Bona Fides Association together with Reha-Südwest are looking for 2 participants (citizens or residents of Poland, aged 18-30) for long-term positions at an educational center for children and young adults with mental disabilities: Bregtalschule Furtwangen in Germany, helping to prepare its students for future independent life!

Place: Furtwangen, Germany
Start: January/February 2024 – December 2024
Duration: 11-12 months

About hosting organisation and the project

Reha-Südwest is an organisation formed by parents in 1960s, which originally existed for the purpose of helping its own members. Today it is a organisation that unites several institutions related to education and personal care, with headquarters in Karlsruhe and around 2000 employees. Bregtalschule Furtwangen is one of Reha-Südwest’s institutions.

Bregtalschule Furtwangen is an educational centre for children and young adults with mental (and in some cases accompanying physical) disabilities. The school is educating people of different age groups: from 6 up to 20 years old. There are different kinds of classes at Bregtalschule, all of which consist of a small group of five to ten pupils and aim to prepare their pupils for future independent life. Children, teachers and educators do not only have regular lessons, such as the German language and mathematics, but also cook and clean together, go shopping and perform other important household tasks. Additionally to that, there are singing, art and sports lessons, including horse-riding, swimming, riding a bicycle and playing football. New classes have been introduced recently, offering among others opportunities to enjoy outside activities and to work with tools.

Another important distinguishing point of Bregtalschule is its boarding school, where pupils stay over the week before they go home on Friday after school. The boarding school offers 35 to 45 places for children split into five smaller groups, each of which has three educators. The life of such a group reminds of the one a regular family would lead: educators and children cook and have meals together, go for walks and organise leisure activities in school-free time depending on the interests and hobbies of everyone.

Bregtalschule has a long experience of hosting volunteers, both German and international. The task of the volunteer would be assisting the teacher of a specific small class and its pupils during their daily activities according to their needs. Volunteers will also work in the boarding school (usually one afternoon per week) after classes. Besides, the volunteers have an opportunity to get to know other areas, such as speech-therapy, snoezelen and physiotherapy. The volunteers are also encouraged to bring their own ideas and, depending on their interests, conduct own projects, while of course receiving the necessary support from a professional member of the school’s well-trained staff.


Through work with our children the volunteer will have a chance to learn about various forms of disabilities. It is also possible to ask the class teacher about reasons and goals of an activity. After classes there are regular (normally weekly) meetings dedicated to the children of the class. 2 seminars as part of ESC program. Weekly meetings with mentors, experience exchange with other volunteers. Additional courses, such as First-Aid course, internal seminars dedicated to autism, epilepsy are possible.

Participant’s profile

Basic or fluent German skills are very helpful, helping the integration happen quicker. A volunteer will perform a roll similar to the teachers’/educators’ work at school. He or she will always receive help if a difficult situation occurs and will be a part of an educational team. An interest and/or experience in pedagogic and social work is of a big advantage. An interest in and open mind for disabilities, as well as desire to help people by improving their lives, is expected. Physical contact while assisting children at their tasks or hygiene-related routine can be necessary.

Accommodation and transport

Foreign volunteers will live together in an apartment, sharing a modern kitchen and a bathroom; each will have a private room. The kitchen is fully equipped for cooking. The flat is situated in the middle of the town, just a two-minute walk away from the local university, a supermarket and the bus station. It takes about half an hour on foot or fifteen minutes by bicycle to get from the apartment to school. Transport: Regional transport ticket is provided, covering about 1/4 of Baden-Württemberg (area close to Offenburg, Basel, Freiburg, Konstanz) after school end and on weekends and holidays.

Furtwangen im Schwarzwald

Furtwangen is a small town situated in a rural mountain area of the Black Forest in south-west Germany. The river Danube has its origin some five kilometres from the town centre.

Furtwangen is famous for its beautiful nature, sports opportunities, such as hiking, mountain-biking and skiing, and the local university – Hochschule Furtwangen, where 3,000 students are doing their studies, among which over 700 are international students from Europe, Asia and South America. The school offers its foreign volunteers an opportunity to take German classes at the university. There are also a number of various leisure activities at the Hochschule Furtwangen, such as ballroom dances, Zumba, table games, climbing, badminton, volleyball, football and basketball – these are organised by the students themselves, and it is often possible for young people who do not study to take part in them.The project is designed to facilitate the integration of the long-term EVS volunteers into the local society. The goal of the project is to help the participating volunteers to gain and strengthen not only their linguistic, cross-cultural and professional, but also their social competences and skills. With a duration of 11 months, the EVS volunteers will accompany life and work at Bregtalschule during the whole school year, starting in September and finishing at the end of July of the following year. Both the volunteers and the school community have a chance during this period of time to present and implement in daily work their cultural traditions and festivals. Everyone can learn from the others.


To apply for this opportunity please send your CV and motivation letter (in English) to and Please write in the title: ESC in FurtwangenGermany.