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Lerncafe Graz Leoben Knittelfeld

The ‘Lerncafe’ initiative was first launched in one Austrian town with EIF funding in 2007. It is now present across the whole of Austria, providing valuable support to immigrant children with school work and personal development.

Project dates 01/01/2012 - 12/07/2012
Total budget€149 774
EU contribution49%
Name of the entity managing the projectCaritas der Diözese Graz-Seckau

Project Description

The concept is simple: young immigrants – aged between 6 and 15 – are welcome to drop into the ‘Lerncafe’ (or Learning Cafe) after school. There, they do their homework together and organise activities for their free time.

Attendance is completely voluntary, and children are neither forced to study nor attend regularly. This forces them to become aware of personal responsibility and individual motivation. They also learn to motivate each other, and to share what they have learned. Particular emphasis is placed on strengthening the children’s social competences, self confidence and feeling of belonging to a community.

Alongside homework and improving language skills, the project also promotes health and nutrition. As they prepare a healthy snack together each day, the children are encouraged to eat healthily.

Benefits and results

The principal beneficiaries are Austria’s immigrant children. By learning to interact socially with others, building their self-confidence and their German language skills, the youngsters have a much better chance of integrating into Austrian society. But the benefits do not stop with the children. The whole of society benefits from the impact that the initiative has on integration.

The concept has been so successful that Lerncafes are now found across Austria.

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