Around 1,800 adolescents, who fled their home country without their parents and seek refuge from persecution, are currently living in Hamburg. They come from countries like Afghanistan, Iran, Syria, Eritrea, Somalia, and Nigeria. Judges order guardians for all of them – this is required by law in Germany. Youth office employees take over 95 percent of guardianship for underage refugees and they are already overburdened. One guardian cares for 50 to 100 adolescents, which means that individual support and care for the youth is only possible on a very limited basis.
This is where we like to help with specific individual support from our volunteer educational sponsors. Most sponsors in our project have an immigrant background themselves and have been through the integration process in Germany. In order to ensure the adolescents’ best care, all mentors have an academic degree and are integrated well in the German society. Qualified experts prepare them with introductory seminars for their challenging task. The educational sponsors are thereby role models and counsellors. They help the adolescents to integrate into society, awaken potentials, show perspectives and give them guidance on the way to their professional careers. Integration is made easier and educational opportunities improve immensely for these adolescents due to these volunteer efforts.