Barbara-Maria Monheim Barbara-Maria Monheim
Initiator, Founder and President of the BELA Foundation


The BELA Foundation, an international non-profit organization established in 2006, is based in Berlin, Germany. BELA stands for Broader European Leadership Agenda. Its objective is to enhance active public engagement and interaction between the future generations of European leaders.

Barbara-Maria Monheim is also the initiator, founder and Chairman of the German-Polish-Ukrainian Society, an international non-profit organization founded in 1995 and based in Berlin, Germany. The Society supports the democratic and economic transformation taking place in the countries of Eastern Europe.

For more than twenty years Barbara-Maria Monheim has been contributing to the improvement of the relations and the reconciliation process between Poles and Germans. Anticipating the state of emergency, she left Poland in the fall of 1981 for Germany. In 1985 she started her first charitable activities. In 1989 she became a founding member and vice chairman of the Society for German-Polish Further Education in Management.

She subsequently supported for 10 years the Industrial Development Agency in Warsaw by organizing seminars and the exchange of experts between the agency and international counterpart institutions e.g. German Treuhandanstalt. From 1998 - 2002 she served on a voluntary basis as adviser on international affairs to the President of the agency.

From 1997 - 98, during the flooding of the Oder/Neise area she organized a relief program for the Opole region. For this she was awarded the Order of the Cavalier's Cross "Polonia Restituta" by the President of Poland and also a medal in honor of her services to the Opole region.

Barbara-Maria Monheim is currently contributing to the development of civil society in Ukraine by crea­ting a center to accommodate children in need in Kiev. This socio-political project has been accorded the status of a model by the Ukrainian government. This is unprecedented and should, after its evaluation in 2011, lead to the introduction of EU legal standards with regard to the care of these children in Ukraine.

Barbara-Maria Monheim is of Polish origin. She holds an M.A. degree in Economics from the Warsaw School of Economics. In 2009 she was awarded the Bundesverdienstkreuz of the Federal Republic of Germany.


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