After the collapse of the German Democratic Republic and the reunification of the Protestant churches in Germany, a new concept of training in social work in general and within diaconal work in particular had to be drawn up. In the course of this process the Evangelische Hochschule für Soziale Arbeit Dresden was set up as the Evangelische Fachhochschule für Soziale Arbeit foundation in 1991. Faced by increasing social problems in the East-German federal states, the Lutheran Church in Saxony, the "Das Rauhe Haus" foundation in Hamburg, the Diakonisches Werk of the Lutheran Church in Saxony and the Evangelisch-Lutherische Diakonenhaus Moritzburg joined in this foundation along with the State Ministry of Science and Art of the Free State of Saxony. The establishment of the foundation was also supported by the Evangelische Hochschule der Diakonenanstalt des Rauhen Hauses, the Diakonisches Werk of the Evangelical Church in Germany, the North-Elbian Evangelical-Lutheran Church, the Evangelical-Lutheran Church of Hanover, the Evangelische Darlehensgenossenschaft Kiel, the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg and the Körber foundation.
For the past 20 years our institution of higher education has been pursuing the aim of meeting the current social challenges by ensuring the qualified basic, advanced and further training of specialists in social work, nursing science and early childhood education in cooperation with the churches of the German federal states and the diaconal services of the church province of Saxony, the Evangelical-Lutheran Church in Thuringia, the Evangelical Church of Silesian Upper Lusatia and the Evangelical Church in Germany.
The ehs' work is mainly financed by grants from the Free State of Saxony and the Lutheran Church in Saxony. All of our degrees are recognized by the state. The ehs has taken a lively interest in questions of social work in Eastern Europe from the very beginning of its development. Following the expansion of our activities in Europe within the scope of the ERASMUS program over the past years, our institution wants to act as a bridge, enabling and intensifying a transfer of information, structures and models of social and diaconal work between East and West European universities and other institutions of higher education and their individual schools.
We also maintain a close cooperation with deacon training colleges of the former Association of Churches of the GDR such as the deacon training college in Martinshof Rothenburg/Neiße, a forerunner of the ehs.