HERE’S WHY – If you’ve ever felt the special energy that only true fans bring to the stands, acting as one, jumping, and singing, you seek out this feeling again and again. When the Weserstadion was being renovated in 1997, young Werder Bremen soccer fans used the Fan-Projekt and the motto “Sitzen ist für'n Arsch” (“Sitting is for the dogs”) to successfully petition for the standing area on the eastern curve of the stadium to be retained and for the establishment of the OstKurvenSaal fan center.
HERE’S WHY – Even as early as the late 1970s, Dr. Narciss Göbbel, then a lecturer at the University of Bremen, had already called soccer a sociocultural phenomenon. After the Bremer Sportjugend kids’ club demanded social intervention due to increasing violence in the Weserstadion, Dr. Göbbel and his students developed a model project to address this subject. The death of a Werder Bremen fan in October 1982 after a match against rivals Hamburger SV and the subsequent “truce at Scheeßel” mark the beginning of social work with fans in Germany – a feature now considered an integral part of German sports – and of the history of the Fan-Projekt Bremen. This initial social work has evolved into forms of youth outreach and social engagement, political youth education, and anti-discrimination initiatives.