What is a migrant organisation and how does it function?There are very many and very different migrant organisations in Germany. These organisations are often founded by migrant people; the majority of the members are migrants. Migrant organisations have different interests, offers and goals. Some advise and support people who are new to Germany. Others take care of the cultivation of the language and culture of origin. Still others are involved in youth and/or adult education, for example. Some migrant organisations are very structured, others are more loose initiatives and voluntary associations. There are also online communities: these are groups in which migrants exchange views online on various topics. You can become a member of a migrant organisation, but with most organisations you don't have to be a member to use what they offer.
When can I contact a migrant organisation?Depending on what you need and what interests you, you can contact different migrant organisations.
- ... if you are new to Germany and need advice and support with your first steps (dealing with the authorities, translations, etc.). Often the people in the migrant organisations speak your mother tongue and can help you.
- ...if you want to have contact with people from your country of origin. For example, you can look for migrant organisations for the language, culture or music, food or a special sport of your country of origin.
- ...if you want to exchange ideas with Germans and people of other origins and participate more in society in Germany.
- ...if you have experienced discrimination and racism and need help.
- ...if you are interested in social and political issues, such as combating racism, sexism and social inequality.
How do I find a migrant organisation?
There are many small and large migrant organisations that are active locally. Find out if there are migrant organisations in your city/region. You can also search the internet for online communities (especially on social networks). There are also migrant organisations that have joined together in associations.
We present some migrant organisations and associations here. The list is not complete.
Multikulturelles Forum e.V.
The Multikulturelles Forum e.V. promotes diversity, participation and equal opportunities. The association has locations in Lünen, Düsseldorf, Dortmund, Hamm and Bergkamen. Its work focuses on labour market integration, further education, counselling and political education and prevention projects.
The association supports people in finding out which profession is right for them and helps them in their job search and application. It has many counselling centres that, for example, help with applications or problems with authorities, assist in the search for kindergarten or school places or accompany people with other problems. In addition, the Multicultural Forum has a lot of courses where you can learn German or other languages, attend creative workshops, improve your health or get professional training. Last but not least, the forum has many projects that deal with living in diversity, anti-racism work, political participation or engagement against extremism.
FÖTED – Föderation Türkischer Elternvereine in Deutschland
The Föderation Türkischer Elternvereine in Deutschland e.V. (Federation of Turkish Parents' Associations in Germany, FÖTED) was founded as a federation of Turkish parents' associations. Since its foundation, FÖTED has seen itself as the mouthpiece of parents of Turkish origin and has campaigned for the improvement of opportunities for children of Turkish origin in the areas of education, training and vocational education nationwide with more than 120 member associations.
FÖTED co-initiated the founding of the Federal Parents' Network of Migrant Organisations for Education & Participation (bbt) for the nationwide networking of migrant parents' associations and initiatives. The aim is to systematically bundle their competences and potentials as important actors in the promotion of education and integration and to create synergies. FÖTED supports parents and multipliers in education and upbringing issues in various projects.
Der Verein Kamerunischer Ingenieure und Informatiker e.V. (VKII)
Der Verein Kamerunischer Ingenieure und Informatiker (The Association of Cameroonian Engineers and Computer Scientists, VKII e.V.) was founded due to the increasing number of students in computer science and engineering in order to bring the Cameroonian and African diaspora forward in the fields of computer science and engineering.
With around 700 members, the association pursues the promotion of development cooperation, vocational and adult education as well as student aid. One of its main goals is to identify the problems of the Cameroonian and African community inside and outside, to solve them with the help of the know-how of its student and professional members. The members provide support with their own experience and accompany African students who are becoming engineers from their first day in Germany. The offer is complemented by a mentoring programme and the VKII Bests Student Award.
Federal and umbrella organisations
The umbrella organisation of migrant women's organisations - DaMigra - has been operating since 2014 as a nationwide umbrella organisation of 71 migrant women's organisations, independent of origin and specific to women.
Local alliances of migrant organisations have joined together to form the Bundesverband Netzwerke von Migrantenorganisationen e.V. (Federal Association of Networks of Migrant Organisations, BV NeMO). www.bv-nemo.de
Umbrella organisation of migrant organisations in eastern Germany