Many municipalities in rural areas have recognized that immigration as well as the integration and participation of immigrants are important topics for the future, not least because of demographic change and the challenges of rural development. Ensuring the integration and participation of newcomers requires sustainable strategies and concepts, local cooperation between politics, administration, civil society and business, as well as political and social conditions that foster such processes. In this context, newcomers are powerful local actors, self-effective and decisive in shaping successful, future-oriented approaches and ideas.
Land.Zuhause.Zukunft aims to ensure that newcomers become a natural part of society in rural areas. The active shaping of immigration is an opportunity for administration, civil society and local business to create attractive prospects for newcomers to stay. We know that local actors – including immigrants themselves – hold great potential and the motivation to shape diversity in a positive, sustainable way. Therefore we cherish their expertise and understanding of local issues, challenges and resources. Only through their active engagement, the vision of Land.Zuhause.Zukunft can evolve and turn into reality.
Land.Zuhause.Zukunft aims to support rural actors in developing innovative approaches and strategies in integration policy. The program intends to strengthen active networking among all participating municipalities as well as the exchange of good practice. Moreover, Land.Zuhause.Zukunft works to raise the awareness of policymakers at the state and federal levels towards the needs, challenges and resources of rural areas. The program wants to ensure that new immigrants are perceived and involved in this context as essential actors in shaping an open integration policy.
Land.Zuhause.Zukunft consists of three pillars: consulting, networking, and communication. Land.Zuhause.Zukunft was shaped along the insights gained during the pilot phase from 2017 to 2019.
In cooperation with our consulting partners Kompetus and Ramboll, we support ten German districts in finding responses to their particular integration policy related challenges. The participating districts are sponsored by means of a one-year counselling process aiming to create solutions and strategies tailored specifically to local particularities and conditions.
Actors from rural areas are experts regarding the challenges and potentials of their local communities. This is why Land.Zuhause.Zukunft focuses on bringing those actors together to exchange knowledge, good practices and experiences. The program relies on different networking formats, for instance, capacity-building workshops, internal networking events and learning exchange grants. Furthermore, the Forum Integration Policy is a key platform for district representatives involved in integration policy and practice to expand their knowledge, exchange with fellow practitioners and decision-makers and foster sustainable approaches, concepts and strategies to help immigrants become full members of their local communities.
We support our participating districts in their public outreach measures. Beyond, we publish policy analyses, host a blog, send out regular newsletters and organize public events. All of our communication measures are aimed to raise awareness towards the issues and challenges rural areas face – and to bring to light their great potentials.
Learning Exchange Grants
Learning Exchange Grants are an instrument to enable district representatives, who are part of the program, to visit other districts in order to facilitate the transfer of knowledge related to challenges, solutions and practices of integration policy. Learning Exchange Grants can be requested at the Program Office of Land.Zuhause.Zukunft. District representatives are free to choose their destination, the subject of their visit and the experts they want to engage with.