Visit to Copenhagen

2014.09.23-25, Denmark


Danish partner organization Aktivitetscentre Sundholm (Activity Center Sundholm) hosted the project visit in Copenhagen, where the participants learnt more about Danish partner organization, saw their centre and main activities, also had a chance to visit many other centres and projects:



Kofoed’s School is an independent, non-profit humanitarian organization that provides help in order to promote self-reliance for people with socio- economical problems.

The school operates on a pedagogic model – help to self-help – to address problems associated with long-term unemployment, social isolation and loneliness.

Kofoed’s School refers to their users as “students” to emphasize the role of education in developing people’s self-esteem and abilities. They do not associate education exclusively with narrow vocational qualifications or work competencies, but they recognize that learning often is the first important step out of inactivity.

  • The activities

The school in Copenhagen provides education, supported workshops, counseling and guidance, shower and laundry facilities, clothes and furniture, a library and a cafeteria.

  • Education

The school’s education department offers each semester about 150 courses in disciplines such as EDB math, science, Danish and foreign languages, philosophy, psychology, music, art and sport etc.

In addition the school at the moment runs tree educational and practical job projects especially aimed at getting students back to work or giving them a chance to join the labour market for the first time. Two of these projects are established with support from the EU.

  • Workshops

The school offers access to around 30 workshop courses, e.g.: kitchen and cafeteria, cleaning, carpentry, wood workshop, electrical workshop, print workshop, clothes and furniture depot, hair dresser, car repair shop, transportation services, driving school, ship project, Greenlander workshops etc.

Students undertake much of the school’s building and equipment maintenance, while assembly work, printing, grounds maintenance and gardening is delivered through small commercial contracts with local businesses and residents. Some of the workshops also produce goods and services for the school and for external customers.

The workshops cover a range of skills and abilities. In The Production Workshop, which assemble electrical components, semi-manufactured products and provide postal administration services, the students can work in hourly modules, with a maximum of three modules per day. In emergencies, people in financial crisis can access this workshop to earn money for food and other basic needs, thus avoiding the need for begging on the street.

  • The Kofoed Dollar

The school operates its own internal currency called Kofoed Dollars. Students working in some of the workshops can use the Kofoed Dollars they earn to buy items such as food, drinks and cigarettes either within the school or at participating shops locally.

  • Consultation and guidance

The school provides counseling service, vocational guidance, legal support and job support.

Each student is assigned a social advisor who conducts the initial assessment and work with the student to develop an action plan setting out the targets for the student’s stay at the school.

  • Housing for young homeless

Kofoeds’s School runs a hostel for young homeless people and provides housing for young people at three different addresses in Copenhagen.

Socially excluded Greenlanders

Kofoed’s School has for many years worked with socially excluded Greenlanders. The school has a special Greenlander section and several workshops aimed at Greenlanders. A house in Valby near Copenhagen was recently established as a settlement for Greenland women.

Apart from the activities in Copenhagen we are cooperating on activities, education and treatment of alcohol and drug abuse for Greenlanders in two big cities in Jutland: Aalborg and Esbjerg.

  • Kofoeds Cellar for homeless people

Located at Kultorvet in the middle of Copenhagen the Kofoeds Cellar serves as a drop in day centre facility offering food, clothing, shower, a laundry, health care etc. for homeless people.

  • The organisation

Kofoed’s School is a self-governing institution with a board and a council. The director of the school, Robert Olsen, is responsible for daily management.

Kofoed’s School in Copenhagen was founded in 1928. In 2000 the School opened a new department in Århus, Jutland. The school is centrally placed in town and can hold about 180 students.

Kofoed’s School also has sister schools outside Denmark – in Poland, Estonia, Lithuania, The Czech Republic and Armenia.

  • The students

More than 600 students attend the main school in Copenhagen in any single day, i.e. more than 3000 different persons on annual basis.



Bybi (pronounced “Bjubee”) which means City Bee in English, is a Danish social cooperative enterprise that employs no less than 3 million bees! The busy bees help to improve the urban environment and unlock the social and economic benefits of sustainable beekeeping and honey production in beautiful Copenhagen. In addition, the profits made by the Bybi employees are reinvested in the cooperative’s social and environmental activities.

The nine people behind Bybi have, since its beginning in 2010, developed a unique social responsibility partnership with a number of Denmark’s top businesses. Danish enterprises adopt Bybi’s beehives, which are placed on their rooftops or in their grounds. Obviously Bybi makes sure everyone feels comfortable with the small buzzing employees, and uses the apiary to train the long-term unemployed, homeless and people with alcohol and drug problems in beekeeping and honey production.

Visit the Bybi website here:



Street Voices (Gadens Stemmer)

Street Voices is a Copenhagen-based social enterprise for the socially vulnerable that the ordinary labour market is unable to cater for. We work to create meaningful employment and an enhanced quality of life – with the ultimate aim of helping each person become independent of government benefits.

We offer guided walking tours that focus on the guide’s personal story of a life on the dark side of society. Street Voices gives the socially vulnerable a voice in the public debate and an opportunity to support themselves – and brings people together in a unique way across social divides.

  • The tours

Experience the hidden corners of Copenhagen when our street guides show you their world. Street Voices enables the silent to make themselves heard and talk about their lives on the edge. Our guides have each created a special city tour that includes stories from different kinds of lives as homeless, drug and alcohol abuser or in other ways as socially outcasts. Our street experts all want to fight prejudice and ignorance about the socially vulnerable in today’s Denmark on their very different kinds of tour of Copenhagen. What does it mean to sleep on the street all year round? Where can the homeless go? Is it possible to be all alone in the world among so many people? Where do you sleep when you do not have a bed?

We offer routes across Copenhagen – as well as canal tours. Customized tours are available for groups where you decide the time and place. Our open tours are available to share with friends and family or to join on an individual basis.

  • Why Street Voices?

On our walks through Copenhagen, you will be able to discuss how the living conditions of the socially marginalized can be improved. Street Voices are important because they make the invisible visible and support the vulnerable in gaining unconventional and flexible employment in which they are able to contribute their resources for the benefit of themselves as well as society. Our guides have grown as the project has expanded, and the boost to their self-confidence when they show an attentive group around their world should not be underestimated. Since 1 June 2010, more than 15.000 participants have eagerly asked questions and been keen to gain an insight into an alien world and attempt to overcome their prejudices about some of society’s most vulnerable people.

  • Background

In 2010, the NGO Projekt Udenfor took the initiative to set up Street Voices (formerly known as Poverty Walks) which was a pilot project from January 2010 to May 2011. The project was funded with both private and public donations. In 2011 Street Voices continued as an employment scheme under the Municipality of Copenhagen.

In July 2013, Street Voices was established in its present form, as a social enterprise.