"Giving is happiness" is the message delivered by the association Goldenes Wiener Herz ("Golden Viennese Heart"). During WIENWOCHE, the association's employees are out and about in the public to explain the situation of people that beg and the infuriating practice of banning begging. The promoters themselves know the everyday life of the beggars first hand.
More and more people are forced to beg in order to survive. However, as beggars, they are confronted with an increasing amount of harassment by the police and the municipal authorities (key phrase "ban on begging") as well as the media denigration (reports on the "beggar mafia"). The association, Goldenes Wiener Herz, confronts the criminalization of poverty and, with the campaign, Don't make such a fuss â€“ Hire me!, fights for the betterment of beggars on a social, economic and political level.
Within the scope of this pilot project, the association employs people who have a great deal of experience with begging and are currently out of work. During WIENWOCHE, these employees are out and about in the city for the association. Easily recognized by the association's special attire and furnished with informational material, they explain the everyday life of people who beg. In personal conversations, they familiarize passers-by with both their own life experiences as well as the experiences of others concerned. The aim is to convey a differentiated image of "the" beggars in Vienna and elsewhere.
The association, Goldenes Wiener Herz, offers the dedicated promoters regular working hours and a fair hourly wage for their work with the public. People are allowed to make other people in public areas aware of their predicament and ask them for help â€“ this was expressively defined in a decision made by the Austrian Constitutional Court in 2012. Along the same lines, people affected by poverty can confront others eye to eye as employees of the association, hold discussions with them and convince them that giving makes you happy!
In cooperation with DAS GOLDENE WIENER HERZ . Supported by Ã–H Bundesvertretung, Ã–H Uni Wien and many donors.