Intercultural Competence Trainings for Organizations Working with the Newly Arrived Refugees in Germany
With the recently-arrived asylum seekers in Germany, the work of applied anthropologists has become more prominent and visible. Germany has not seen such a high influx of asylum seekers since the 1990’s when refugees fled the wars in former Yugoslavia. Thus, a major shift in attitudes from the 1990’s to today’s world has taken place when it comes to refugees. “Since the September 11 attacks, some countries have curtailed their refugee-resettlement programs, others have tightened their border controls, and many are making an unwarranted link between the words ‘refugee’ and ‘terrorist’ ” (Lubbers 2002:60), ultimately portraying refugees as a security risk. This branding but also the fear that is generated by the media and political campaigns show the importance of intercultural workshops, in order to foster cross-cultural dialogue and hence the integration process of the refugees. This paper will offer an insight into a research project that started end of 2015 in Munich, Germany, where most of the refugees arrived. Some of the following questions that will be addressed are: What kind of intercultural training is necessary to better prepare the organizations that work with the newly arrived refugees? Is an intercultural workshop for people working with refugee communities enough to foster the integration of the newly-arrived or have other resources to be put into place?
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