Tvind is the name of an international school centre in the small town of Ulfborg in
Denmark, founded in 1970.
History began when a group of Danish intellects got together in the late 1960s with plans to form an experimental
traveling folk high school. They wanted to gain knowledge about the third world and to find solutions to combat poverty.
Location of Tvind - In 1972 a base was found in
West Jutlandon a plot of farming land called Tvind, where several schools were built as well as a teachers training college. All of the schools received public subsidies according to the very liberal Danish law of education at the time.
Tvinds Aim - Tvind’s main aim was to imply
Maoist Theoriesto the education they would offer at the school, with expectations to reform the third world with these strategies and ethics. This influence came strongly from the great revolution at the time. The High school in question would follow socialist ideologies and “learning by doing” pedagogics.
Progression in the 1970s and 1980s - The Tvind Corporation soon became a popular center for youth
counter culturein the 1970s and 1980s. They under took social development projects in the third world and developed some groundbreaking social and environmental experiments. For example in the mid 1970s Tvind, in a massive collaboration effort with students and teachers, constructed what was then the world's largest electricity producing windmillon the school grounds.
Tvind schools began to emerge and in 1997 there were 32 schools allocated all over Denmark, including the teachers training college, traveling folk high schools, youth schools and schools for youngsters and adults with special educational needs. An estimated 40.000 children, youth and adults have attended the Tvind schools since the foundation first began in 1970.
The Teachers Group - The Tvind schools were and still are run by the
Teachers Groupwhich is an international community that bases its principles along the lines of having a common economy, common time and common distribution. Since 1970 the Teachers Group has grown to have approximately 1000 members.
A global corporation -Through out the years the Teachers Group has expanded, with its varied global activities and growing status, it is now defined to be a modern global corporation.
The teachers group, now maintain to run a network of schools, industries and agricultural productions throughout the world, as well as collecting used garments from the public and selling them in Europe, South America and Africa. A large number of properties around the world have also been purchased by the members' joint savings.
Members of the Teachers Group also run a number of
development aid projectsin the Third World, through development aid organizations affiliated to the Humana People to People movement.
Humana People to People -
Humana People to Peoplewas founded in 1977, inspired by the Tvind Corporation. The enthusiasm of the teachers that had traveled over the third world generated projects and actions to do more. They wanted to do more in the third world to raise the quality of life, to reach more people and to target fundamental issues to acquire humanizing conditions for people in need.
These factors are still in process today and there are now 28 national associations connected to the Humana People to People movement. The associations are working in 34 countries around the world, operating over 200 projects and involving more than 5 million people on a daily basis.They are still expanding and strengthening each year and in 2007 the Humana movement started their first project in Latin America, headline being “Fight Poverty”. Therefore there are many out reach projects and a strong future ahead for up and coming ideas to be put into focus.
Negative media - In the 1980s and 1990s, negative media was linked to the global corporation due to a waning faith in socialism and some scandals related to the authoritarian pedagogic methods used by the Tvind teachers. The Tvind schools were soon put under scrutiny and critisism. Not so long after all the bad press in the 70s, the founder of Tvind
Mogens Amdi Petersendisappeared from the public eye.
Amdi Petersen was not seen until 2003 when he was arrested in the USA for charges of
tax evasionpresented by the Danish government.
In 1996 the Danish government passed a controversial law cutting government funding from a number of specific Tvind schools, However in 1999 this law was judged by the
Danish Supreme Courtas contradicting the Danish constitution.
In 2006, Mogens Amdi Petersen and other prominent members of the Teacher Group faced tax evasion and fraud charges in a Danish court.
On August 31, 2006,
Mogens Amdi Petersen, Tvind spokesperson Poul Jørgensen, Kirsten Larsen, former Chairman for the Humanitære Fond Bodil Ross, Financial Director Malene Gunst, lawyer Christie Pippsand Ruth Sejerøe-Olsenwere all acquitted of charges. Former Secretary in the "Humanitære Fond" Steen Byrnerwas found guilty on a lesser charge. The public prosecutor appealed the verdict to a higher court. However this appeal is still pending due to Mogens Amdi Petersen and the other accused disappeared shortly after being acquitted at the lower court.
Is Tvind a Cult? - There have been accusations made by several commentators, defining Tvind as being a cult.
List of Tvind Schools
* DRH Juelsminde, Denmark
* DRH Holstead, Denmark
* DRH South Sealand, Denmark
* DRH Bustrup, Denmark
* CICD, England
* One World Volunteer Institute, Norway
* CCTG, California, USA
* IICD, Massachusetts, USA
* IICD, Michigan, USA
* CID, St Vincent and the Grenadines
* KNEC, Durban, South Africa
* TCDG, Sikkim, India
* YID, Yunnan, China
* [http://www.tvind.dk/TextPage.asp?MenuItemID=55&SubMenuItemID=165 Tvind International School Centre]
* [http://www.dns-tvind.dk/ DNS International Teacher Training College, one of the first Tvind Schools]
* [http://www.tvindportalen.dk/ List of current schools and care homes in Denmark]
* [http://www.tvind.dk/book/Default.htm Homepage of The Foundation for the Support of Humanitarian Purposes, for Promotion of Research and for the Protection of the Natural Environment ]
* [http://www.humana.org/ Humana People to People]
* [http://www.planetaid.org/ Planet Aid]
* [http://www.iicd-volunteer.org/ Institute for International Cooperation and Development]
* [http://www.uff.fi/sisalto_in_english.htm#top Short description of UFF Finland]
* [http://www.planetaid-alert.org PlanetAid-Alert.org]
* [http://www.tvindalert.com/ Humana Alert]
* [http://www.rickross.com/groups/tvind.html Material on Tvind] collected by the "Rick A. Ross Institute for the Study of Destructive Cults, Controversial Groups and Movements"
* [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/programmes/crossing_continents/1885116.stm Denmark's Tvind] – a
BBC Radio 4programme featuring former members of the "Teachers' Group"
* [http://www.guardian.co.uk/g2/story/0,3604,973358,00.html Enigma of The Leader] – a
Guardian Unlimitedarticle on the current Danish court case
* [http://cbs5.com/30minutes/local_story_018142322.html Behind The Green Box] – a CBS5 article and news report on the friendly "Gaia" label bins that are soon to be banned...
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