Meet Your Neighbors - Dialogue strengthens social Solidarity
Meet Your Neighbors is a project that initiates and promotes conversations between people with and without a history of migration across Germany. The aims of the project are:
- to enable dialogue and exchange on an equal footing,
- to strengthen people with a history of migration and flight and increase their participation in society,
- to promote democratic coexistence and social solidarity, and
- to connect people, actors and organisations with each other.
The focus is on the topic of “work” – a topic in which individual skills, hopes and desires as well as social structures, barriers and hurdles become visible. Meet Your Neighbors broadens the view to include people who have immigrated or fled to Germany for a wide variety of reasons: The focus is on their expertise and strengths, which they can contribute to society.
Meet Your Neighbors conceives and organises events together with associations, initiatives and migrant self-organizations. In various narrative formats, people with migration and refugee history report on their experiences:
How do they connect to their own biographical history after arriving in Germany?
What goals and wishes do they have for their future?
What can we learn from each other?
Meet Your Neighbors encourages people with migration and refugee history to speak up and take space for their own narrative and story. People from the neighbourhood are invited to listen and meet them.
The events mainly take place in rural areas: Until 2023, the project will focus on the Ruhr area, Brandenburg and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.
What Meet Your Neighbours changes
At Meet Your Neighbors, people with shared and different experiences meet in a safe space. This can create networking and relationship opportunities that can have a positive effect on local social cohesion.
A major objective of Meet Your Neighbours is to derive and formulate political demands from the stories and experiences of people with migration and refugee histories. Local politics is therefore actively involved in the project in order to facilitate existing access to structures, networks and work.
What Meet Your Neighbours has achieved so far
Since 2016 Meet Your Neighbours has organised over 60 events throughout Germany. Amongst others we have been in Berlin, Bonn, Bremen, Bruchsal, Dresden, Hamburg, Heidelberg, Jena, Cologne, Mainz, Munich, Nienburg/Weser, Rostock, Stralsund, Wismar, Bergen on Rügen and Greifswald. In addition, a Meet Your Neighbours festival was held in Munich’s Monacensia at the beginning of 2018. All events have shown how enriching diversity is. We are holding on to that!
We welcome anyone who wants to get involved in the Meet Your Neighbours project. If you want to get involved and organise an event in your own town or in your own bookshop, library or community centre, do not hesitate to get in touch.
Meet Your Neighbours is a project from WIR MACHEN DAS / wearedoingit e.V. funded by the Stiftung Mercator.
We would like to thank our cooperation partners from the previous project phases: Fonds Soziokultur, Allianz Kulturstiftung and Stiftung :do.