„I was scared to get in contact with them“
Every morning I passed the AfA (host organisation for asyl seekers) and one day I saw that there were more and more people there. All oft he sudden there was a lot of clothing on the fence and before it always had been just a place where people lived who were seeking asylum. But I never gave it a closer look and I haven’t paid attention.
And suddenly it was livelier and of course you also heard more in the media and then I started paying attention. We saw that people were camping out there because they had no more room inside the building.
I saw on facebook that there were posts that they needed donations of clothes and sleeping bags and then we started to collect and sort out stuff. At night time we threw sleeping bags over the fence. It sounds stupid but the fence made it easier.I was kind of scared of getting in contact (with them).
Although it actually is nonsense. But I am not fluent in english, because it’s too long ago what I have learned in school. I didn’t think something bad of them. I had no fear of another religion or so.
I was thinking “I can not jump towards them and ask them if they need anything. Perhaps I would embarrass them. What will they think if I just walk towards them and address them as refugees?”
Later on I have always talked to people. I always had clothes in the car. In the last few months I have always had clothes, blankets, towels and everything I could get in the car when I was driving around. And when I saw people who were still dressed with light clothing I stopped the car and talked to them with my lacking english skills. If that didn’t work I talked with hands and feet.
And it’s strange but after that we always hugged each other. You hugged each other and everything was fine.
I realized that there are many people who do not want to get in contact with the refugee topic. Not only people who you just know, it also takes place in the close circle of friends. Some have a very different opinion. That is, of course, difficult. It made me really thin-skinned.
But you can’t kick all the people who see the topic differently out of your life. Many people haven’t had contact with refugees. I honestly have to say I’ve never said “we shouldn’t let them in or we shouldn’t help those people.” But I said such things like “we can’t take them all”.
That’s different now. When you get in contact with them and you see their distress. I now have a very different attitude.
I have no idea how to solve or manage that.Although I have sometimes thought about how our country could solve this.
I have been thinking about such things like a “key”. For example, a village has a population of 2000 people, then you should definitely accommodate 20 refugees. Then they should not just be accommodated in camps but in flats.
And the local council should then discuss who takes care of them. So that everything is clarified from the beginning on.