duty of the state, but in particular of society. BVB and its good name are engaged in a sustainable manner in the battle against extremism and racism. I believe that the approach and the objectives being pursued in Dortmund are absolutely correct. There are no taboos here; instead existing problems are clearly identified and approached." BVB President Dr. Reinhard Rauball added: "We're taking a clear message from this event: Don't take this issue lightly!"
Further information on BVB's "leuchte auf" foundation and on the BVB Learning Centre can be found online at http://www.bvb.de/Der-BVB/Stiftung/Ueber-uns. Peter Flore