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EACEA National Policies Platform


8. Creativity and Culture

8.9 Enhancing social inclusion through culture

Last update: 28 November 2023
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  1. Fostering equality and young people involvement through cultural activities
  2. Combating discrimination and poverty through cultural activities

Fostering equality and young people involvement through cultural activities

It is a central goal of Danish cultural policy that all parts of the population, including young people, should have access to culture. Danish cultural institutions provide a host of different efforts in order to give all parts of the population, including young people, access to culture and cultural activities. One of the purposes behind this goal is to enhance social inclusion and social coherence in society. In this respect, an important aspect of all the activities mentioned under section 8.4 is achieving social inclusion.

Key players with regard to social inclusion through culture are the voluntary associations, for instance within sport and scouting. These voluntary associations receive economic support from both the state and the municipalities and target in particular children and young people, and they play an important role in establishing norms and creating social skills and networks, thereby enhancing the inclusion of young people into the Danish society.

In April 2020, the government and all parties in the Danish parliament settled an agreement on initiatives to support socially marginalised people and people with fewer opportunities/special needs. The signatory parties allocated a total of DKK 131 million to measures targeting children and young people in 2020. Among these:

  • DKK 10 million was allocated to voluntary organisations, cultural institutions, sports associations, and scouts associations. The funding supports the organisations’ outreach measures for vulnerable children and young people. The measures could be learning activities, leisure passes, summer camps and family friends.
  • DKK 5 million was allocated to holiday camps (ferielejre), excursions, music and culture events for families, children and young people.

In the 2019 allocation of the reserve for initiatives within the area of social services, health and labour market 2020-2023, DKK 22.3 million was allocated to broaden ‘the leisure green card’ (fritidspas) measure to include marginalised children and young people in after-school and leisure activities.


Furthermore, the Ministry of Culture administers two programmes, which enhance social inclusion through cultural activities.

The project 6705+ Danish Arts Foundation is a cooperation between the Danish Arts foundation and Esbjerg municipality. The residential area around Stengårdsvej in the city Esbjerg is characterised by a high unemployment rate and social problems. The project uses art and culture to build bridges and communities between people, cultures and social groups. The projects consists of several art projects, for instance:

The professional artist, Tina Ratzer, has arranged a range of workshops for local children, young people and residents in the residential area. A focal point in the workshops is colour. The material and inspiration from the workshops are used in a work of art that will adorn the residential area.

Residents in the marginalised residential area have chosen three theatre projects that will be produced and performed in the local area:

Professional artists along with children and young people from the area will create lanterns and sculptures of light. Furthermore, they will record sounds. The project will culminate in a procession in the local area with light and sounds in the winter darkness.

A group of residents along with a group of artists,will create an interactive walking performance through the local area.  The performance will use five locations in order to develop a new understanding of the local area.

Battle of Generations. In a battle show, a team of young people will battle against a team of elderly people from the local area. The two teams will battle on assignments such as “name your generation” or “say how you will save the world in 30 seconds”. The theatre association,, will use the battle to point out the teams’ self-understanding, and what unites and separates them across generations, ethnicity, gender and culture.

DKK 3.6 million has been allocated to the project from 2019-2021


The minister for culture has allocated a further DKK 250,000 to the project Power to Children, which is part of the Music Action plan 2019-2022. With the extra funding, the project provides a targeted measure for children and young people in the Project 6705+ Danish Arts Foundation.

With the extra grant, children and young people at a municipal school in a socially marginalised residential area learn to compose music with iPads and apps as their instruments. 


Art in Vaerebro Park

The Danish Arts foundation supports the project Art in Vaerebro Park. The marginalised residential area Vaerebro Park has been associated with gang crime. There are great economic and social differences between Vaerebro Park and the adjoining residential areas. The projects funds art projects in the local area, for instance an artist school.

The project has been funded with DKK 4 million.


Danish Arts Foundation supports the art project involving the galaxy pathway in the marginalised local area Vollsmose. The residents in the area have selected the art project, which is a pathway that connects the residential area with the local municipal school and the general upper secondary education institutions. Through workshops in the local library, youth clubs and municipal schools, children and young people create mosaics. The material and inspiration from the workshops are used in the galaxy pathway. The project has been funded with DKK 1 million by the Danish Arts Foundation.


Furthermore, the Ministry of Culture has established a special fund to promote the inclusion in local sports associations of people with special needs or who are socioeconomically disadvantaged, so that local sports will be available to everybody. The total funding is 19.2 million DKK. 


Combating discrimination and poverty through cultural activities

In 2019, two out of three municipalities offer discount (fritidspas) in leisure activities for children and young people from socially marginalised families. The main part of the municipalities offer support to membership fee; however, the scheme varies from municipality to municipality in terms of the total amount of support, the duration of the support, target group, and who should apply; the association, the parents, a contact person etc.


Two new pools of funding support projects that fight antisemitism and hate crimes in Denmark. One pool supports information activities on Jewish life and culture through exhibitions. The other pool also supports information activities through art and culture activities. The target audience is all age groups.

Four projects have received funding from the pools, one of which targets young people in the 15-25 age group.

The project ‘Shalom Denmark. Together against antisemitism’ launched a national campaign on social media. The project is funded with DKK 2.5 million.

The total funding is DKK 6 million.