Social Entrepreneurship in German Child and Youth Welfare

Term Paper, 2017

13 Pages, Grade: 1,0


Table of Contents

1. Introduction

3. Definition Child- and Youth Welfare

4. Social entrepreneurship in the German youth welfare system

5. Introduction of a German social entrepreneur in the youth welfare system


Internet sources

1. Introduction

In the history of the German child- and youth welfare system, the free public welfare, as the closest partner of the state, has a long legally protected priority over the state itself when it comes to offering on social benefits. There was hardly any competition from other providers or private service providers. Unlike then in other European countries, the German welfare state model, with its historical background and laws, strongly emphasized the care aspect and promoted the alimentation and passivation of clients. Entrepreneurial thinking and action was severely hampered by these conditions. (Vgl. Kolhoff, Ludger 2002: S. 17) In addition, the situation in the Federal Republic of Germany developed in such a way that benefits were financed to an increasing extent directly or indirectly from public budgets.

However, this situation has changed fundamentally. Since the mid-1980s, legislative changes have removed the primacy of free welfare in many areas. The social sector has been transformed in parts into a social market. Meanwhile, in many areas, such as nursing or the hospital sector, the state treats charitable organizations and private providers alike. This opened the market for private providers and social entrepreneurs. But despite all these advances, the major charities and the head organizations of welfare still have great market power. Not least, the benefits of child and youth welfare services or the provision of the same are heavily regulated by law. (Vgl. Zerrle, Karl-Heinz 2003: S. 2)

This raises the question as to what extent social entrepreneurship in German child an youth welfare services is made possible and permitted by the legislator or the public authorities. To understand this, one must first define social entrepreneurship and describe how it applies to the children and youth welfare system in Germany. Subsequently, the current extent to which social entrepreneurship is permitted by the state and public authorities must be explained. Understanding this defines the role of a social entrepreneur in German children and youth welfare.

2. Definition of Social Entrepreneurship

So-called social entrepreneurs, have a socio-political mission. Theyself define them in such a way that they seek and find innovative solutions to social or ecological problems in their entrepreneurial activity.

With their ideas and their dissemination on a local, national or even international level, they want to create social added value from the middle of society, through their entrepreneurial creativity and the resources available to their businesses. Their goal ist o maximize social benefits, while profit is only in the background and this is a fundamental difference between the social and conventional entrepreneur They are currently challenged in the fields where public institutions, welfare state or non-governmental organizations have difficulties. This is where they work with creative thinking, resources and cost efficiency. (Vgl. Hackenberg, Helga u. a. 2011: S. 11) With this balancing act between entrepreneurial thinking and social added value, over the last decade social entrepreneurship has become a new phenomenon that redefines and shapes the way we think about social value creation. (Vgl. Mair, Johanna u. a. 2006: S. 1) In terms of growth, too, it can be said that in 2015, in the European Union, there was one social enterprise behind one in four start-ups. These social enterprises can be non-profit, but also for-profit companies. (Vgl. Social Startups Media UG [Hrsg] (o. J.)

Unknown to many, entrepreneurship has a long tradition in German society. Social reformers such as Friedrich Wilhelm Raiffeisen and Wilhelm Merton worked as social innovators in the 19th century, as did countless other founders and entrepreneurs. Both emerged as initiators and founders of socio-politically significant institutions, However, a detailed description of the historical background is omitted in order not to go beyond the scope of this work. So while the phenomenon of social entrepreneurship is nothing new, it is the strategies of the growing social entrepreneuship industry already. Although their goals differ from other companies, their appearance, marketing and practices are similar to those of traditional companies. (Vgl. Hackenberg, Helga u. a. 2011: S. 12)

3. Definition Child- and Youth Welfare

As the field of child and youth welfare services is already very extensive due to its diverse legal regulations, a detailed description of all areas will be omitted. Rather, a focus is placed on the topics relevant to the research question. For the sake of clarity, the legal basis is presented only as a mention to the paragraph, without presenting the exact contents.

The term child and youth welfare services refers to all services and tasks of the public and independent providers, which are provided for children, adolescents and their families. (Vgl. Deutscher Verein für öffentliche und private Fürsorge [Hrsg] 2007: S. 549) The legal basis for this is the Social statute VIII, which is specified in laws oft he federal states. The tasks of child and youth welfare services are described in more detail under § 1 Abs. 3 SGB VIII and the services under § 2 SGB VIII. However, a comprehensive listing of all tasks and services would far exceed the scope of this work. In summary, however, as described in § 1 Abs. 1 SGB VIII, it can be stated that all services and tasks are concentrated in favor of young people and families. Examples include outpatient offers, educational counseling or residential forms of housing. The services are rendered by the youth welfare offices of the cities or districts as well as by independent agencies such as initiatives, associations, private sector organizations or foundations. Here, as regulated in § 3 Abs. 1 SGB VIII, a manifold amount of social companies and welfare organisations wanted by the legislature. (Vgl. Bundesministerium für Familie, Senioren, Frauen und Jugend [Hrsg] 2014: S. 13) According to § 4 Abs. 2 SGB VIII, the public institutions are subject to the so-called subsidiarity principle, which stipulates that they should refrain from their own measures, as far as suitable facilities, services and events can be operated or created in due time by acknowledged institutions of free child and youth welfare. With this principle, a carrier plurality is guaranteed, which in turn constitutes an important basis for the exercise of the wish and vote right of the beneficiaries. (Vgl. Monopolkommission [Hrsg] 2012/2013: S. 130) Of the benefits of child and youth welfare a large number for the client is free of charge or associated with a certain cost contribution. The financial burden of child and youth welfare is borne by the state. (Vgl. Zentrum Bayern Familie und Soziales, Bayerisches Landesjugendamt [Hrsg] 2017a)

To receive youth welfare benefits, such as ambulatory social workers who work with the families in their households, it requires the existence of conditions, which are determined by the state.

The youth welfare office will determine whether the family or the young person can solve the problems on their own or with the help of the social environment. If this is not the case and the performance conditions are established, there is a legal claim. (Vgl. Zentrum Bayern Familie und Soziales, Bayerisches Landesjugendamt [Hrsg] 2017b)

On the other hand, other services, such as educational counseling centers, are financed or co-financed by the public agencies, therefore assessment by the youth welfare office is not required here. (Vgl. Zentrum Bayern Familie und Soziales, Bayerisches Landesjugendamt [Hrsg] 2017c) In addition to the educational services to education from the sgb VIII, there are other youth welfare benefits. For example, the acquisition of costs for kindergarten and other help that unbureaucratic and fast to obtain

In the choice of the respective service or the provider, however, in principle the wish and suffrage must be observed. This states that the beneficiaries may choose between facilities and services of the different providers and their wishes regarding the organization of the assistance should be respected, insofar as possible. (Vgl. § 5 Abs. 1 Nr. 1 SGB VIII)

Looking at the financial resources deployed and the growth in child and youth services and services, it can be seen that the total expenditure on public child and youth welfare between 2001 and 2012, with a decline in under-27s, is 19 billion Euro increased to over 32 billion euros. (Vgl. Monopolkommission [Hrsg] 2012/2013: S. 132 - 133) The child and youth welfare service has thus become a growth industry, which is of considerable economic importance. (Vgl. Monopolkommission [Hrsg] 2012/2013: S. 128)

4. Social entrepreneurship in the German youth welfare system

In order to consider the central question of this thesis, to what extent the state authorizes social entrepreneurship in child and youth welfare services, a first look should be taken at the system of service provision in the Federal Republic of Germany. However, a full account of the facts can not be given as this would go far beyond the scope of the housework. In this regard, selected points on the subject are presented below.

The entire system of child and youth welfare services of the Federal Republic of Germany, for historical reasons, is characterized by a partnership and close cooperation of public authorities and providers of free welfare. (Vgl. Monopolkommission [Hrsg] 2012/2013: S. 148) The services offered by social services were dominated by public agencies and the head organizations of welfare. (Vgl. Zerrle, Karl-Heinz 2003: S. 2) This construct of a decades-long so-called closed shop made it and still makes it sometimes difficult for third parties to offer services in the child and youth welfare market. The legislative initiative concerning the social law book VIII in 1990 has led to at least a partial appreciation of private organizations that are not organized in the head organisations of welfare. Despite these changes, however, there are still many privileges that are closely linked to the status of non-profit providers. (Vgl. Monopolkommission [Hrsg] 2012/2013: S. 148)

One such privilege would be for non-profit organizations to enjoy tax privileges over private providers, such as social entrepreneurs. These tax benefits include exemption from corporation tax, trade and property tax and sales tax. However, this subsidization by the state leads to a distortion of competition between the providers. For example, it can be assumed that where a charitable company with a paid offer comes into direct competition with a noncharitable company of a social entrepreneur, the non-profit provider has better competitive opportunities. (Vgl. Monopolkommission [Hrsg] 2012/2013: S. 149 - 150)

Another, in this case institutional, obstacle that exists on the market for child and youth welfare from the state for social entrepreneurs is the Youth Aid Committee, called “Jugendhilfeausschuss”. This is the regional, central steering committee of the youth welfare office and thus the child and youth welfare in the respective area of responsibility. He has decision-making rights in matters of youth welfare and decides on the use of funds. The youth aid committee consists of three fifths of members of the public youth welfare service and two fifths of representatives of the free youth welfare.


Excerpt out of 13 pages


Social Entrepreneurship in German Child and Youth Welfare
Protestant University of Applied Sciences Nuremberg  (Masterstudiengang Sozialmanagement)
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ISBN (eBook)
ISBN (Book)
Entrepreneurship, Jugendamt, Kinder- und Jugendhilfe
Quote paper
Sozialpädagoge (B.A.) Maximilian Klopf (Author), 2017, Social Entrepreneurship in German Child and Youth Welfare, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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