We are starting the LOVE**WORK project with research. Together with experts and the public, we intend to explore this "in-between" aspect, the positive as well as the negative interactions, and the connections between the world of love and working life.

The topics of the evening sessions are as varied as the selected formats and shed light on this broad and often diffuse subject area. We are particularly interested in finding out how people would shape their lives if they had complete freedom. We will intensify this focus on "possible life plans" in the further research work on the project.

We are trying to approach the topic as impartial as possible, but at the same time we are aware of our feminist and consumer-critical approach in the matter.

We intend to document the individual events. We will treat the collected material confidentially and use it exclusively in an anonymous form. And, in a year's time, we are planning a staged production based on this research.


Friday, 22 March 2024, 7:30 pm until 11:00 pm

Alternative speed dating and crash dance course with costumes

It is a wrong assamption, that we only choose our partners and friends based on love, attraction, and sympathy. In reality, our occupational or professional situation - and, depending on this, our financial status - also defines our attractiveness on the markets of love and friendship. The means and opportunities that define the conditions under which we are loved are not equally distributed. A still clichéd understanding of roles leads to different attributes being exchanged in relationships - beauty, youth, or sexiness against social-economic power, for example. Desire is intertwined with income and assets economy and questions of value, including a person's self-worth - which in turn is also dependent on their occupational or professional position.

In a playful experimental set-up in the form of alternative speed dating, we explore the question of how our own network of relationships is composed. We reflect on missed opportunities and new perspectives.

Costumes are available. These allow us to explore possible “Concepts of Live” and alternatives.

With live music from accordionist Zé Oliveira, dancer Linda Trolese introduces us to the world of Bal-Folk between the talks.

Linda Trolese gives workshops, courses and entire seminar weeks in ‘Bal-Folk’ and contact improvisation. She has taught dance modules at the ZHdK (Zurich University of the Arts), Switzerland, performed in various stage plays and is a co-founder of the ‘Association Vivante’ in France. She completed her dancing training at SEAD (Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance), Austria and at TIP Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany. She now resides in Zurich, Switzerland.

Zé Oliveira interprets folk music in a new way. He incorporates elements of Jazz, Blues, Musette, Tango, Funk and World Music into his own compositions and interpretations. He plays for dance, performance, theatre and celebrations of all kinds, such as ‘in the tram’ or as a hospital musician (Dipl. DUMIMS France). He creates cinema concerts with his own digitally generated image compositions. He now resides in Zurich, Switzerland.


Place: Kulturhaus Helferei

Date: Friday, 22 March 2024, 7:30 pm until 11:00 pm

Registration: only with reservation, free admission

Language: German (For guests who do not speak German, we will work with a translator or match the conversation partners accordingly. Please let us know in advance which languages you speak,


Saturday, 23 March 2024, 6:00 pm

Discussions on 24-hour care with Bożena Domańska, Regina D., Sarah Schilliger, Nora Riss from FIZ (the Specialist Swiss Agency for Information on Women Trafficking and Migration).

Women from Eastern Europe leave their own families and social environment to care for people here in Switzerland. They live under one roof with elderly people in need of care and enable them to live -  and often die – independently, in their own homes. The carers are available 24/7, their wages are minimal and barely enough to live on, and they can hardly build up a private network of relationships. They often leave their own children in their native countries, as well as parents and friends, who also need care. This care gap is in turn filled by women, who migrate to Eastern Europe as a result of unemployment and poverty in their home country. In this way, poverty is systematically exported from rich Switzerland. Labour laws only apply to a limited extent for such employment relationships.

Bożena Domańska and Regina D. speak about their daily work, their living conditions, and how their families back home manage without them. Sarah Schilliger reports on the political background and the social realities of this fragile labour market, and then Nora Riss on the legal situation, as well. All four know from their own experience how solidarity, the build-up of networks and communities, public relations’ work and the exchange of knowledge can contribute to improve working and living conditions. They will also share this knowledge with us.

Bożena Domańska has worked in 24-hour elderly- and nursing -care in Germany and Switzerland for 32 years. In 2013, she was the first carer in Switzerland to successfully demand better working conditions and paid overtime in a court of law. She was nominated for the ‘Prix Courage’ for this action. She described her situation in documentary films and on the ‘Club SRF’ TV Programme. She was a co-founder of the Respekt@vpod network, which campaigns for better working conditions for private carers, organises meetings, offers advice and carries out public relations work. She originates from Poland, completed a carpentry apprenticeship there and ran her own farm with her husband. She now lives in Basel, Switzerland, and has a grown-up daughter and a granddaughter, both of whom also live in Basel, Switzerland.

Regina D. has been working in 24-hour elderly- and nursing -care in Switzerland for 14 years, and for the same service provider for 10 years. She is also a member of the Respekt@vpod network. She studied German and previously worked as a nurse in Poland. She is the mother of four grown-up children and commutes between Wroclaw in Poland and Basel, Switzerland.

Sarah Schilliger examined in her thesis for her Dissertation "Caring without Borders?" (2014), the working and living realities of Polish female care workers. She placed the development of this fragile labour market in the context of changing gender relations, current upheavals in the migration regime and welfare state restructuring, as well as in the care sector. She was involved in setting up the Respekt@vpod network. She is currently leading an international research work project at the University of Berne, Switzerland on solidarity initiatives and social movements in the areas of ‘migrant women’s' rights, housing and care. She is the mother of one son and resides in a large sharing community in Berne, Switzerland.

Nora Riss is a lawyer and project manager at FIZ in the labour exploitation project. This offers legal and victim support counselling and support for women affected by labour exploitation and human trafficking. The focus is on care migrants. FIZ is a specialist centre for trafficking in women and women's migration and helps those affected by human trafficking, violence and exploitation. Nora Riss is based in Aarau.


Place: Kulturhaus Helferei

Date: Saturday, 23 March 2024, 6:00 pm

Registration: with Reservation, free admission

Language: German (For guests who do not speak German, we will work with a translator or match the conversation partners accordingly. Please let us know in advance which languages you speak,


Tuesday, 26 March 2024, 7:00 pm,

cooking from 4:00 pm

Cooking, Eating, Sharing

There are people, such as asylum seekers, who are not permitted to take up paid work. Others cannot find a job on the labour market, either because they are too old, too young, disabled or affected by some other form of discrimination. Yet others, decide to reduce gainful employment to such a degree, that their income is just enough to live on. In their free time, they cultivate friendships and relationships. Or they take up work, which they find meaningful and enjoyable, but which does not earn them an income. There are also people, who do not have to work because they have inherited or become rich in other ways.

Whilst cooking and eating together, non-working and working people exchange views on how their voluntary or involuntary unemployment, or their gainful employment affects their lives and their personal environment.

Non-working people, who have the time and inclination to cook and eat with us, or working people, who would like to come for a meal after work, are cordially invited. The only requirement is an interest in discussing different forms of living and various types of life plans.


Place: Kulturhaus Helferei, Breitinger Saal

Date: Tuesday 26 March 2024, cooking from 4:00 pm on, eating from 7:00 pm on

Registration: with Reservation, free admission

Language: German (For guests who do not speak German, we will work with a translator. Please let us know in advance which languages you speak,


Saturday, 6 April 2024, 6:00 pm until 8:00 pm (full)

Workshop on stress and sexuality with Heike Junge and Christoph Stalder

What is lust? How does every day working life affect sexual desire? How does sexual desire affect the working life? Is stress a pleasure killer, or does sexuality help to reduce stress? Does power really promote lust? Do we work more lustfully when we have a fulfilling sex life? And what does pornography do to our will to work? Do we react to stress in a gender-specific way?


Based on theoretical knowledge, we analyse factors that can promote or inhibit lust. Through playful and sensual exercises and personal reflection, we will examine lust, intimacy and self-love. We will explore how everyday working life, stress and exaggerated or inadequate demands affect each other and how we can bring more sensuality and pleasure into our lives.

Participation only with registration. Admission free.

Heike Junge sex educator, social worker, artist and mother. Because topics such as sexuality, gender, physicality, contacts and relationships, boundaries and feelings, the media, pornography and diversity are important aspects of her work as a social worker, and are also important to society at large, she decided in 2019 to deepen her knowledge within the Sex Education Degree Programme. She lives in Zurich, Switzerland.

Christoph Stalder is interested in sensuality and the power of sexual energy in all areas and situations of everyday life. He works as a school social worker and as a sex educator in schools. He is also a nature and wilderness trainer and househusband. He lives in Aarau, Switzerland.


Place: Kulturhaus Helferei, Breitinger Saal

Date: Saturday, 6 April 2024, 6:00 pm until 8:00 pm

Registrastion: with Reservation, free admission

Language: German (For guests who do not speak German, we will work with a translator. Please let us know in advance which languages you speak,


Tuesday, 09 April 2024, 7:00pm until 9:00pm

Intergenerational storytelling workshop

How self-determined we lead our lives depends on many factors. There are people who enjoy going to work almost every day; work is the most important thing for them. Others only work because they need to earn money. Or, they do work that is not very enjoyable and/or not fulfilling for them. Our working day determines a great part of our everyday lives and has an impact on our private lives, which we spend with the people with whom we feel close to.

Working conditions and the way we love are both areas of everyday life, which are experiencing rapid change. Our parents worked and loved differently than we do, and our children have once more different plans and ideas about how they want to work and love, and how they want to organise their lives.

We welcome people from different age groups to talk about themselves and their experiences and to write these down. Above all, however, we will reflect on what a self-determined life could have been, or how we seek to shape our lives in the future.

We will be sharing anonymously on this evening. You will have the opportunity to write down your stories or tell them in private so that they can be written down.


Place: Kulturhaus Helferei, Breitinger Saal

Date: Saturday, 9 April 2024, 7:00 pm until 9:00 pm

Registration: with Reservation, free admission

Language: German (For guests who do not speak German, we will work with a translator. Please let us know in advance which languages you speak,


Thursday, 18 April 2024, 7:30 pm

Multidisciplinary Staged Performance "PARDES" about migrant workers in the Gulf Region.

The staged performance of "Pardes" tells the story of migrant workers from Pakistan, who travel to the Gulf Region in search of work. They often stay there for decades, and only return home to their families every few years. These leaves lasting marks in their personalities. Life is characterised by absence and longing. Under the prevailing living conditions, the migrant workers hardly ever experience any intimacy and security. There is a lack of space and time to cultivate private relationships.

Global inequality creates the illusion of a better life and prompts people to leave their traditional environment in search of opportunities.

We have already collaborated with Amna Mawaz Khan and Imran Mushter Nafees on our ‘SHAME ON YOU!’ Project.

Imran Mushter Nafees is a graphic and performing artist. With his art, he seeks to contribute to social and political change, disrupt the status quo and question power structures. He transforms his own fragility and emotional nature into an epistemic position, which encourages the production of a multi-layered dialogue. He creates platforms, which empower people to express themselves, including women and children from marginalised communities. He is a founding member of the Institute of Performing Arts, the Artist Collective Dugdugi (Islamabad), and the creative resistance group 'Laal Hartaal'. He exhibits and hosts national and international platforms. He grew up in a migrant labourer's family and has been exploring their stories of ‘unbelonging’ with workers and their relatives for several years. He currently lives in Karachi, Pakistan.

Amna Mawaz Khan works at the interface of art and politics, with the intention of scratching at the solidified surface structures, which sustain inequality in the world. At the age of eleven, she began training in South Asian dance forms under Guru Indu Mitha. She holds a Master’s Degree in Pakistan Studies from Quaid-i-Azam University (Islamabad), and is currently pursuing another Master’s Degree in Transcultural Studies at the University of Heidelberg, Germany. She moves between the dance, acting, writing and film art forms. She has worked as a choreographer, directed and acted in theatre performances. She has performed and given workshops in Pakistan, India, China, Switzerland, the U.S.A., Germany and the U.K.. She divides her time between Islamabad and Heidelberg.


From 15th to 18th of april, Imran Musther Nafees will be showing pictures and videos created in collaboration with migrant workers in Pakistan in the foyer of the Helferei. The artworks can be purchased. An overview of all the artworks and further information on the project "Pardes" can be found in the following catalogue. If you are interested, please write to us at


Place: Kulturhaus Helferei

Date: Thursday, 18 April 2024, 7:30 pm

Registration: Reservation possible, free admission

Language: The staged performance is in English, without subtitles. If you do not speak English, we will work with an interpreter. Please let us know which language you speak,