Trampoline House launches a new project that makes it easier to work during the asylum phase
Klik her for dansk
It's the best kept secret in the asylum law that asylum seekers have the right to work in Denmark. Trampoline House is going to ensure that right with the new, job-focused initiative 'Next Practice'.
By Morten Goll, Founder & Director of Trampoline House
Trampoline House is facing one of the greatest challenges ever!
We've known for a long time that our holistic work for and with asylum seekers is extremely efficient within the areas of social network, counseling and system understanding, and democratic citizenship. We've been less efficient in the last area of our work: assessment and enhancement of skills and access to the job market.
The problem has been that the work needed in order to succeed in that area demanded more resources than we had, both with regards to know-how and finances. Therefore, we're very proud and happy to announce that TrygFonden and Tuborgfondet have decided to fund our launch of our new project, 'Next Practice'. The purpose of the project is to map people's qualifications, enhance their skills and find them the right job.
Integration from day 1
But why don't we just let the municipalities do that job? It's the jobcenters' task we're speaking of here. And almost all members of parliament agree that all refugees have to work and be self-supporting, so why does Trampoline House need to get involved in that?
We do, because the devil's in the detail. When the municipalities take over responsibility for their new citizen, he or she has already spent between 6 months and 3 years in an asylum center. A period of more than 3 months in an asylum center can break most normal people and turn them into clients of the system. The municipal effort therefore comes too late.
Trampoline House's response to this systemic challenge is as simple as common sense, and it's based on nearly 7 years of experience from our work: Integration should start from day 1.
Therefore we're hiring a new Job Coordinator, who'll be working to map asylum seekers' skills and to develop af network of companies who'd like to hire them. Another important part of the plan is to restructure all the volunteer work that asylum seekers already do in the house, so that these tasks also contribute to qualifying them for jobs outside of Trampoline House's four walls. Our goal is that 50% of all asylum seekers are a part of the job market before they get asylum in Denmark.
"But are they allowed to work?" you might ask. Yes. It's the best kept secret in the asylum law that asylum seekers have the right to work in Denmark. 'Next Practice' is a constructive employment of the laws in place.
You help making it possible
It's all possible because TrygFonden and the Tuborg Foundation have decided to support Trampoline House with a total of 5.2 million kr. during the next 3 years. We're incredibly proud to have these two important foundations as our partners, but we're just as proud of all of you who've chosen to subscribe to monthly donations to support Trampoline House's work. Our total budget during the next three years exceeds 10 million kr., so we still need all the support we can get!
Together we can prove that it's beneficial to society to give people who seek asylum a social network, access to counseling, democratic citizenship and a job.
Professional legal counseling equips refugees with the means to navigate and participate in the Danish society. Some are dealing with asylum rejections, while others are unaware of their rights to maternity leave. Across a diversity of situations, Asrin Mesbah offers legal advice on a daily basis, in the safe environment of Trampoline House.
At Trampoline House, job training isn’t just job training. Trampoline House provides a safe space for social engagement and the consideration of individual needs. This is highly valued by the job training agency Servisio, which since April 2019 has directed citizens to Trampoline House.
50 of around 60 families in deportation center Sjælsmark have written an open letter to Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen and Minister for Immigration & Integration Mattias Tesfaye. In the letter, they reject a Sjælsmark employee’s claim that most them want to stay in Sjælsmark. “It is indefensible and unethical to put words in our mouth,” they write.
“My daughter worries a lot about being deported. By investing in my education, I can help her dare to believe in a future in Denmark. And it’s good for me to take my dream education.”
“This is a life experience that I would recommend to anyone just because it teaches you so much; staying at Trampoline House is a nice experience and you get to learn a lot. Personal change and achievement, lessons for you and your life; it’s not just like any other internship that you get to do in other NGOs or organisations.”
Trampoline House offers free Danish classes for asylum seekers, refugees or other citizens who want to learn the Danish language and culture. Everyone is welcome.
New course on entrepreneurship makes it easier for refugees and asylum seekers to find a job or start their own business.
“I come to Trampoline House to learn Danish and to learn about the Danish society, so I can build my life. If you can learn it, it means you can do it.”
Trampoline House has seen a lot of reconstruction since last summer, improving the space for children’s activities, socializing in the café and focused work.
“All in all, it is giving a space for the groups of individuals which both Denmark and Copenhagen is actively trying to phase out via oppressive economic, social, and immigration policies.”
On 8th of March, women with and without refugee background came together to discuss their rights and possibilities.
Trampoline House’s new legal counselor focuses on making immigration law more understandable for asylum seekers and refugees. She offers free counseling every week.
At Trampoline House’s house meetings, the participants are practicing democratic dialogue. Meanwhile, the government and the Danish People’s Party are restricting refugees’ possibilities for integration.
The new Women’s Class empowers women by sharing stories and discussing feminism and human rights.
Ping Pong is more than just a popular sport. By playing ping pong, you can practice living in accordance with Buddhistic and philosophical values.
The government’s refugee policies don’t make sense on a humane, democratic or economical level. We have to resist!
“Please listen to our voices. We do not want our loved children crying every day because of the horrible living conditions. Our children are asking, why are we living here? Asking, what shall we eat? We, parents have no answers but to cry also ourselves. We don't want our kids to suffer any more.”
Since October 25, children and parents have been boycotting the cafeteria food in deportation center Sjælsmark. They ask for the center to be closed.
David is originally from China and now volunteering in Trampoline House. He has written a poem about hope.
Everyone who comes to Trampoline House now have the possibility to get help to find a job. Every Wednesday at 10am–12pm, volunteer job counselors arrange a job workshop that will strengthen the participants in their pursuit of the job market.
Support from Novo Nordisk Fonden, Lauritzen Fonden og private donationer, has made it possible for Trampoline House to hire a Children’s Club Coordinator. "The Children’s Club is to function as a nice place, where these children can find ease, security, positive relations, predictability and happiness," says Sara Ipsen
“The kids with citizenship got all that is needed, but not children who are growing up in the camps. I'm just sorry they don't have the same rights as Danish citizens. Also, they don't have the same opportunity, freedom, house, food, generally normal life.”
“There is discrimination on both sides. She wasn’t completely comfortable telling us that she was from Dansk Folkeparti. That’s why it’s an important thing for us to go to People’s Meeting and talk with people that are different from us.”
“If someone would ask what I miss the most from home, I would tell them I missed the smell of my mother and my brother. And the voice of the man I loved.”
“Before I started coming to Trampoline House, I was just in Roskilde. Sometimes I went shopping for maybe half an hour, and then I returned home to watch TV.”
“There’s a different atmosphere out here. It’s not about learning Danish or getting help with your legal issues.”
"You can get mental health and body health from ping-pong" Meet David, who’s behind Trampoline House’s weekly ping-pong workshops
"The kitchen before was very small and wasn’t prepared for this amount of people, but now it is good, and we are working more professionally."
"Some of the kids have had a traumatizing past, but they feel very safe here"
"Together, we can create a new paradigm". Get an overview of Trampoline House's activities and finances in 2017
Support Trampoline House
Every contribution matters. You can help ensuring that asylum seekers can be part of a community from their first day in Denmark.
It means more than you can imagine.