Minority Secretariat

Minority Council of the four autochthonous national minorities of Germany

Frasche Rädj / Frisian Council Section North

The umbrella organisation of all the institutions and establishments working for the Frisian language and culture in North Friesland and Helgoland is Frasche Rädj / Frisian Council Section North. 

In its day-to-day work, Frasche Rädj considers itself as the contact and coordination organisation representing the common interests of the Frisian to the outside world and in other bodies. The members of Frasche Rädj are elected delegates/representatives of their associations.

Frasche Rädj is based in Bräist/Bredstedt in the district of Nordfriesland in Schleswig-Holstein. The tasks of the Frasche Rädj can be categorised into four areas:

  • organisation and substantive work
  • cooperation within the framework of the Interfrisian Council and annual meetings
  • contact and cooperation with state institutions on the level of the region (Land), federation (Germany) and European level
  • representative tasks

Homepage of Frasche Rädj
More information about the Frisians

The chair of Frasche Rädj, Ilse Johanna Christiansen, is Frasche Rädj’s representative in the Minority Council. 

Seelter Buund

The current Seelter Buund was founded in 1972. Already in 1952 a first association for local culture and traditions (heimatverein) called Seelter Buund was founded, but this association survived for ten years only.

The main purpose of Seelter Buund as association for local culture and traditions is to preserve the Sater-Frisian language and the traditions of Saterland. The attachment to their homeland, history and landscape is what Seelter Buund drives. With its representatives, Seelter Buund is closely connected to EBLUL-Germany, to the Minority Council in Germany and through FUEN also to many minorities in Europe. 

The Seelter Buund’s representative in the Minority Council is Karl-Peter Schramm.


Ilse Johanna Christiansen(* 1954)

Chair of Frasche Rädj / Frisian Council Section North

  • born and grown up in Nordfriesland
  • graduate psychologist
  • psychotherapist, employed at a specialist hospital
  • working freelance, e.g. in a hospital for disabled persons

Social involvement:

  • chair of the Südschleswigscher Wählerverband (SSW)-political group in the city representation of Bredstedt
  • second chair of Friisk Foriining
  • from 2013 chair of Frasche Rädj / Frisian Council Section North
  • from 2015 deputy mayor of Bredstedt/Bräist

Heinrich Bahnsen (*1949)

Vice chairman of the Nordfriesischer Verein

  • Born in e Hoolme/Ockholm, Nordfriesland into a Frisian-speaking family
  • Diploma in Business Administration
  • Until 2009 general manager of a Sparkasse, now retired

Social involvement:

  • For 36 years representative of the municipality in Brääklem/Breklum
  • For nine years voluntary mayor of Brääklem/Breklum
  • Local spokesperson of the Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU)
  • Chairman of the local committee for social issues, youth, sport and finances
  • Member of a local committee and the committee of the local school association
  • For ten years chairman of the financial committee of the school association
  • For 19 years board member of the Verein Nordfriesisches Institut, Braist/Bredstedt
  • Since 1997 board member of the Nordfriesischer Verein e.V., as well as three years of acting as chairman, since 2013 acting as the vice chairman

Karl-Peter Schramm (* 1948)

Chair of Seelter Buund

  • Saterfrisian from Lower Saxony
  • Profession: retired teacher

Professional career:

  • 1964-1966 secondary commercial college
  • 1966-1971 apprenticeship and teaching practice AOK Oldenburg
  • 1971 intermediate administrative test
  • 1971 test for non-high-school graduates
  • 1971-1974 teacher training at Carl von Ossietzky University Oldenburg
  • 1977-1979 studies in special needs education/education for people with learning difficulties
  • 1975-1990 teacher at the Barßel Special School
  • retired from 1990 

Social involvement:

  • from 1970 member of the Social Democrat Party (SPD)
  • from 1986 member of the municipal council of Saterland
  • member in several specialised committees, e.g. administrative committee and chair of the expert committee for fire brigades in SPD
  • from 1995 active in the association for local culture and traditions, chair of Seelter Buund
  • from 1998 chair of the European Bureau of Lesser Used Languages (EBLUL Germany)
  • from 2004 member of the committee for issues related to the Frisian minority
  • from 2005 member of the Minority Council of Germany

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