We want to work as transparent as possible:
SchwuZ was founded in 1977 and is Germany’s oldest queer club and largest queer cultural institution. SchwuZ has been located in the rooms of the old Kindl brewery in Neukölln, its fourth location in 43 years, since 2013
The rooms are operated by SchwuZ Kulturveranstaltungs GmbH, which is 100% owned by SchwuZ e.V.. The SchwuZ therefore belongs directly to the community and not to any private person.
As a result of the move, around 1.5 million Euros have been invested on the premises at the Neukölln location to date. In addition, SchwuZ at this moment has around 100 employees and an average of around 300 freelancers working for the club, such as DJs, artists, external staff and technicians who all have to be paid per month.
Our finances are as follows:
SchwuZ has generated annual sales of between 1.9 and 2.2 million Euros in the past three years in 2017, 2018 and 2019. The profit / loss before taxes was a little MINUS in 2017 and small PLUS in 2018.
The balance sheets have been published and can be viewed at any time.
The distribution of our costs is roughly structured as follows: We spend about 50 percent of our expenses on our workforce (wages, salaries, social security contributions). This makes SchwuZ one of the largest employers for queers of the city and in all of Germany.
In addition, the expenditure goes towards: rents, insurance, repayment of a loan for the renovation of the new rooms as part of the change of location, GEMA fees, fees for freelancers such as Djs & artists, repairs, replacement purchases, purchase of drinks, marketing and advertising, taxes and bank fees.
The small surplus is reinvested directly into the location and our workforce. We pay above the minimum wage and have just commissioned the renovation of one of our three bars, but have paid most of it in advance.
The SchwuZ also comissions numerous events that are not economically profitable – making them all the more important for the community. Such as roundtables, discussions etc. We invest in those, because we think it is important that there are such events. We have to be able to afford that as a community place. And we want to be Every donation warms our hearts and makes each individual donor a special person in our thoughts.able to continue to afford that.
Why are we collecting donations now?
Because we know that our current cushion is very small and that we can survive for a few weeks at most on it. Of course, we have already set all levers in motion to reduce the cost pressure wherever that is possible.
For example, we have applied for deferral of tax payments and advance payments, rents, social security contributions and GEMA fees. However, depending on the recipient, this takes some time and we cannot always assume a positive decision.
And postponing payments only means that they are still due, although at a later date.
We also have the will to make an agreement with our works council to apply for money for short-time work at the employment agency. Again, you need to know that employees with a mini job, for example, are not entitled to short-time workers’ money.
This is all very difficult for us. Above all, we want to continue with the entire team as soon as we are allowed to. However, since we can hardly foresee when and how it will continue, we are now collecting donations.
We cannot yet foresee whether the closure because of the Coroana Virus will be extended beyond the 20th of April by the city council of Berlin – this would significantly increase the risk of causing us unsolvable economic difficulties.
In particular, it is still not foreseeable whether the business will immediately start up again at 100% after a reopening. We must therefore expect losses even after reopening. We definitely can’t get the canceled rentals in the rental business until summer back. They are a big loss for us.
We cannot and do not want to rely on the promised help from politicians. Programs have been announced but have not yet been implemented.
Of course, we will also take advantage of all the offers of help that come into question for us – but nobody knows when that is.
What will we spend your donations on?
We want to divide them into three areas: First, we want to use the money to secure the workforce and thus the jobs at SchwuZ for as long as possible.
If we have collected more money than needed, in the second step we want to provide income for artists who are in particularly precarious situations (preferably FLTI * & Queer Refugees). We want to enable us to contribute to their livelihood as unbureaucratically as possible.
If after that there are still funds available to us, we will donate the remaining amount to Lesvos Lgbtiq + Refugee Solidarity (https://www.facebook.com/LesvosLGBTIQRefugeeSolidarity/), who are heroeically taking care of the situation, in particular of queer refugees at the European border.
We know that every cent we receive is a real vote of confidence in our work and the institution SchwuZ. We assure you: we will not disappoint your trust.
Every donation warms our hearts and makes each individual donor a special person in our thoughts.
Thank you for all your help and support.
Your SchwuZ team.