Companies benefit from new perspectives

You are a graduate and experienced computer scientist, media designer or lawyer. The war turned them into refugees. In some cases, they wait months or even years for work permits.

We all know that – without any perspective one becomes discouraged. And not only the refugees want to work, companies also need employees. Getting a bus driver to the BVG is a tough job. The trained lawyer Nawar Al Jairudi from Syria wants to do it anyway. He looks back on a long career in his home country and is ready to start all over again in Germany.

“Being part of this initiative has drastically changed my life”

Mohamad Mustapha came to Hamburg in April 2014. He had just finished school in his hometown of Damascus when the war drove him out. He is now on the way to the advertising industry as a Miami Ad School scholar. Together with Managing Director Ina Behrendt, the initiative “Papel & Caneta” and a growing team, he founded “Creativity Has No Borders”.


“Being part of this initiative has drastically changed my life: from scribbling big dreams on paper, I’ve come to work with international creative agencies,” says Mohamad. Agencies such as elbkind participate with their expertise and pro bono take care of the social media channels. Mohamad – “Mo” – acts as a figurehead and as the best example how the new perspectives from other corners of the world arrive in Germany.

The founder Ina Behrendt says: “This platform is an absolute affair of the heart to me. My basic idea at the time was: Wow, there are so many talented and passionate creative Refugees. They would like to contribute their expertise and experience and, on the other hand, the creative industry desperately needs talented new blood. “

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What Mo can do, many other creatives from Syria and the world can do as well.

(Image: “Creativity Has No Borders”)

Currently, the website and the team setup are being crafted. Not only in Germany agencies are to use the platform to find young creative people. The idea: Advertising agencies upload small creative challenges on the website.

Refugees submit their anonymous portfolios. “All that matters is the great work. This is the only way creatives are measured, without ‘borders’, that is, prejudices, “says Ina Behrendt.

Anyone who convinces because of his creativity will be invited for an interview. “What cooperation can look like after that has to be clarified on a case-by-case basis,” says Creative Director Andy Tran of elbkind. The multicultural team behind it acts as a mediator between refugees and agencies. Because what Mo can do, many other creatives from Syria and the world can do as well.

For all companies, which are not part of the creative industry, the “NETWORK company integrate refugees” is a good contact point.

With information on legal issues, practical tips and exchange of experiences, the “Welcome Pilots” support small and large businesses throughout Germany. They convey refugees through the Jobcenter.

The network also includes the initiative “ZukunftPlus”, which also provides jobseekers with help and advice. So for companies that want to work with refugees, there are enough competent guides available.

In Austria, the initiative “Training instead of deportation” is committed to finding jobs for refugees.

In addition, there are also online job sites for refugees listing current vacancies: “Careers4Refugees” and “Workeer” allow “dedicated employers” to advertise their vacancies. “Work for Refugees” arranges jobs after personal consultation.

In the meantime, 25 percent of the refugees who have arrived in Germany since 2015 have a job. If it goes on like that, about half of all immigrants would have a job in five years.

Many refugees are newcomers because the qualifications from their home country are not recognized here.

They flee from war, come to a foreign country as a lawyer, learn a new language and try to be bus drivers. So much dedication can only enrich any German company.

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