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22 February 2023

Online language courses for 55 trainees from the green professions

At the end of 2021, according to the UN Refugee Agency, there were 1.3 million people living in the Federal Republic of Germany who had fled their home countries because of war, political persecution or the consequences of climate change. Many - especially young - refugees want to quickly find access to the German training and labour market. A lack of language skills is often a major hurdle. For all those who have a training place, whether with a refugee or migrant background, vocational school lessons in the new foreign language are a challenge - which they often fail at.
In cooperation with the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF), the Welcome Guides of the Chambers of Agriculture of Lower Saxony and North Rhine-Westphalia as well as the Welcome Guides of the Federal Association of Gardening, Landscaping and Sports Ground Construction (Bundesverband Garten-, Landschafts- und Sportplatzbau e.V. - BGL), the Euro-Schulen in Oldenburg have started a pilot project in the school year 2022/23 to teach these trainees in the green professions job-specific language skills for successful training. Depending on the year of training, differentiated courses are offered for the green professions, on the one hand for gardeners/landscape gardeners and on the other hand for farmers, home economists, animal and horse farmers. A total of five courses with a sum of 55 participants could start in January 2023. These run until the end of the school year in July 2023, so that follow-up courses can start after the summer holidays.

The courses are funded by the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs and the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees. The course is free of charge for participants.

Role of the Welcome Guides

Welcome Guides and Training Advisors of the Chambers of Agriculture of Lower Saxony and North Rhine-Westphalia and the Welcome Guides of the Federal Association for Garden, Landscape and Sports Ground Construction, who are in close contact with the trainees and their training companies. The Welcome Guides are funded by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Protection (BMWK) as part of the "Passgenaue Besetzung" programme. The Association of Chambers of Agriculture (VLK) was also involved in the nationwide acquisition.

Room for enquiries

Our courses are conducted online once a week. This means that the lessons take place in a virtual classroom simultaneously for teachers and learners. Participants come from all over the country. The online format makes it easier for trainees from rural areas to participate. Trainees in the green professions in particular live and work predominantly in rural areas, which means that this teaching format offers new opportunities for them. The aim is to establish the language skills in the students for successful vocational school lessons and a successful final examination. In a protected setting, the trainees should lose their shyness and can ask questions that there is not enough room to answer in detail in regular vocational school classes.

A lot of time is devoted to the terminology of the respective occupational profile in the trainee language courses. For example, it is difficult for German learners to understand simple terms such as "native" trees or "common" horse chestnut, as these have a very specific meaning in the context of the occupational field and must also be used in the same way.

Participants enthusiastic

The enthusiasm and motivation of the participants are great. 37-year-old Naser Raznahan from Iran, who is in his second year of training as a gardener and works in a nursery garden in Bavaria, praises the interaction in the online lessons:

"Two things and subjects are fun for me: firstly, maths and counting, and secondly, learning German by listening again and discussing in the online lessons and taking part in the group. That means I learn about teaching and education as well as about the German language itself. Because most of the time they address me with a Bavarian accent, but in online classes everyone speaks in the official German language, and that in itself is practising and learning the language."

Salia Dao from the Ivory Coast, who is in his second year of training in agriculture in the Osnabrück area, is also very happy about taking part in the course:

"I get to tell people about my work in the training company and learn agricultural technical terms."

The good cooperation between the students has also led to contacts and friendships outside the courses.We are happy to make it easier for refugees and migrants to enter the German labour market with our online language courses.


Gender equality is one of the principles of our organisation. In this respect, linguistic equality is of essential importance. To ensure the non-discriminatory use of language use, we use – wherever possible – personal designations in texts that include all genders and gender identities. Accidental deviations do not imply any intention to discriminate.