Historically, the most common way of dealing with refugees is to quarantine them in the least desirable part of the city or country and shelter them there quasi-permanently. Optimally, refugees could find sanctuary in another country and be moved along.
The Refugee Academy is founded on the belief that refugees and immigrants can be a national asset and are human beings, besides. Their open education philosophy is rooted in the UN’s universal declaration of human rights
The Academy provides native-language education to help migrants find work within Germany. It utilizes volunteers who are willing to teach, and the curriculum isn’t limited to any particular trade, skill or ideology.
Beyond mere vocational training, the Refugee Academy emphasizes the creation of community and the social construction of a new homeland. They organize city tours and classes to help migrants understand more about Germany. In a sense, their work is really about designing new ways to think about migration – work that is desperately needed in our current geopolitical landscape.
Please listen to Eric Cesal’s interview with TeeKay Kreissig, one of the founders of Refugee Academy, on Social Design Insights.