News / Economy

Berlin Program Helps Minorities Enter Workforce

Berlin Program Helps Minorities Enter Workforcei
X
June 18, 2013 4:40 PM
German Chancellor Angela Merkel caused a stir three years ago when she declared the country's integration policies a failure. Since that time, though, several new programs have sprung up with the aim of giving immigrants a fair shot at a career in Europe's largest economy. One such program is called Berlin Needs You - and, as Michael Scaturro reports - it has been successful placing minority youths into full-time jobs.
Michael Scaturro
German Chancellor Angela Merkel caused a stir three years ago when she declared the country's integration policies a failure. Since that time, though, several new programs have sprung up with the aim of giving immigrants a fair shot at a career in Europe's largest economy. One such program is called "Berlin Needs You," and it has been successful placing minority youths into full-time jobs for the past four years.
 
Ayse is a Turkish-German Berliner employed by the city. She found her job through Berlin Needs You

At the program's recent annual meeting, counselors said they'd hit a milestone - 25 percent of new hires at city agencies now come from immigrant backgrounds.  

Some of the program's newest participants - like Hussein El Ali and Cihad Yildiz - talked about their experiences. Both just finished internships at the city's water company, and want to transition to full-time apprenticeships soon.

"There was a lot of variety. We didn't get bored. Our team leaders were nice. They were really patient with our questions. We could ask all the questions we needed to," said Yildiz.

"I agree. Our boss had his hands full but he always made time to help us," said El Ali.

One person looking to hire students from migrant backgrounds was Charlotte Kruhoffer, who represents Germany's largest hospital system.

"Apart from myself being of a migration background - I'm from Denmark - the whole hospital subscribes to the idea that Berlin is a very diverse city. We have people from all over the world. And the people we have working in the hospitals have to mirror that," said Kruhoffer.

Ayla Kadi is a consultant to the program. She said Berlin Needs You plays a vital role in helping kids from uneducated families recognize their potential.

"Their parents are not educated, their friends are not educated, they're at school with many other children who are also from families which are not educated. For them, working in industry is completely foreign. It's for them like another country," said Kadi.

The city's police force is also taking part in the program. About one-fifth of this year's list of recruits includes officers from Turkish, Vietnamese and African backgrounds.

Fatih Göre is a Turkish-German policeman from Berlin, and a mentor.

"Migrant youths want to take part. Of course there are people who are skeptical of the police. But many want to join the force, take part in society, and have a stable job," said Göre.

Though Berlin has met its quota, diversity in the public sector doesn't seem to be replicating itself nationally. New data by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development shows that Germany still has the lowest percentage of minority public servants in the 34-member group.

You May Like

N. Korea Sentences American to 6 Years Hard Labor

Matthew Miller's brief trial Sunday comes two weeks after 24-year old Miller and two other American detainees appealed to the US government to help free them More

Pakistan Rejects Afghan Criticism of 480-kilometer Border Trench

Military spokesman tells VOA the project is part of administrative and security measures taken to secure the mountainous border with Afghanistan More

Photogallery Typhoon Kalmaegi Makes Landfall in Philippines

Storm makes landfall late Sunday, cutting power and communications lines and forcing people to flee to higher ground More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
June 18, 2013 7:52 PM
It sounds great the 25 percent of new city servants are being employed from the youth with foreign background in Berlin. It must be a blessing for immigrants. I suppose Berlin could do this kind of offering probably because its unemployment rate of originated Berliners is enough low.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Scotland Independence Bid Stokes Global Interesti
X
Henry Ridgwell
September 12, 2014 8:35 PM
The people of Scotland are preparing to vote on whether to become independent and break away from the rest of Britain, in a referendum being watched carefully in many other countries. Some see it as a risky experiment; while others hope a successful vote for independence might energize their own separatist demands. Foreign immigrants to Scotland have a front row seat for the vote. VOA’s Henry Ridgwell spoke to some of them in Edinburgh.
Video

Video Scotland Independence Bid Stokes Global Interest

The people of Scotland are preparing to vote on whether to become independent and break away from the rest of Britain, in a referendum being watched carefully in many other countries. Some see it as a risky experiment; while others hope a successful vote for independence might energize their own separatist demands. Foreign immigrants to Scotland have a front row seat for the vote. VOA’s Henry Ridgwell spoke to some of them in Edinburgh.
Video

Video Washington DC Mural Artists Help Beautify City

Like many cities, Washington has a graffiti problem. Buildings and homes, especially in low-income neighborhoods, are often targets of illegal artwork. But as we hear from VOA’s Julie Taboh, officials in the nation's capital have come up with an innovative program that uses the talents of local artists to beautify the city.
Video

Video Palestinians Turn to Rebuilding Gaza

After almost two months of conflict in Gaza, Palestinians are preparing to rebuild the isolated Mediterranean enclave with assistance from abroad. Meanwhile, an international human rights group has found that Israel likely violated international laws of war during some of its attacks on Gaza. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video US Muslim Leaders Condemn Islamic State

Leaders of America's Muslim community are condemning the violent extremism of the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria. The U.S. Muslim leaders say militants are exploiting their faith in a failed effort to justify violent extremism. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.
Video

Video Middle Eastern Church Leaders Highlight Christians’ Plight

Patriarchs of Eastern Rite churches came to Washington this week to draw attention to the attacks against Christians in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere in the Middle East. VOA’s religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Americans' Reaction Mixed on Obama Strategy for Islamic State Militants

President Barack Obama’s televised speech on how the United States plans to “degrade and destroy” the group known as the Islamic State reached a prime-time audience of millions. And it came as Americans appear more willing to embrace a bolder, tougher approach to foreign policy. VOA producer Katherine Gypson and reporter Jeff Seldin have this report from Washington.
Video

Video Authorities Allege LA Fashion Industry-Cartel Ties

U.S. officials say they have broken up crime rings that funneled tens of millions of dollars from Mexican drug cartels through fashion businesses in Los Angeles. Mike O'Sullivan reports that authorities announced nine arrests, as 1,000 law enforcement agents fanned out through the city on Wednesday.
Video

Video Bedouin Woman Runs Successful Business in Palestinian City

A Bedouin woman is breaking social taboos by running a successful vacation resort in the Palestinian town of Jericho. Bedouins are a sub-group of Arabs known for their semi-nomadic lifestyle. Zlatica Hoke says the resort in the West Bank's Jordan Valley is a model of success for women in the region.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.7735
JPY
USD
107.03
GBP
USD
0.6155
CAD
USD
1.1011
INR
USD
60.954

Rates may not be current.