International Learning

We take up suggestions from our members in Africa and Asia. We support the inter-religious dialogue. We connect and educate people and reflect on international ideas of education and develop them furthermore. Our variety of extraordinary language courses completes our program.


Frauke Bürgers
Officer for Partnerships
Rudolfstr. 137
D-42285 Wuppertal
+49-(0)202 89004-188
Elke Patalla
Administrative Assistant
Rudolfstraße 137
Wuppertal , 42285 Germany
+49 (0)202 89004-180
Matthias Börner
Head of International Diaconia
Grete-Reich-Weg 9
Bielefeld , 33617 Germany
+49 (0)521 144-4524

Our seminars 2019 according to our fields of activities

Our events are offers within the meaning of the 1st Continuing Education Act NRW. We are a member of the Evangelischer Erwachsenenbildungswerk Nordrhein e.V., the supporting association of a further education institution in North Rhine-Westphalia (WbG NRW in the new version of 14 April 2000) recognised according to § 14 of the 1st Continuing Education Act, which is responsible for the planning and implementation of the further education events we offer.


  • In the world we live from - Churches facing ecological challenges Encounter college with UEM churches in Sumatra

    Home to orangutans, elephants and tigers, breathtaking landscapes and invaluable cultural wealth - that is one side of Sumatra. Huge plantations that give way to forests, volcanic eruptions from which thousands flee, mining and industries that poison the environment - that's the other side that always makes people feel helpless and powerless. How do the churches react? What are they doing to preserve creation? But also to protect people from the threatening forces of nature? What role does creation play in their spirituality? What ideas are there for shaping economies in such a way that they do not destroy the foundations of life?

    The conference brings together pastors of the Toba-Batak and Karo-Batak churches, two UEM member churches in North Sumatra, with pastors from Germany. Together they visit plantations, camps for volcanic refugees and industrial sites where ecological challenges become particularly clear. In addition to detailed phases of direct exchange among each other, a weekend stay in different congregations is planned.

    Accommodation is simple, partly in double rooms. English language skills are required.

    Target group:

    Pastors, full-time and honorary employees of the Rhenish church, Westfalian church, Reformed church and Lippe church


    4-17 November 2019: Sumatra

    12 September 2019 Preparation day (mandatory)

    12 December 2019 Follow-up day (mandatory)

    The conference is led by:

    Dietrich Weinbrenner, VEM

    NN, Gereja Batak Karo Protestan (GBKP)


    1500 € (incl. flight, basic accommodation and partial board)


    North Sumatra / Indonesia

    Preparation and follow-up days: On the Holy Mountain | Conference Centre, Wuppertal

    Contact: Elke Patalla, UEM


    Joint Pastoral Coleg in the Institute for Education, Training and Further Education of the EKvW (Pastoral College No. 8.1.9)

    Pastoralkolleg[at] ,



  • Study trip South Africa

    Both countries - South Africa and Germany - have experienced in the last century inhuman systems, their end and democratic and social new beginnings. Both countries are constantly struggling to find a way to remember these times. How is remembrance and reconciliation possible under changing social conditions? Places of remembrance play an important role in both countries. But places of remembrance should also always be places of reconciliation. This becomes particularly clear in South Africa on the prisoner island Robben Island, when former prisoners take over parts of the visitor guidance. Remembering and reconciling is not the only challenge in social and political new beginnings. A further task is the restoration of justice. Looking at the social changes, it is clear that this is the much more difficult task. People who experience that justice does not happen to them do not experience reconciliation for themselves. Reconciliation is not possible without justice. In both countries it is shown that there are no simple answers. In South Africa this is particularly evident in the land question. Remembrance, reconciliation and justice are still the task of civil societies and churches. The purpose of this study trip is to exchange the various possibilities of remembrance, reconciliation and the question of justice. In doing so, impulses are to be passed on among the participants of both countries in both directions.

    In addition to thematic workshops with South Africans, visits to memorial sites and projects in the field of reconciliation and justice, there will also be time to experience Cape Town.


    - 1.950 € regular price in double room

    - 2,150 € Solidarity price in double room

    They enable other travellers to take part in the trip at a higher price.

    - Single room supplement 250 €

    - Reduced price possible on request

    Inclusive services

    - flights incl. airport tax and kerosene surcharge

    - CO2 emission compensation

    - Overnight stays in a hotel (double room), simple standard

    - usually half board

    - Transport within South Africa

    - A study day to prepare the trip in Wuppertal

    - Entrance fees for museums etc.

    Due to the subsidized package price, unused services will not be refunded.

    Not included services

    - travel cancellation insurance

    - Excursion to the Cape of Good Hope or whale watching

    Cancellation fees

    In case of cancellation you will be charged cancellation fees. The amount depends on the cancellation conditions of the airline. As a rule they are:

    Up to 80 days before departure 10%.

    Up to 60 days before departure 25%.

    Up to 40 days before departure 50%.

    From 40 days before departure 100%.

    We therefore recommend that you take out travel cancellation insurance no later than 30 days prior to departure.


    Please send us your registration in written form on the enclosed registration form by post/fax or by e-mail to The number of participants is limited to 15. The places will be allocated according to diversity criteria (age, gender, activity).

    The closing date for registration is 28 February 2019. Payment of the travel price is due on request by 2 August 2019.

    Important remarks

    For logistical and organisational reasons, changes in the itinerary and programme of the trip are sometimes unavoidable. A certain flexibility on the part of the participants is required.


    For further information please contact

    Elke Patalla,

    Phone 0202-89004-831


    VEM Training Centre Wuppertal

    Global learning in ecumenical perspective

    Missionsstr. 9, 42285 Wuppertal, Germany


  • UEM on the way

    Conference for former employees of the VEM

    UEM cordially invites its former employees and senior citizens to the annual meeting. New developments in the Mission and in UEM are on the agenda this weekend. The main topic this year is "Radicality through and in faith". In lectures and bible studies, but also through music, the topic will be made clear.

    Target group: Former employees of the UEM

    Date: 12 - 14 April 2019

    Management: Frauke Bürgers, UEM

    Volker Dally, Secretary General of UEM


    Contact: Petra Franken, UEM

    (0202) 890 04-174

  • Entry Course for South-North Employees in Mission Societies and German Churches

    Experts from Africa and Asia work in Germany in church congregations, educational institutions and in diaconia. Their talents and abilities can break through entrenched patterns of thought and facilitate good international cooperation. The German language and the new life situation present employees and their families with great challenges. Together with scholarship holders and volunteers from the South, they are prepared for their lives and work in Germany.

    Contents of the entry course:

    - Intercultural encounter

    - Working in a team in the church in Germany

    - Life in Germany Practical

    - Life as a family/with children in Germany

    - Counselling for spouses travelling with you

    - Didactics and methodology for working with groups


    Target group: South-North employees in mission agencies and German churches

    Date: 14 - 18 October 2019

    Management: Lusungu Mbilinyi, UEM

    Reinhild Schneider, Mission One World

    Location: On the Holy Mountain | Conference House, Wuppertal


    Contact: VEM personnel team

    (0202) 890 04-146


  • Returning Course for South-North Employees in Mission Organisations and German Churches

    Experts from Africa and Asia work in Germany in church congregations, educational centres and in the Diakonie. After the end of their assignment, they return to their home churches, and the return is often one of the greatest challenges for the employees and their families.

    In this seminar, employees and their families prepare for the forthcoming return. On these days it should be time to look at the experiences of the past years, to reflect on them and to be aware of the farewell and the new beginning. An important element is the exchange among each other.

    Since the commitment concerns the whole families, there will also be a qualified program for the children and young people.

    Target group: South-North employees in mission organisations and German churches

    Date: 10 - 13 May 2019

    The course is led by: Lusungu Mbilinyi, UEM

    Reinhild Schneider, Mission One World

    Location: Hackhauser Hof, Solingen

    Contact: UEM personnel team

    (0202) 890 04-146



  • Experiences with church at home and in Germany

    Intercultural reflection on different perspectives of faith and church life

    Students from the south are surprised, when they visit a German Sunday service for the first time. Empty benches, mainly old people and worn music by the organ… Everything seems to be different than at home.

    In this seminar we will reflect these experiences. The short presentations and discussions in small groups will focus on the following questions:

    How is the church organized in Germany? And how was the development of church in the last decades?
    The meaning of “Gottesdienst” and “service”: Who is serving whom?
    Church on Sunday and in daily life
    Two perspectives: Do we go to the church – or does the church come to us?
    Different experiences of spirituality and music
    How can an intercultural opening of German church communities happen?

    The seminar language is English.


    Target group: Students of all disciplines and other interested parties

    Date: Saturday, 23. March 2019, 10-17 o'clock

    Registration deadline: 08.03.2019

    Location: ESG Bonn, Königstr. 88, 53115 Bonn, Germany

    Costs: none

    Tutors: Michael Pues, ESG Bonn; Lusungu Mbilinyi, VEM; Johanna Kuhn, VEM

    Contact: Michael Pues

    phone: 0228-9119912

    Email: pues[at]

    Link to registration:


  • Partnership Conference in the German Region (28.09.2019)

    Every partnership is different, but there are also issues in partnership work that concern everyone: Communication, finances or theological questions, for example. They should not only be discussed in country-specific seminars, but should also be discussed together in order to facilitate and make clear a broader exchange of experience: We are on the way together.

    The Africa/Asia Partnership Coordination Committee of the German Region is responsible for the conference. At this year's conference, the committee would like to discuss current issues with the partnerships and agree on steps for further development. Current impulses from the member churches and partnership groups will be included. 

    Target group:
    committed people from churches and institutions with partnership relations, interested people

    September 28, 2019

    Lena Wallraff, UEM
    Members of the Coordination Committee
    Partnership Africa/Asia

    30 €
    Reduction possible for young adults

    On the Holy Mountain | Conference House, Wuppertal

    Elke Patalla, UEM

  • Country seminars

    Where are we closer than in a partnership? That is why there is a partnership network with over 100 partnerships between German, African and Asian parishes and church districts.

    Through mutual support, regular contacts and visits, many of these partnerships have built up close relations between countries and continents, in some cases over 30 years. In personal encounters, people learn what it means to speak of the church as a global community.

    Partnerships enrich through new perspectives. In the seminars current topics from church, society, politics and economy are taken up and analyzed against the background of the respective partnership. The political lobbying and advocacy work of the churches and partnership groups is supported and promoted. Thus the seminars also become an exchange forum for all interested parties. The current topics can be found in the announcements of the individual seminars.

    Target group:
    committed people from churches and institutions with partnership relations, interested people

    11.-12.01. Country Seminar Indonesia
    25.-27.01. Country Seminar West-Papua, Hattingen
    08.-09.02. Country Seminar Rwanda
    15-16.02. Country Seminar Namibia/Botswana
    15.-16.03. Country Seminar Tanzania
    10-11.05. Country Seminar DR Congo
    02.11. Country Seminar Cameroon

    Uli Baege, Africa Department, UEM
    Kristina Neubauer, Asia Department, UEM
    Lena Wallraff, UEM
    Further resource persons from GMÖ, EKiR and MÖWe, EKvW

    85 € (overnight stay in double room)
    95 € (overnight stay in single room)
    Location: Unless otherwise stated:
    On the Holy Mountain | Tagungshaus, Wuppertal

    Elke Patalla, UEM

  • Rwanda 25 years after the genocide

    In 1994, 800,000 to 1,000,000 people fell victim to the genocide in Rwanda - in just one hundred days. 2019 - 25 years after the genocide - Rwandans all over the world commemorate this event. They will grieve for family members and friends who have often been murdered in front of their eyes by friends and neighbours. The Rwandan state, the world community, has issued the slogan "Never again! But how can peace be preserved, reconciliation and reconciliation between perpetrators and victims be achieved? What about today's society in Rwanda, the Great Lakes Region? And what has the world learned from all this?

    The extent to which genocide is still taking place today and how the horrors of that time can be classified - that will also be the topic of the country seminar on Rwanda. Gerd Hankel, author of the book "Rwanda: Life and Reconstruction after the Genocide", will give a historical overview of the topic. In the further part of the seminar the speakers Mathilde Umuraza and Katharina Kleine Vennekate will introduce the current reconciliation work in Rwanda and present the topic of trauma processing. Exciting will also be reports from young adults from Rwanda on how they evaluate the history of their country and what future they see.


    On the Holy Mountain | Conference House, Wuppertal


    The conference costs include meals and conference fees.

    for overnight stay in a double room: 85 €.

    for overnight stay in a single room: 95 €.

    without overnight stay: 45 €


    After the binding registration you will receive a registration confirmation by e-mail. You will receive the invoice after

    Registration deadline by mail.

    Services not used will not be refunded.


    Registration must be made in writing by post, fax or e-mail, stating your name, telephone number and address. Online registration is also possible. If the number of participants is not reached, we reserve the right to cancel the registration at least four weeks before the start of the seminar.


    1. All trainees, students, and otheror pupils who have not yet reached the age of 29.

    Participants from the VEM network Young adults are reimbursed 50 per cent of travel costs from 100 kilometres (2nd class DB) upwards.

    The entitlement to a reduction must be proven at the time of registration.

    Cancellation conditions

    The following cancellation fees apply in the event of cancellation:

    From 11.01.2019: 60 percent of conference costs

    From 01.02.2019: 100 percent of conference costs

    Registration deadline: 04 January 2019

    Contact: Elke Patalla, Fon: (0202) 890 04-831 (morning)



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Phone: 0202 89004-0
E-Mail: info[at]
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