About Diakonie Österreich

Who we are

Diakonie Austria supports people in difficult life situations – in sickness and in social emergencies, as refugees and in the wake of natural disasters. Diakonie promotes the inclusion of disabled people, accompanies those needing care and also in their old age, invests in educational opportunities for children and teenagers alike.

Diakonie ranks amongst the five largest social organizations in Austria. It comments on social policy and takes a stand for the rights and the safety of people in emergency situations.

What we stand for

Diakonie is committed to the Protestant tradition, in which the freedom that is gifted to a person results in responsibility for others. Diaconal action not only means helping people in need, it is also always a protest, calling for changes in the conditions that provoke the distress.


Together with four other voluntary organisations, Diakonie is part of the federal association of non-statutory welfare (BAG), voicing social policy concerns and requesting public funding. As a cofounder and an active partner of the Austrian Anti-Poverty Network (Armutskonferenz) as well as a partner of Zivilgesellschaft und Wirtschaft (civil society and business), Diakonie develops projects to make decision-makers and the public aware of social problems.

In the worldwide ecumenical ACT Alliance (Action by Churches Together), Diakonie provides disaster relief beyond borders. Under the umbrella brand Brot für die Welt (Bread for the world), Diakonie promotes long-term projects in development cooperation.


Diakonie bears the Austrian donation seal (OSGS) and undertakes to be economical and transparent in the handling of the donations. Furthermore, Diakonie is a long-time partner of the public-benefit organisations Licht ins Dunkel (light in the darkness) and Nachbar in Not (neighbour in need).

Menschen mit Behinderung

Persons with disabilities

Participating in life

Persons with disabilities have the right to participate in society. Diakonie provides overall assistance from early prevention to inclusive education and to disability-friendly workplaces. Every person should be able to develop his or her talents and interests.

What we offer:

  • Sheltered community accommodation
  •  Computer-aided communication
  • Family and social advisory services
  • Leisure options
  • Early prevention
  • Inclusive vocational training (job referrals and accompaniment)
  • Inclusive kindergartens
  • Art workshops
  • School assistance
  • Therapy (therapeutic assistance)
  • Workshops and  coaching groups
Niemand darf verloren gehen

Children and Teenagers

No one must fall by the wayside

Children in difficult life circumstances need special assistance. Diakonie has developed professional programmes to provide children with a better start into adulthood. It cares for children who face social and emotional obstacles, teenagers with a lack of education and training, as well as children with special education needs, including language support  language skills.

What we offer:

  • Parental counselling
  • Family and upbringing counselling
  • Flexible assistance
  • Early communication support
  • Curative education playgroup
  • Day-care centre specializing in orthopedgagogy
  • Special hospital for pediatric and  adolescent psychiatry
  • Social pedagogy community accommodation
  • Social therapy community accommodation
  • Crisis intervention centre
  • Leisure and recreational residential homes
  • Emergency sleeping shelter
  • Community accommodation for girls and young women with eating disorders
  • Female student hostels
Schüler der Evangelischen Volksschule am Karlsplatz vor der Tafel. ©Ulrike Wieser/ Diakonie Bildung


It is normal to be different

Education is of great significance to Diakonie and it should offer every child the best possible chances for development. Inclusion and Montessori education play a big role. Yet education is also a lifelong process everyone should participate in. Diakonie runs innovative educational institutions from day care to music schools, and from secondary schools with completed apprenticeships to short courses for volunteers.

What we offer:

  • Academy for continuing education
  • Vocational school
  • Voluntary social year “Spring ins Leben” (leap into life)
  • Secondary school
  • Lower secondary education
  • Daycare centre
  • Inclusion classes
  • Kindergarten
  • Nursery
  • Music school
  • School for social worker (working with disabled persons or senior citizens)
  • Health care and nursing school
  • Primary school
Zwei Frauen, von denen eine ein Kind im Arm hält


You cannot deport responsibility

It is an Austrian tradition to grant help and shelter to displaced persons and refugees. Diakonie carries this tradition on. It provides legal advice, medical care and housing. It helps with integration. It assists people to process traumatic events. It coaches and accompanies unaccompanied refugee minors.

What we offer:

  • Social security advice
  • Legal advice
  • Intercultural psychotherapy
  • Outpatient medical  supply for people without insurance
  • Integration projects
  • Mobile refugee coaching and support
  • Language courses
  • Courses to obtain a school certificate
  • Independent legal advice
  • Accommodation for asylum seekers and refugees
  • Accommodation for unaccompanied refugee minors (unter 18)
  • Intensive support and accommodation for asylum seekers with a greater need of care and assistance
Kampf gegen Kinderarbeit: Mädchen in einer Schulklasse in Indien

Working abroad

Rapid and lasting assistance

Rapid and competent assistance is life-saving after natural disasters, war or displacement. Particularly children, single women, persons with disabilities and the elderly depend on such support. Diakonie works on long-term projects together with local partner organizations under the brand Brot für die Welt, whose activities aim to empower   the persons concerned to take their own initiatives.

What we offer

Development Cooperation (Brot für die Welt)

  • Regional focus points: Eastern and  Southeast Europe, Southeast Asia, Southern Africa, Central and South America
  • Priorities: food security, inclusion, enabling education, peace-building, promoting women.

Disaster relief

  • Worldwide after natural disasters, war and displacement
  • Together with the ecumenical ACT Alliance
Auf Menschen in Not aufmerksam machen

People in social crisis situations

Finding ways out of the crisis

Where the public social network fails, Diakonie offers support to people in crisis situations. Homelessness, psychosocial crises and various forms of addictions are problems that Diakonie tries to resolve.

What we offer:

  • Social conselling
  • District advice centres
  • Alcoholism counselling
  • Self-help groups for alcoholics
  • Outpatient clinic for addictions
  • Outpatient clinic for gambling addiction
  • Housing for men
  • Assisted first apartment
  • Social psychiatric community accommodation
  • Meeting points for  people in social crisis situations
Altenarbeit in der Diakonie, Foto von Christian Herzenberger

Older people

Reaping the harvest

Many people wish to run their own lives, lead an interesting everyday life and enjoy quality care during their twilight years. Diakonie supports the wish to grow older with dignity by offerings that are as multifaceted as the needs of senior citizens. Affordable and in close proximity to their home district in order to relieve family carers.

What we offer:

  • Old people’s and care homes
  • Sheltered accommodation for senior citizens
  • Sheltered community accommodation
  • Dementia counselling
  • Volunteer visitors
  • Community accommodation for persons with care needs
  • Short-term care
  • Mobile services
  •  Advice on (home) care
  • Daycare
  • Daycare for persons with dementia
  • Therapy


Health for body and soul

Healing is more than just “repairing”. Diakonie has a holistic understanding of health.  Its services in health care range from medical prevention to hospitals and emergency medical services.  The high care standards are already set at the health and nursing schools run by Diakonie.

What we offer

  • Leisure and recreational residential homes
  • Health centres
  • Hospitals
  • Medical supply for persons without insurance
  • Emergency care services
  • Rescue and first-aid services
  • Special hospital for pediatric and adolescent psychiatry  
  • Special outpatient treatment for addictions
  • “Super hands” – support for children and adolescents who foster family members
  • Therapy centers