News Overview 2017

From Refugee to Neighbor, Colleague, and Fellow Citizen

Following Germany’s acceptance of many refugees, one question has been dominating the current discourse: How can these refugees be integrated in such a way to allow them to successfully become neighbors, colleagues, and fellow citizens? We support projects that demonstrate concrete methods for successful cohabitation with refugees on a local level - in the professional world or at a karaoke bar.
Marina Kunert | January 2017
Photo: SINGA Deutschland/Max Power
In order to establish a new life in Germany, refugees require social contacts, opportunities to find work, and the opportunity to take part in public life.

Our projects in the focus area of Migration, Integration, and Participation take up the banner for the societal integration of refugees. They support refugees with professional mentoring, create opportunities for refugees to meet local citizens face-to-face, and develop cultural programs that everyone can benefit from.

Each project - in some way, shape, or form - provides migrants with an opportunity to participate in society. And yet all of them have one thing in common: they are effective, they take on challenges, and - above all - they demonstrate exemplary character.

Get to Know Four of Our Projects

Click your way through the pictures and learn about how the projects make it possible for refugees to integrate themselves into society.


SINGA Deutschland – the Three-in-One Idea

SINGA Deutschland brings people both with and without a refugee history together - by way of a professional mentoring program, speaking meetings, and events. For companies and other initiatives, SINGA is a model and a point of contact for all matters regarding the integration of refugees into society.

SINGA Deutschland

Einheimische und Flüchtlinge treffen sich durch SINGA Deutschland
Photo: SINGA Deutschland 
In order to establish a new life in Germany, refugees require contact to people who have been living in Germany for a longer time. This helps the refugees to learn German and create a social network for themselves. This network can also help them get a professional start. An apprenticeship or a job is important to truly be accepted – both socially and economically - in a society.

My Foreign Twin – Dialog through Something in Common

The My Foreign Twin program helps bring longtime residents of Constance together with refugees who have moved there by using something small they have in common: their date of birth. Despite the completely different courses that their lives may have taken, common birthdays offer something that immediately connects and has nothing to do with ethnicity or religion. The beginning of a dialog on an equal playing field.

My Foreign Twin – Dialog through Something in Common

Einheimische und Flüchtlinge treffen sich in Konstanz
Photos: Café Mondial e.V.:Andreas Sauer   
The special feature of the project is that it is not searching for a solution to a problem; instead, the project simply brings people together. They are given the opportunity to meet and get to know each other, because there are some fears of interacting on both sides.

Job Fair – Companies Meet Refugees: Turning Frustration into Motivation

The longer refugees are in Germany, the more desperate they become to find work. The labor market in Germany cannot be compared to other countries, because professional experience and degrees from foreign countries are often not recognized - which is frustrating for the affected. The Job Fair project in Hamm has turned this frustration into motivation.

"Jobmesse – Unternehmen treffen Flüchtlinge" – Aus Frustration wird Motivation

Photos: Flüchtlinge in Deutschland als Akteure e.V. 
Together with local authorities and the initiative Jugendliche ohne Grenzen, young refugees from the self-organization Flüchtlinge in Deutschland als Akteure e.V. planned and organized an employment fair in Hamm. Within the framework of different workshops, people from Syria, Guinea, Somalia, Eritrea, and other countries looked at the peculiarities of the German labor market and the value of their degrees from foreign countries.

Migrantpolitan – Culture by, for, and with Migrants

Located on the grounds of the Kampnagel art and culture platform in Hamburg, Migrantpolitan is a place to come together. There, various outlets are being developed for, by, and with refugees - be it the documentary series "Hello Deutschland" or "Oriental Karaoke," in which songs from Damascus are sung in Hamburg.

Migrantpolitan – Kultur von, für und mit Migranten

Zwei Musiker bei Oriental Karaoke
Photos: Anja Beutler 
Anas Aboura, in Hamburg as a refugee himself, is one of the organizers of the karaoke night and other events: "At a movie night, it is easy for people to start a conversation. You watch the movie, and then you talk about it."

Focus Area Migration, Integration, and Inclusion