The Foundation’s mission is to commemorate terror, war and the tyranny of dictatorship and to promote public discussion of these topics. The Foundation wishes to make commemoration with dignity possible for victims and surviving family members. It acquires and preserves buildings that remain, collects and preserves material objects and secures archive sources to make them available to a wider public. Its mission is to research, document and publish the structure and development of the concentration camps and their satellite camps in Brandenburg and the history of the NKVD camp and the politicised criminal justice system in the GDR.
The basis in law for the work of the Foundation is the Regulation on the Setting-Up of the Foundation Established under Public Law “Brandenburg Memorials” (Verordnung über die Errichtung der Stiftung öffentlichen Rechts "Brandenburgische Gedenkstätten") in the version of 9 April 2019.
After German Reunification, the task arose of restructuring the former GDR-era “National Memorials” int he federal state of Brandenburg. A commission of experts appointed by the Brandenburg federal state government and chaired by Prof. Bernd Faulenbach made its recommendations in 1992, and in 1993 the Brandenburg Memorials Foundation (Stiftung Brandenburgische Gedenkstätten) was established by the federal state of Brandenburg as a charitable and independent foundation under public law. It is funded equally by the federal state of Brandenburg and the Federal Republic of Germany.
The Foundation is responsible for looking after six memorials. They are
- Sachenhausen Memorial and Museum (Gedenkstätte und Museum Sachsenhausen)
- the Death March Memorial (Gedenkstätte Todesmarsch) in Below Forest (satellite location of the Sachsenhausen Memorial)
- Ravensbruck Memorial (Mahn- und Gedenkstätte Ravensbrück)
- Brandenburg an der Havel Memorial to the Victims of Euthanasia Murders (Gedenkstätte für die Opfer der Euthanasie-Morde Brandenburg an der Havel)
- Brandenburg-Görden Prison Memorial (Gedenkstätte Zuchthaus Brandenburg-Görden)
- Leistikowstrasse Memorial and Meeting Rooms Potsdam (trust foundation).
The Foundation Council and the Executive Committee are advised and supported by committees with an international membership representing the survivors. The registered office of the Executive Committee and the Foundation’s place of business is in the building formerly used by the “Concentration Camps Inspectorate” in Oranienburg. Since 2008, the newly-formed Memorial and Meeting Rooms Leistikowstrasse Potsdam Foundation has been managed in trust by the Brandenburg Memorials Foundation.
Governing bodies of the Brandenburg Memorials Foundation