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Fostering the integration of refugees

From leaving their country of origin to integrating into their host country, BSF helps migrants and refugees to overcome the difficulties they encounter along the way.

Population movements linked to crises, conflicts and/or (inter)national wars continue unabated. In this context, the issues of protection, guidance, information and psychosocial support for refugees, especially women and children, are a priority alongside adressing their primary needs.

Welcoming and integrating millions of refugees in European countries has become an enormous challenge. Given this situation, the Libraries Without Borders network in Europe – BSF Belgium, BSF France, BSF Italy and BSF Switzerland – is mobilized to deploy emergency, shelter and integration solutions for refugees.

In camps, our tools enable them to keep learning, overcome boredom and keep faith in the future. In host countries, we work in emergency shelters, socio-cultural centers and libraries, so that they can become familiar with the local language and culture, and have access to all the information they need to exercise their rights, access housing or find a job.

Discover our initiatives in Belgium
to help refugees

Opening emergency libraries in shelters

These emergency libraries are made up of books and games. They are a place to relax, to unwind, to access information and a first step towards discovering the host country.

After several working weeks and an analysis of the premises and needs, the first micro-libraries have opened their doors: at the Pachéco center, at the Ukrainian cultural center Promote Ukraine and at the Monastère de la Visitation. More are still to follow…

KARIBU : an app for learning French and Dutch from Ukrainian

Learning the language of the host country is essential for finding one’s bearings, taking administrative steps or simply integrating and looking ahead. Until now, there hasn’t been a free, practical solution for learning French from Ukrainian in the Cyrillic alphabet. This is now the case thanks to Karibu.

This solution, developed by BSF, offers a quick and fun way to learn French, as well as a wealth of content about Belgium and its culture, enabling learners to immerse themselves even further.

Operation "my bag of books": books as a vehicle for social cohesion

Organized for the first time in December 2022, the  » My bag of books  » operation offers displaced children and teenagers aged 5 to 15, who have recently arrived in Belgium, a personalized bag of books chosen by pupils from a partner school and LWB Belgium.

The aim of the bag is to give the children and teenagers a taste for reading in a language other than their own, as well as helping them to learn French and to discover their new host country.

It also enables the Belgian pupils involved in the project to question the role of reading in their own lives, and promotes greater awareness of the world.

Why supporting our actions?

In situations of conflict and humanitarian crisis, access to reliable information is a vital necessity. Rumor-mongering and the spread of misinformation have devastating effects on already vulnerable populations. By creating secure information outlets, relieving the pressure on the youngest members of the community and promoting social inclusion, BSF enables refugees to make the right decisions at the most critical of times, as well as offering families and children a breather in the midst of their ordeals.

We need your help to continue developing our actions on behalf of refugees. Act now by making a donation!