«Blue Bus» Project
Since 2002 Inner Wheel District 86 has supported the "Blue Bus", a youth centre on wheels, located in Märkisch-Oderland County close to the Polish border. This region suffers from a constantly decreasing population and an extraordinary high unemployment rate.
The idea to have the „Blue Bus“ as a District project was introduced by the former District Chairman 2002/03 Veronika Bleyl. Since then it has been the charity project of all succeeded chairmen of being supported financially by most all Inner Wheel Clubs of District 86.
The „Blue Bus“ is a 14m (45 feet) long bendy bus that functions as a mobile youth centre. In this structurally underdeveloped region of former Eastern Germany it provides sustainable and reliable care for children and teenagers after school. The „Blue Bus“ stops 5 days a week at 5 villages and offers in each village for 6 hours a broad variance of services. Approximately 120 children per week are benefiting from the „ Blue Bus“. Furthermore, since 2016 children of a nearby home for refugees have been integrated.
The team of the „Blue Bus“ consists of two social workers , one intern and a retired bus driver. Services range from supporting homework, courses in music and arts, various sports and further group activities.
In this county with a poorly developed infrastructure, the „Blue Bus“ is the only offer of support and supervised leisure for children and teenagers after school. It provides a value based education with a christian background.
Since the beginning of the project every year in September a group of interested Inner Wheel friends of D86 has traveled to Seelow, the homebase of the „Blue Bus“ in order to get an impression of the activities of the project and to reinforce to the personal relationship to the team and the kids.
After many years of service the „Blue Bus“ needed to be replaced. With the support of many Inner Wheel friends of D86, a new bus could be purchased. The interior fittings of the bus, such as a kitchen and playing area will be done in May and will thereafter the new bus will be put into service .
We are proud to continously having supported this sustainable project which has a high acceptance of our Inner Wheel Clubs in D 86.
Teaching children ethical values and principals will enable them to become valuable members of our society. I’m sure that also my successors will continue to help that the „Blue Bus“ keeps on rolling for many years to come.
Anette Haas District Chairman 2016/17 Inner Wheel District 86