Since Steffen was a kid, seeing people who were lonely, drunk or having a difficult time in the streets affected him deeply. He has been politically active since the age of 15, and after travelling the West Bank of Palestine and walking the Camino, the work with marginalised and homeless people has become important to him.
In 2013, Steffen chose to be homeless for 6 months while spending all his time with the marginalised people in Aarhus. While doing this, he built ‘Fundamentet’ (the Foundation), an organization aiming to help these people.
“Being homeless allowed me to spend all my time on creating the organisation ‘Fundamentet’. As I spent all my time on this, I could not have a regular job, thus no income to spend on renting a house.
At the same time, it allowed me to get closer to the environment I studied. To understand, learn and feel that world even more. Sitting at the homes for homeless people every day became a learning opportunity.”
In 2018, he passed on the organisation to other people and started Centre for Social Rethinking to do more research on why our current efforts to help marginalised people don’t seem to resolve the issues these people face.
“I have seen hundreds of people gain more issues and problems from the system we have built to help them. I have seen employees become sick from stress. I have seen Denmark build the most expensive employment system in the world, without equivalent results.”
His purpose is to share his research, his story and his solution with everyone who wants it – and who can use it.
Make sure to catch Steffen’s talk about an open-source solution to the problems of unemployment policies at TEDxAarhus 2019! Get your ticket here!