The idea for this project originated in the accompaniment of children and families in the shared accommodation Prisod GmbH. Since 2012, around 330 people from 20 different countries of origin have been living there in 84 housing units. 130 children between the ages of 0-18 share their new home with a wide variety of memories from their birthplaces.
We experience the challenges these children face every day; a constant balancing act between newness and tradition, being a child and carrying responsibility, arriving and remembering - between worlds. Having learned our language at breakneck speed, they now face the same pressure to perform as children who were born here. At school, they are often placed in age-appropriate classes following welcome classes, meaning they skip regular classes. Outside of school, numerous opportunities for development open up, but not all children find access to these. They often assume responsibility for many things early on, are involved in family tasks and accompany their parents as translators. Rooted in their own traditions, they are equally preoccupied with holding on to cultural identity, learning their own language and religion. The children of refugee families have a high level of competence, almost like small adults. We notice this again and again when they meet us with respect and empathy.
In the exhibition, the children take us to places in their everyday lives and give us insights into the process of arriving in their new home. Together with photographer Max Gödecke, they took pictures of different areas of their lives, including the dormitory, the school, sports clubs or their recreational domicile "Arche".
Our heartfelt thanks go to all those who have made this project possible. First and foremost, to our children and young people and their parents who shared and supported their enthusiasm.
We would like to thank the Kiezfond and the support of the district coordination "Der gute Pol" for providing the funds.