Everyday Digital Help for Refugees

How can refugees in Germany be assisted to help them master their everyday life and stay up-to-date with news from their area and their home countries? In the "re:fugees@ARD – Projekte und Erfahrungen" session within the thened track "re:fugees", Björn Szostak, Verica Spasovska, Dimi Triantafillu, Caroline von Lowtzow and Schiwa Schlei presented what's on offer:

TV News

Cleaning the stairwell every Saturday – the purpose of the Swabian "Kehrwoche" can seem mysterious even to non-Swabian Germans. Refugees often don't even know anything about these types of local customs. The southwestern German SWR broadcasting service explains German culture and values in short films in Arabic, Farsi and Dari. There's also daily local news daily local news from the SWR in those languages.


Funkhaus Europa's "Refugee Europa" program broadcasts five minutes of daily news in Arabic and English. The format is also available in audio online, with the text downloadable as a PDF.

Online Platforms

From the immigration of family members to bike rentals: The website of the WDR television network offers informative and entertaining videos in Arabic, Persian, English and German, as does the refugees.ard.de microsite of the ARD.

Funny and Factual Stories in Arabic

Why do potatoes get soft when they're cooked and eggs get hard? The famous German mouse from the children's show now also answers these, and many other questions, for refugee children. The funny and factual stories from the "Sendung mit der Maus" (Show with the Mouse) are now available in Arabic.

Learn German with the Multimedia Dictionary

Refugees want, and should, be able to learn German as quickly as possible: An online multimedia dictionary is there to help them do this. Pictograms illustrate everyday German expressions from A for "Auto" to Z for "Zirkus", audio files teach the correct pronunciation.

Photo credit: re:publica/Gregor Fischer (CC BY 2.0)