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LILY 4 REFUGEES EDUCATION & INTEGRATION PROJECT

As a former war refugee in the eighties, I know exactly how the refugees feel today. I also know what a difficult and challenging journey they have ahead. Once they arrive in their host country, rejection and indignity are just the beginning of a lifelong battle dealing with bureaucracy, discrimination and isolation.

As we all know, the issue of refugees and immigration has taken on urgency in the previous years. Not a day goes by that this delicate and ďannoyingĒ topic isnít covered by the international media.

It is horrifying and heartbreaking to witness the governments incapable of finding a solution that is beneficial for everyone. Why is this issue causing headaches for these highly educated and overpaid people in the governments, non-profit organizations and charities? Why is it so difficult to find a simple and helpful solution that ends this broken integration system once and for all? Why are these helpless people treated like dirt? Instead of taking care of these innocent people, they are sent to abandon buildings outside of the city centers. They are treated as if they are terrorists with a disease and who should be removed from society, punished and sentenced for life like prisoners.

Most refugees struggle for decades to get a permanent permission, like we did. Others struggle to find work despite having legal refugee status, which leads to difficulty finding a decent home and build a normal life and independent future. So, it is no surprise that young refugees see no solution other than to end up being homeless and doing criminal activities, such as prostitution and drug dealing.

Of course, the best solution to avoid the immigrants and refugees is to STOP creating war. But we know this wonít happen as long as there are power-hungry countries that benefit from this business and make a fortune by selling weapons!

But as I always say, there is a solution to every problem. If plan A isnít working, try out plan B. After 30 years of struggling with the asylum/refugee/foreigner system in a narrow-minded and prejudice country like Switzerland, I have worked on a solution concept.

Decades ago my mother and I experienced this failing system; first as asylum seekers, then as ďtoleratedĒ refugees with NO legal status or rights, and later as rejected adult foreigners.

But the solution is simple. Treat everyone the way you like to be treated, especially in times of need and desperation. Every human being should have the right to a life in dignity regardless of nationality, skin color, gender identity, religion and level of education. Every human being should be treated with respect and kindness. Every human being has their strengths and talents. Focus and nurture them instead of looking down on people and judging them by their life story, weakness and insecurity.

People are like the fingers on your hand. Each one is different and individual and yet they are connected and need each other to function. Do not stop people from further education in their field of interest and strength. Do not force people to do your dirty and low-income jobs. If someone is already down, you donít have to kick them too. Instead, help them up.

According to the latest news and numbers in the Swiss media, only every fourth refugee in Switzerland is able to work and earn money. All others are forced to survive with social welfare. More than half of 93,000 refugees are under thirty. Around 50 percent of the refugees have only a simple school degree from their home country. Not allowing these refugees to integrate from day one is counter-productive for everyone. The longer these people are ignored the longer the governments have to support them financially.

According to the latest news and numbers in the Italian media, of the 154,000 people migrated to Italy in 2017 and 84,000 applied for asylum. The Italian government placed less than 20,000 of those into integration programs where they learn the Italian language and get assistance for job placements.

Our motto is: Education means independence and independence means liberty. Helping one person might not change the whole world or solve the refugee crises, but it could change the world and future for one talented and devoted person! Donít forget that Albert Einstein was also a refugee!

Since 2005, when I self-published my memoir the first time in English and in German, Iíve contacted several people worldwide to bring awareness about the refugee issues when it comes to education and employment. People like Bill and Melinda Gates, Hillary Clinton, Maria Shriver Schwarzenegger, Mrs Blair, Sir Cliff Richard and Mohammad Al Fayed all responded with empathy but no interest in supporting my scholarship program.

More than a decade later refugees have become a global responsibility, and it is our duty to find an international and humanitarian solution. It is our duty to give them stability, security and a future with possibilities and opportunities. In collaboration with professionals, we are now developing an education and integration concept for refugees, and we are hoping to find partners who share our mission and goal. It is time to make a change and to find a worldwide solution for the failing immigration system.

If you are interested in finding out more about our concept, please sign up for my newsletter and we keep you posted. If you are interested in supporting us and becoming our partner or sponsor, please send us an email. Thank you!


NEWS OCTOBER 2018:

#LiftTheBan #StandUpForAsylum

What an amazing campaign in UK! LIFT THE BAN says exactly what Im saying for over three decades, which is: GIVE PEOPLE SEEKING ASYLUM THE RIGHT TO WORK!
In UK (like in every other country too), people seeking refugee status are banned from working whilst they wait months, and often years (and even decades), for a decision on their asylum claim. Instead, they are left to live on just £5.39 per day, struggling to support themselves and their families, whilst the Government wastes the talents of thousands of people. The @LiftTheBan campaign thinks that this is wrong and so do I. I too believe that people who have risked everything to find safety should have the best chance of contributing to society and integrating into communities. This means giving people seeking asylum the right to work so that they can use their skills and live in dignity. The Lift the Ban coalition is working to change this and to ensure that people seeking safety in the UK have the right to work. PLEASE SUPPORT AND SIGN THE PETITION NOW!



THE RIGHTS OF REFUGEES
I have enrolled for the Free Online Course "Human Rights: The Rights of Refugees on edX" organized by AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL. I encourage you to do so as well, if you are interested in defending and promoting the human rights of refugees. Empower yourself to create change!








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