Did you know that IBZ Castle Gimborn, located in idyllic wooded mountainous surroundings in Germany, houses the IPA’s Education and Information Centre and is widely referred to as the Flagship of the Association.

Founded in 1969, it is where IPA professional seminars, conferences and meetings are held. The full seminar programme and information on the facility is available at www.ibz-gimborn.de.

Seminar Programme can be found here:Seminar 2024

A truly international institution, the Board of Trustees includes representation from 23 national IPA sections, the International Executive Board and several German IPA regions and police authorities. Castle Gimborn employs permanent administrative and teaching staff members, who coordinate a seminar programme, with professional speakers on a wide range of topics.

Here is a review from Debbie, just one of our Section Ireland members who benefited from a scholarship to a recent Seminar held there:

For several years, the IBZ has been offering seminars in foreign languages, some with simultaneous translation, in order to successfully address interested parties from other countries. Seminars in English, French, Italian, Dutch, Polish, Spanish and Romanian have a permanent place in the annual program. Every year, police officers from more than 30 different countries come to Gimborn to get to know other cultures and ways of thinking, the similarities and differences in the conditions and attempts to solve police tasks in our everyday roles. I was lucky enough to win the IPA Ireland Gimborn Competition for 2023 and I attended the Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking course from the 4th to 8thSeptember 2023. There were Police Officers from 32 different nations taking part in the course.


This seminar dealt with International, national, regional and domestic modern slavery profiles and links to other areas of criminality or crime types. Human Trafficking is a serious global issue that effects every country on earth. Environmental and personal factors most associated with Modern Slavery and circumstances or locations where modern slavery is more likely to occur. The roles of law enforcement, other statutory agencies, commercial organisations and charities in supporting modern slavery investigations and supporting victims was presented as well as appropriate skills and investigative tactics which can be utilised to support victims and progress modern slavery investigations including Financial, Cyber & International enquiries.


The seminar was delivered through a range of presentations, case studies, audio/video presentations, guest speakers and group activities to explore the content. It was structured into modules, each focusing on a specific aspect of the subject matter ensuring that we all developed a comprehensive understanding of the subject matter. The course materials, such as presentations, handouts, and additional resources, were provided to support our learning experience. They used a variety of teaching methods, including lectures, discussions, group activities, and practical exercises, to engage participants and facilitate effective learning. The instructors encouraged active participation and provided opportunities for us to ask questions and clarify doubts. During the course, I had the opportunity to interact with other participants, which enriched the learning experience. The diverse backgrounds and perspectives of the Officers from different countries contributed to insightful discussions and a collaborative learning environment. I really enjoyed listening to the Guest Speakers with their wealth of knowledge and their expertise on the relevant topics. A survivor spoke with us on one of the days through Zoom and we were offered to engage and ask questions.


Attending this course was a rewarding experience. It equipped me with a solid foundation in with regard to Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking and enhanced my understanding of key concepts. I believe that the knowledge and skills gained from this course will be valuable in my personal and professional development. I would like to express my gratitude to the instructors and organisers for their efforts in delivering a well-structured and informative course. In the evenings we had some down time where we had some group discussions, could get involved in sport activities and also spend some time socialising in the “Turnbar” in the castle, which was a very joyful experience. Midweek we also took a trip into Cologne to experience the local sights, cuisine and beverages as a group.  I highly recommend this course to individuals interested and look forward to attending another course at IBZ Gimborn.


Deborah O’Neill, Garda, 34667e