Our commitment to refugee aid began in2015. Our initial focus was on first aid. Measures included supplying Wi-Fi to refugee reception centers, providing accommodation and recruiting civil servants for the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF). More than 700 employees provided temporary aid to BAMF in working with refugees. More than 130 civil servants employed with Deutsche Telekom transferred to BAMF.
The refugees.telekom.de online portal, which we set up in 2015, was further developed in collaboration with partners during the reporting period. We relaunched it in 2017 under the name "Handbook Germany". The online portal provides information on topics like jobs, education and life and living in Germany. handbookgermany.de addresses refugees in the place where they communicate most – social networks. Content is circulated on a number of social media channels. The platform can also be used on smartphones.
We also restructured our other activities in2016 and are planning to focus on integrating refugees into the job market. We are extending our offer of internships for entering the job market and focusing on longer-term offers such as training openings, entry-level training and scholarships at our in-house University of Applied Sciences. We are also developing new pilot initiatives like the "Internship PLUS direct entry" program, for which we joined forces with Deutsche Post DHL Group, Henkel and the Federal Employment Agency. The program's main target group is refugees with professional experience that don't have credentials recognized in Germany. We want to help these people improve their career prospects. To start with - and to help them find their way around - they participate in two phases of practical training (internships). We subsequently hire them for a limited period of two years. During this time, the refugees are given the opportunity to take part in integration and language courses. Many of our employees have been involved in refugee aid right from the start and have been supported by Deutsche Telekom in their efforts. In future, we intend to channel their efforts into supporting new colleagues who are starting work at Deutsche Telekom.
* German Federal Office for Migration and Refugees