In the Seventies, the activities of so-called "Youth Religions" (vulgo: sects) increased dramatically also in Austria. At the same time the methods used by those groups to suppress and eliminate the free will of their members and the consequences of this influence upon the individual became obvious.
In 1977, our organisation was founded as Verein zur Wahrung der geistigen Freiheit (Society for the Preservation of Spiritual Freedom) by concerned relatives and experts interested in the problem. In 1992, our association adopted its new name Gesellschaft gegen Sekten- und Kultgefahren (Association Against the Dangers of Sects and Cults) which should express its aims and contents without being a reason for misunderstanding.
As a consequence of its engaged educational work an inter-ministerial working group on "Pseudoreligiöse Organisationen" (pseudoreligious organisations) arose which finally asked our association to set up a center for documentation and counselling.
Our association and this center at Obere Augartenstraße 26-28 is a non-political and non-confessional institution in Austria which deals with the problems of extreme religious and other problematic movements.
The activity of the association is non-profit oriented. It's exclusive goal is to limit the damage caused by destructive cults to individuals, to their friends and families and to the community as a whole.
Necessary and possible areas of activity:
We accepted as our duty to assist as many as possible people who are concerned by the problematics of extreme religious movements by consulting and also by prevention. From this, various areas of activities emerge:
Assistance to relatives of cult members, passing of information to those who are in danger of falling victim to the fascination of a cult, support to ex-members for their return to "normal" life and for their finacial claims to the group which they had left. Those activities which are the main tasks of our consulting center would urgently need expansion in face of the fast growing cult scene.
Collecting and keeping records of source- and informational material which essentially is the base of our work and is permanently enlarged and updated by our co-workers and members.
Besides this, permanent information of the public authorities and information of professionals and the public about the methods, activities and goals of destructive cults. This is done by informational conferences in schools and other educational establishments and by support of media in reporting.
To meet all those self-imposed tasks as much as possible we also need support ! If you are concerned by this problem because one of your friends or relatives has joined an extreme religious movement or because you share our concerns by any other reason or because you want to help us by financial contributions, by co-operation or information, please contact us !
But in the first place you should contact us if you need help ! We will try to assist you as far as our possibilities permit !
The "Gesellschaft gegen Sekten- und Kultgefahren" is a member of FECRIS, the "European Federation of Centers of Research and Information on Sectarianism".
The work of the "Gesellschaft gegen Sekten- und Kultgefahren" is supported by