Bund für Soziale Verteidigung/Federation for Social Defence

Type of Organisation NGO
Areas of Interest Conflict Prevention,Gender,Preventive Action,Dialogue and mediation,Peace education,(Civil) Conflict Settlement & Transformation
Organisation's Activities Fundraising,Networking,Training,Research
Organisation Address
Schwarzer Weg 8
32423 Minden
About this organisation

The Federation for Social Defence (German: Bund für Soziale Verteidigung, BSV) is an independent, non-governmental organisation based in Minden, Germany, that unites people and organisations of pacifist and antimilitarist conviction.

The BSV was founded in 1989 as an umbrella organisation to promote social defence and other alternatives to the military, and to work for total disarmament. Its creation was the result of a big conference on social or civilian-based defence held in Minden, Germany, a year earlier.

Milestones in the history of the BSV were, inter alia, the creation and coordination of the Balkan Peace Team (1994-2001), the establishment of the Civil Peace Services in 2001, and the initiation of the nonviolence training campaign “Paths Out of Violence”. Currently (2015), we actively support civil rights groups in Belarus and Ukraine, are engaged in advocacy work to promote the concept of Unarmed Civilian Peacekeeping (UCP), and seek to counter the militarization of youth in (German) schools through peace education (projects/programmes).

The BSV currently has about 450 members, including 40 organisations. About 1,000 - 1,500 people regularly support us with their donations; our quarterly newsletter has 6.000 subscribers interested in the latest news of the German and international peace movement, and in the workings of the BSV.

Working Groups
- Gender and peace (founded in 2012)
- Unarmed Civilian Peacekeeping
- Peace Taxes (handled by the Network Peace Taxes)
- Institute for Peace Work and Nonviolent Conflict Transformation (www.ifgk.de, an independent research institute)

The BSV is a member of several national and international platforms, networks and organizations, including War Resisters' International, the German Platform for Conflict Transformation, the German umbrella of peace organizations “Cooperation for Peace“, Nonviolent Peaceforce Alliance and the European Network for Civil Peace Initiatives