Arabic instead of Latin – Neumünster TV
„Arabic instead of Latin – that’s fair“
Ibrahim Ortacer met Amer Shaadouh at football: Today, the 17-year-old is an important helper in the integration process.
Ibrahim Ortacer was 19 when he first came to Neumünster as the child of a Turkish guest worker. „I didn’t come as a refugee, but the beginning wasn’t easy.“
Ortacer quickly learned that he had to become active himself if he wanted to gain a foothold in Germany. There were hardly any counselling centres at that time that could have helped him understand the country and the language.
That motivated him. Today, Ortacer is committed to the integration of foreign citizens in a variety of ways. His most recent project: „Neumünster TV“, a free app on which migrants and refugees can acquire knowledge of new citizens in eight languages.
How do elections work? Who helps me when I get mail from the job centre? There is hardly a topic that „Neumünster TV“ does not present in a video.
Ortacer calls it „Integration 2.0“. In this way, basic democratic knowledge can be easily and comprehensibly communicated to anyone at any time.
Why is that important? „Many migrants don’t even know what’s going on in their city,“ Ortacer noted with surprise.
Ortacer met one of his most industrious employees from „Neumünster TV“ at a Syrian community football tournament in Neumünster: Amer Shaadouh was 11 when his parents fled their war-torn homeland in 2013.
Amer spent his first years in a village near Hohenweststedt. The school there was very busy. He learnt German as a second language with other children from the Arab world – at first he did not notice much of the regular lessons.
What Amer felt worse than the language problems was that he could not find any German friends. „I was alone a lot back then: Germans like it when refugees already know a little German,“ explains the 17-year-old. „But that’s what it has to come to first.
Despite the language problems, Amer was a good student. His school recommended that his parents switch to grammar school. The family moved to Neumünster, Amer went to the Klaus-Groth-Schule. After his first day at school he told his parents: „I think I made German friends“.
If everything goes well, Amer wants to graduate from high school in three years. He has to speak three languages: German, English, Latin. But Amer is allowed to replace the examination subject Latin with Arabic. He feels that this is „fair“.
After graduating from high school, the young Syrian may want to study Information Technology – but he definitely wants to continue with „Neumünster TV“. Ortacer can really use him: In addition to Arabic, English and German, Amer also speaks a reasonable amount of Turkish.