On common paths

By Uwe Gieseler At the end of this year’s Intercultural Week, numerous children and adults as well as locals and migrants gathered on Platanenallee in Tübingen with their self-painted colorful stones. Under the motto “#offengeht”, the working group for the Intercultural Week had organized the stone action. The preparation group was enthusiastic about the great response and the creative work of so many different people who participated from kindergartens, groups, districts, associations or as individuals. The refugee officer of the Tübingen district Hanna Hahn explained: “The diversely designed stones symbolize the diversity of society and at the same time stand… Read More

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Proverbs are a means of cultural communication: surpass time and place

By Youssef Kanjou Proverbs are a means of cultural expression and derive from the experience of a speech community. They are closely linked to the emergence of knowledge among members of that community. Sayings can also be a record of important events that peoples have experienced. Also, proverbs seem to be very old, appearing simultaneously with the discovery of writing, stories, literature and legends. For example, in one of the cuneiform documents from the Kingdom of Mari from the third millennium BC, we find the use of a popular proverb. The ruler of the city uses it in a letter… Read More

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Voluntary giving

Reem is still familiar with voluntary work from her first home country, Syria, where she grew up. Back then, “voluntary work” seemed strange to her: a job for which you don’t get paid, even though you do a lot? That didn’t make any sense. But for a few years now, Germany has become her home. Here, Reem has only really understood volunteer work since she herself volunteered with tünews INTERNATIONAL. When she thinks of volunteering in Syria, her first association is working in orphanages. That was very common there before the war, she reports. Since the war began, however, there… Read More

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Learning to swim means arriving!

By Ammar Beilschmidt   The initiative “Swimming for all children” renews the offer to all children from families with little money (holders of the KreisBonusCard) to learn to swim for free. This appeal was made on 22 July 2021 at Tübingen’s open-air swimming pool during the reading “In the water we are all equal”. Around 100 visitors from a wide range of backgrounds and cultures came together on a balmy summer evening to hear diverse, touching and exciting experiences of swimming. The stories ranged from the burning desire to learn to swim since childhood to stories where swimming was a… Read More

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Beware of caterpillars on oak trees

The oak processionary moth is a type of a butterfly. Its offspring is a caterpillar, that emerges starting end of May. Its “stinging” hair can cause skin inflammations with strong itching, inflammations of the eye or the upper respiratory tract and more. Especially risky is the direct contact with the caterpillar and its webs, within which they reside. The wind can spread around the caterpillar’s hair from the trees. The caterpillars have spread so widely during the last view years. Therefore, they can be found in almost all tree populations. Within the forest, the oak processionary moth is not being… Read More

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Two watermelons in one hand

At lunchtime, the grocery store where Mohammad from Afghanistan is doing his training is particularly busy. Many come on their lunch break to run errands. It has to be quick when shopping. “Mentally, people are already back in their offices or in the next store,” smiles Mohammad. In a hurry, some customers take the receipt, but leave the goods at the checkout. Some even leave their bank cards in the card reader. But Mohammad has a watchful eye and calls the customers back. They are mostly surprised and very grateful. “Sometimes I don’t understand the Germans – they try to… Read More

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Milk products – a precious commodity?

There are rich countries and there are poor countries. Mohammad from Afghanistan is wondering how many tons of milk, yoghurt or other groceries that have already been bought are thrown away in Germany. And in Afghanistan and other countries, for example, people need milk that is not there. In Germany the supply is much greater than the demand, especially at dairy products. And a lot of other food is thrown away here because the best-before date has expired. Mohammad’s training in the grocery trade includes going through the store every morning and sorting out the expired goods. Every day he… Read More

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Migratory Birds: Billions of migrants without passports

By Michael Seifert Birds that we haven’t seen all winter have been back for a few weeks: first and foremost, the swallows, but also warblers, the cuckoo with its characteristic call or storks. Birds are the most active migrants of all living things on earth – and they do not need a passport. It is estimated that around 50 billion birds are on the move worldwide every year, that is a quarter to a sixth of all birds. The phenomenon that is responsible for this is called bird migration. But what is that exactly? “We understand this to mean the… Read More

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Earthquakes in the District of Tübingen? Yes!

By Michael Seifert Here’s something that many don’t know: between Tübingen und Balingen, we live in a region in which the earth shakes frequently. The last time an earthquake occurred was on Sunday evening, March 21st, at 6.38 p.m., and it had a strength of 3.6. In the region Tübingen/Reutlingen, you could hear a bang like an explosion and feel a short tremor. The mayor of a township on the edge to the Swabian Alps, where the center was, said: “It was as if a car drove into my house.” Only in December 2020, there was a similarly strong earthquake… Read More

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Small purchases

A customer comes to Mohammad in the greengrocer’s and wants to buy a banana. What does one banana do? Do people in Germany live and eat for themselves? Mohammad suspects that many go shopping here because they want to have fun. In Afghanistan, where Mohammad came to Germany from five years ago, people would buy much larger quantities of food. Instead of one kilogram of potatoes, they usually buy three kilograms that would be enough for a medium-sized family for a week. Rice would be fetched by the sack for a whole month. In Afghanistan, shopping is really something different.… Read More

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