In Evinghausen, the weekly meeting of our student company Jamii unfortunately always competes with the school strikes of Fridays For Future – a circumstance that I very much regret. As a school in the countryside we depend on the few school buses that bring our students home twice a day, sometimes over long distances, so we can’t change our meeting times. Does this mean that our Jamiis can’t get involved with the climate now? Certainly not – on the contrary, I claim that working in a Nyendo student company is active and forward-looking climate protection. Social entrepreneurship, based on a “friendship economy”, is the nucleus of a socially and ecologically compatible way of doing business – quite in keeping with Rudolf Steiner’s social tripartite structure. I would like to cite Prof. Dr. Günter Faltin as my justification (for more information, please refer to his outstanding book “David versus Goliath”). In a newsletter announcing his Entrepreneurship Summit in Berlin in October 2019, he said:
“Although we actually have everything, we continue to buy and consume. Skillful marketing by large companies not only awakens needs, but also generates them.
This development endangers the survival of mankind!
The good news: The deficiency has been remedied. A dream of mankind came true. By historical standards, we live in an affluent society.
The bad news: We feel little of it. Where the deficiency is eliminated, it is artificially produced. We are driving in the wrong direction. Our rising consumption level is a model for the populous countries of the world, which are only at the beginning of such a consumption culture. There is a growing realization that we must stop this process. We live in a world in which the Goliaths of the markets operate an economy that endangers the survival of mankind just to secure their own existence.
How did we get there? Today, the production of goods is no longer the bottleneck. The sale is. In order to increase sales and profits, a huge sales machinery is ramped up. With scientific meticulousness we are illuminated, always new needs are tickled out. It is the growth strategies that determine our social development. The dynamics of this process are increasingly pushing politics, education and critical voices aside […].
At the Entrepreneurship Summit we will show how everyone can ensure ecological and social values in society, develop a new awareness of economic activity and at the same time create social and individual added value. Our speakers will show how we can get out of this impasse and tackle these tasks in a practical, realistic and – in many ways already recognizable today – practical way”.
By working in one of our student companies, committed students can assume responsibility within a real framework of action and test themselves as social entrepreneurs. Extracurricular learning and action pedagogy – these catchwords can often be heard when it comes to opening up opportunities for pupils not only to learn cognitively for school or to live in the virtual world, but also to experience something about the world in contact with reality and about their own possibilities for shaping it, i.e. about its self-efficacy. Today’s students have a great need for suitable fields of action, they want to make a difference – just think of Fridays for Future! In a globalized world, economic issues are crucial for the future of humanity. Nyendo offers young people who intuitively understand this the opportunity to train the necessary skills.
Nevertheless, it is a pity that the students in Evinghausen have to choose between an engagement with Fridays For Future and our student company Jamii. But the above insights hopefully put this decision into a less drastic frame of reference.
Written by Dr. Alexander Piecha