Here you can find frequently asked questions and the most important information for Waldorf schools regarding the implementation of WOW-Day. If you have further questions, please do not hesitate to contact the assigned contact person in your country/school or contact us directly.
WOW-Day is an annual fundraising campaign during which students in Waldorf schools around the globe collect donations by means of working in a company, charity runs, crafts and sales activities, circus performances or other activities that ultimately benefit Waldorf and social initiatives worldwide.
Children, adolescents, students in grades 1-13 at Waldorf schools and people in curative education and social therapy facilities. WOW-Day is suitable for all grades, if the organisation and execution is done in an educational context and corresponds to the age of the children/adolescents, if participation in the campaign is a joint decision between teacher and his/her class, if the legal framework is taken into account.
Of course your school may choose an alternative date for its WOW-Day campaign, if the proposed time period between 29 September and 29 November is in conflict with other school events or if the activities are spread out over several days.
Think about a creative and original idea for an activity that allows you to raise funds to support Waldorf initiatives worldwide. Activities may include: theatre plays, circus and music performances, selling crafted and baked goods, charity runs or one-day jobs in a firm, or any other great idea that you can come up with. We have compiled a collection of colourful ideas for you here.
Donation receipts may not be issued for tax-free remuneration. That should not be a problem for most students anyway. The employer also does not receive a tax receipt for hiring a student because he or she is not making a donation, but is rewarding the student for his or her work. Therefore, it is the student who earns a salary on WOW-Day and who makes the donation.
If you want to engage in street activities such as theatre, circus, and music performances, as well as sales activities, please do not forget to seek the permission of the local, municipal or county government.
*Important note: The answers to the questions below are based on German legislation. Therefore please check the respective regulations in your own country, especially those protecting children and teenagers.*
In case you decide to raise money by working for one day, you might want look for a job that you are interested in and would like to get to know better. You may choose any store, company or organisation. Even the local, municipal or county government might be a good choice of employer. Working for one day can be an exciting experience and may provide you with valuable insight into professional life. You can apply for a job in an institution of your choice with the WOW-employment contract and a WOW-Day flyer, which provides details about the campaign. In this way the employer is informed about WOW-Day and the goals of the fundraising campaign.
Together with your employer you agree on an hourly wage or a fixed amount, as compensation for your work. The employer then directly transfers the amount to the account of the school, which is stated in the contract. The school then forwards the donation to the bank account of the Friends of Waldorf Education. The WOW-Day-employment contract has to be included in the payroll.
Before working on a job assignment each student receives an employment contract. This contract should be printed in triplicate: one copy for the student, one for the employer and one for the school. The signed contract serves as a certificate of attendance for students, as proof of insurance in case of damage and as an accounting document for the employer. In any case: before taking up employment the consent of the parents or legal representative is required, which must be obtained in advance. An appropriate signature line is provided in the sample employment contract.
We naturally assume that employers ensure that no hazards for children and teenagers are present. Single day employment relations as part of the WOW-Day campaign are legally considered to be activities within the educational framework for the benefit of gaining practical work experience (according to §5 Abs.. 3 JArbSchG), i.e. students are subject to the duty of supervision by teachers. As a result, a student may be employed up to 7.5 hours/day from Class 5 onwards.
Since WOW-Day is a school event, students are insured through the school. Social security contributions do not have to be paid for the activities. The entire school or individual classes can participate in the WOW-Day campaign. It is important that the school has "the last word" regarding the selection of activities. Only if WOW-Day is carried out as a school event, accident insurance applies to protect students. This includes not only the detailed discussion of the project as a school event, but also that non-participating students attend an alternative school event. In any case one cannot legally give an off day to some students on WOW-Day (this would also be counterproductive from a pedagogical perspective, because it would lead to resentment among participants). It is also recommended that teachers visit a number of student workplaces.
There is no fixed minimum wage which must be paid to the students, because the work is performed under the legal framework of an internship. Each student agrees with the employer on an appropriate salary. The compensation should correspond to the activity and also the age of the student.
The employer transfers the salary of the student to the account mentioned in the employment contract. Please do not pay the student salaries in cash. We ask the employer to make the transfer of wages as soon as possible, so that the school can forward the donations to the Friends of Waldorf Education within four weeks. This allows us quick handling and forwarding of donations to the beneficiary projects. Furthermore, we can make sure that students get a timely response regarding the success of the campaign.
The employer does not receive a donation receipt for employing a WOW-Day student. This is because the employer is not making a donation, but merely remunerates the student for his/her work. It is the student who donates to WOW-Day. Due to the good cause of the campaign, the remuneration is usually not taxed. Thus, neither income tax nor social security contributions must be paid. Therefore, the expenses do not have to be accounted for as wage payment, but can be entered in the books under the account "temporary employees" or "other expenses". The employment contract then also serves as a receipt for accounting purposes.
After the completion of the campaign, we will send all participating schools a collection of thank you letters from the supported projects around the world. Since WOW-Day has become a rather large campaign and the process takes a long time to complete, it also takes some time to consolidate the feedback from the projects. First, the Friends of Waldorf Education have to receive the donations from all participating schools. Next, we distribute the funds to the intended projects and only then are we able to report on the use of money. Once we have an overview about the success of the campaign, we will send you our sincere thanks.
Of course. We would be delighted if the WOW-Day campaign results in a mutual exchange, friendships, partnerships or sponsorships. The handling of donations, however, is entirely handled through the Friends of Waldorf Education.
All participants can choose by themselves, which Waldorf initiatives they want to support. WOW-Day revenues are then forwarded by the Friends of Waldorf Education at 100% to those earmarked projects. The condition is that we received a message from you regarding which project you intend to support and that the project is mentioned in the bank transfer form.
It is not possible to apply to become a "WOW-Day project". Waldorf initiatives worldwide that are in need of financial assistance can formally ask for support from the Friends of Waldorf Education. These applications are evaluated at the end of the campaign by the Board of the Friends of Waldorf Education and the WOW-Day management. Depending on the situation and available resources we will help wherever possible.
All WOW-Day proceeds that are not earmarked are forwarded by the Friends of Waldorf Education at 100% to Waldorf initiatives that have submitted an application for assistance